Thursday, January 21, 2010

The booby trap

Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) / Booby Traps
By definition, booby traps are disguised or well-hidden, victim-activated devices. The initiating object is going to be fairly obvious, as it is the object that the enemy hopes a soldier will interfere with in order to set off the trap. Booby traps rely on an unwary or distracted soldier touching or pulling a physical object (such as a war souvenir) or provide a too-easy access or simple solution to a problem (such as leaving only one door open in an otherwise secure building).

In an operational environment where booby traps have been used, soldiers must be trained to constantly question why things are positioned where they are or why the enemy might have left obvious routes open. The enemy will watch reactions and procedures executed when moving through an area. They will be looking for natural behavior and weaknesses in soldiers' drills. For example, in Vietnam, the Vietcong (VC) noticed soldiers liked to kick empty soda cans that were lying on the ground. It was not long before the US troops found that the VC were leaving explosive devices in empty cans lying alongside regular patrol routes. The devices were activated when the cans were kicked.

I was just talking to some friends about some of the justice issues surrounding youth in these times. One thing that keeps coming up is women. Equality should be an issue of the past - it seems women have been advancing on that front for years now - but inequality has discovered new strategies and seems to have made a comeback - particularly with women.
I've recently found out that Australia has the lowest rate of breastfed babies in the western world. That stat's a real shocker. It seems as though everyone is quite 'liberal' in this part of the world... but it turns out (after some studies/articles I read) that any place where women are highly sexualized breast feeding rates plummet. As a matter of fact the health nurse in my own suburb says that even more alarming are the plummeting rates of breastfeeding among mothers from other nations who have immigrated to Aus. It's tragic. It should be an alarm for women and men in Aus - sounding the need to fight against sexualisation and inequality.

It seems as though a male dominated society doesn't like the idea that breasts have other functions - proper functions, real functions - less romantic ones but essential to the nourishment and development of babies. It's a booby trap if you ask me.

There is another move about in the Christian world that champions inequality as a gospel standard. Obviously we read different books - because the gospel I read is all about equality and liberation - freedom and truth. If you'd like some updates on the equality issues in the christian tradition I recommend this website: Christians for Biblical Equality and if you need a refresher on some specific biblical texts I'd recommend Why Not Women? by Lauren Cunningham and David Hamilton.

Women, let's get to the front - it's time to deal inequality a good punch to the chin and send it to the ground. The war is raging and to the front we go. Join me.


Bernard said...

Hi Danielle,

Thanks for your post. I would like to respond with 3 points if I may as follows:-

1. Further to a previous recommendation of yours, I have read ‘Why Not Women?’ (and continue to refer to it), and have found it a very useful and helpful contribution to the equality discussion. Thanks for your recommendation. However, I would suggest that despite its positive value, it does not resolve all issues of the debate.

2. The Christians in the ‘other move’ you mention, do not read a different book (the Bible). They read the same book and also hold to equality, but they do have a different understanding of its practical outworking. They hold very much to equality of value of men and women, but not necessarily of role, particularly in the Church and home. Although not easy to outwork, in the Salvation War, they are your friends and not enemies.

3. Thinking further about your points on breast feeding (with which I fully agree); is not breast feeding an example, together with giving birth, of roles/functions which belong solely to the female gender (though recognising that not all females fulfil these roles)? Yet this in no way devalues the male gender. Male and Female genders are equal in value, but in this area at least, are different in function/role.

Thanks again for your post.

Wishing you every blessing on your life, ministry and family,



Tracy said...

Hi Danielle,

Thanks for this post. I'm really passionate about the breast-feeding thing, and was really happy when a young girl linked to us at least 'had a go' at it, and few her daughter for the first week of her life - she just turned 17 a few weeks ago and her baby is nearly 6 months old now. It seems to be a more middle class thing over here to breast-feed, and sometimes there's a generational link too.

I remember you coming to Roots in the UK when my daughter was only a few weeks old, and I know I must have fed her while I listened to you! Don't think I got too many stares!

It's just such a natural thing, and I wish people would understand and accept that.


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Lesley Fellows said...

Loved the post, very thought provoking, I have referred to it in my lastest Blog:

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