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Welcome to the VMI Discussion Group, an independent organization seeking to preserve vital VMI traditions. Please update yourself on this crucial issue by reading the following prior to posting a reply.

VMI Alumni Speak Out Candidly

John It is my opinion that all avenues should be examined to keep VMI as we know it. I would support all efforts to seek ways to change the injustice (total lack of understanding of VMI) that has been done .

Mr. Knight, Unless I'm mistaken, it is already a requirement for VMI to admit women. VMI is schedule to accept women for the Fall Semester of this year. We can talk about Civil Rights issues, but the issue of women at VMI is already a "done deal."


Even though I am one VMI Grad who feels that we got the shaft from the Supreme Court, (and the Board of Visitors also, BTW), the from what I've read on the decision leads me to believe that the Affirmative Action decisions will have no bearing on our situation.

We were judged as being unconstitutional from the standpoint of not providing an equal opportunity for women to get a full time education in a military college environment. The AA action is California primarily centers on EEO re: jobs and employment.

One could argue that equal opportunity is equal opportunity, but I believe that we would have to go quite a distance to convince the SC that what happened to VMI and the Citadel falls into the same category as affirmative action.

Hi John,

Thanks for asking for opinions on the possible effects of the repeal of affirmative action statutes.

The issue of women at VMI was decided on the {flawed} premises that single gender schools are prima facie discriminatory AND that there was no overiding benefit to society to continue such a practice.

The problem with this position is that the VMI which produced excellent results with one gender will not acheive the same results with both genders in the program. To see the truth of this, one need only look at the product of the service academies since the introduction of coeds. The overiding benefit to society was the citizen-soldier.

Thus, with the stroke of a pen, the court has destroyed {or at least crippled} an excellent source of men who are ready, "in time of deepest peril". VMI has ceased to exist as the entity which produced the citizen soldiers of whom we are so proud.

Affirmative action statutes are created with the intention of redressing old acts of discrimination. In essence, discriminating with good intentions. The creation of reverse discrimination is the real outcome of such laws.

Unfortunately, the repeal of affirmative action statutes will not, in and of itself, have much impact on VMI's current situation in the near term. It may prevent the implementation of a quota scheme for matriculation of female cadets, but that is all.

There is hope that the California initiative signals a shift in the prevaling political wind. Such a shift could ultimately result in the Supreme Court taking a less active role in {failed} attempts at social engineering.

If this trend continues toward a more constructive view of the Constitution of these United States, we may all look forward to the return of the freedoms our forebears fought so hard to obtain for us. That could include the freedom to attend an all male VMI.

John, I believe affimative action and discrimination are two totally seperate entities. Affirmative action sets forth requirements for businesses to follow that closely resemble racial quotas, where as discrimination is not bound by percentages. If affirmative action was done away with I do not believe it would affect the decision to admit women to VMI. That decision was enacted due to years of "so-called" gender discrimination. We (men), possessed something so sacred (VMI) and wouldn't let them (women) take advantage of the opportunitites that VMI held. We must face reality and recognize that the VMI as we know it, is dead and will never be the same. ***************************** You raise an interesting point. However, I wonder if it is too late. The problem is that, once the accomodations have been made for women, it will be difficult to remove them.

I just wish there was a way to reverse this dreadful action by a socialist Supreme Court.

What can we do to remove socialism in this country?

***************************** This one will ultimately be appealed to the Supreme Court and will be decided there. However, I view VMI's situation to being very different from what is happening in CA. The VMI decision is now a part of Federal Case Law and it is highly unlikely that it will ever be overturned. Also, the VMI decision is primarily a gender decision that was based on discrimination of women in state supported military college admission policies and in federally funded military officer training (ROTC) programs.

****************************** I had hope VMI would remain a single sex school, but it did not. It does seem like they are making the necessary plans to incorporate women into the corps. They took a year and had a plan (unlike the Citadel, who said, let's go and see what happens). Changes in our society need as much mindful consideration to ensure their success. Too many times power is not in the right hands.

********************************** John, the California action will not affect the VMI issue regarding women.....ours was an equal rights question and not one of quotas,, in my opinion, there is nothing to discuss.....

************************ Co-education at VMI is wrong for two reasons:

1. There is a place for state-supported all-male military education. The onus should have been on the state to provide a viable female alternative. 2. Barracks life will change; barracks life is part of a triad of environments that create the VMI man. The other two are VMI's military structure and VMI rigorous cirricular standards.

However, our fate has been cast. It is time to fill our boots and show the nation the kind of character the old VMI system forged into the VMI Man. Accept the challenge with fervor. Look for solutions, not permits to ride to get the good deal. The task is ominous; but VMI men - and now VMI women - must rise to the challenge and show our true colors: Honor above self.

**************************** Having walked so far down the road of the present course -- I see no future in resurrecting the issue of an all-male VMI. In fact, I believe that any attempt at such could seriously backfire and dramatically diminish the Institute's excellent record thus far in meeting and exceeding the outside world's expectations for coeducation.

Thus, I would strongly caution anyone who wants to raise the issue again to consider the impact (and probably seek the advice of the Superintendent, et. al.) before going public.

These are my personal feelings on this matter. Believe me, I strongly supported the concept of single sex education and am very sorry that VMI was forced to change.

**************************** I don't think the CCRI will have any effect on VMI's admission requirements, as the admision policies don't try to make up for lost groud (preferential admission), but rather, it allows women to compete on an equal basis for admission.


**************************** Not withstanding the above... the decision has been made and not let's get on with it's implementation! Sustaining this argument is nothing but counter productive to the eventuality... let us get on with life!

**************************** Mr. Knight,

My response to your survey:

1. The ruling will destroy VMI. strongly agree (VMI can't possibly exist in a permssive, homogeneous state.)

2. The majority of women will not benefit by the admission of women. strongly agree

3. Men will lose much and gain little by the admission of women. strongly agree (Perhaps not so much men in general, but VMI men will certainly lose.) 4. This ruling is a violation of my constitutional rights. strongly agree (It removes the choice I had to attend an all-male school! How can that be Constitutional by any stretch of this liberal ruling?!)

5. This ruling is a violation of my religious beliefs. neutral

6. This ruling is a violation of the oath I took to uphold the Constitution. agree

7. VMI should remain all-male. STRONGLY AGREE! (VMI is NOT for everybody, and certainly not for women!!

Thank you for taking "point" on this crucial issue. **************************** The ability to go to a single sex school is denied to men by this ruling. This is a clear loss. The chance for women to go to a full-time, uniformed military school is not effected by this ruling, as the corps of cadets at VPI could/does fill this role. The thing denied to women prior to this ruling is the "strong bond" of VMI grads, and access to them as a networking tool. I expect they will not gain that for years, even with this ruling. They had a better chance at acceptance into the network through VWIL. **************************** **************************** We should keep in mind that, regardless of how we view or interpret the Constitution on this, we are operating in an environment where perception is everything and substance is nothing. I think we can always legally defend our positions well. But there's a political and public opinion factor that is unfortunatley co-mingled with (and impacts)the legal. Our efforts should also be focused on public relations & PR. We need to massively sell these issues that we see to the public, to build a majority opinion. We did an admirable job of presenting he factual (and can always do so), but maybe we should also attempt to influence the courts from other directions, such as growing and educating public opinion from our standpoint. **************************** Comments: Thomas Jefferson observed that a government which would allow a "supreme court" to issue a legal ruling while allowing no recourse would constitute a despotism. God help us.

**************************** I believe that admission criteria of a state supported school and of a diversified integrated state system of higher education should have been determined by popular vote within the Commonwealth of Virginia rather than by the Federal Court. VMI's mission is to prepare citizen soldiers for the state of Virginia, not the federal government. Differences exist beyond the mission statements of the VMI and the Service Academy's as well as the Citadel. But the fundamental difference that was ignored by the courts was that Virginia offered two existing options (VPISU coed, VMI all male) to receive military education and was attempting to present a third viable alternative at Mary Baldwin (all female). It is contributions of the past and potential for contributions in the future contributions should be weighted. And this should be determined by the voters of Virginia.

**************************** I wish that a male citizen of VA would sue the State for denying him the opportunity to benifit from the VMI experience in favor of a coeducational experience that is available elswhere.

**************************** Equality of education and quality of education are not serially linked. I won't rehash sour grapes and yap on about how the legal system betrayed us by allowing the few to lay ground over the many. It is interesting in that sports (Wrestling in particular) programs are having the same problems with equality based mandates for funding. Wrestling programs are being canceled in Colleges because the main revenue makers, Football and Basketball, are both male programs. Women's groups are pressuring colleges to have equal amounts of money distributed for female sports programs that goes towards male sports programs. Of course, little to no data is being gathered as to the participation and interest in women's programs this new revenue is generating. Also, there is no look at demographics of males vs. females participating in extracurricular sports after high school. Just flat rates being demanded. Reading the national wrestling mags there is usually an article or two about this phenomenon. I believe that Temple and Villanova are two such places where that occurred. So now, just as 40 young men cannot wrestle so that five more women get field hockey scholarships, so will a few women have the benefit of a new educational experience (VMI coed) and a lot of young men will be deprived of an educational experience (Old same sex VMI). Anyway, I appreciate the information. I am highly interested in keeping up to speed with legal precedents that may impact the Institute, so keep em coming. Thanks, **************************** Comments: Radical Feminism is not about equal rights, it is about power - who has it and who doesn't. Feminist seek to seize power away from a male dominated power structure. In VMI's case, we are an all male institution which represents everything they oppose: all male, military, conservative, traditional.

VMI's loss of its court case establishes the fundamental precedent that while the government cannot force private institutions to admit women, the government can coerce publicly funded institutions to conform to radical liberalism. That is why the Boy Scouts now has women in its ranks. The Government has strayed away from protecting the common welfare, toward protecting individual rights. Unfortuantely, they determine which parts of the Bill of Rights need protecting. This is also why radical conservatives are committing acts of violence against the government, to everyone's detriment.

We need to be part of a conservative revolution to return America to its traditional values through due process of law and the ballot box. As long as liberals control our schools and universities, and the White House, nothing will change. Judge Robert Bork has published a book titled "Sliding toward Gomorrha", which discusses this issue. I highly recommend it.

You may publish this with my name attached.

Jack V Barnhill VMI '78 **************************** Interesting point.. People are beavering away at assimilation.. (I love that Borg term) and don't have time to entertain that thought process... I frankly wonder if the Cal dedision that has been upheld by a Federal Court is going to make it to the supreme court as the VMI case did.. Something about the CNN factor is at work in this one..

**************************** I, too, am profoundly disappointed and strongly disagree with the Supreme Court's decision, knowing that it was based upon politics rather than the merits of the case. But it's the law. That doesn't mean we still can't lobby the powers that be for some form of relief, but saying that the 14th Ammendment doesn't apply to women since they were not considered full US citizens in 1868, or that this decision in some way violates my religious beliefs or my constitutional rights is absurd. Those of us who simply cannot stomach this decision should by all means do whatever they can within acceptable political and legal avenues to have this ruling reversed or nullified. However, in doing so, I would hope that they care enough about the VMI that they are trying to save that they do not undo its hard-earned image as a class institution and reduce it to just another bunch of right-wing, single-issue extremists. **************************** **************************** John, I find your "manifestos" very interesting, and I, just for the record, strongly opposed the admission of women to VMI. What I am confused about is what are you advocating? The Supreme Court decision is not subject to appeal (hence SUPREME Court). I was as upset, although not surprised, by the ruling. We live in very "politically correct" times, and it does appear, more often in recent years, that the lunatics are running the asylum, BUT, I really do not see the point in ruminating over the Supreme Court decision. It is a done deal, and I firmly believe that we, as alumni and as honorable men, need to do whatever we can to ensure that the assimilation of women into the Corps is as successful as possible. **************************** I would never have believed that I might live to see the day when "feminized" VMI alumni would vote as some on the Board of Visitors did to admit women to the VMI; yet it was done.

I hope that the votes of such Board members evidence the early onset of Alzheimers disease and not the plain betrayal of what VMI has stood for since its founding but I am not encouraged in any such belief.

All VMI men who remain clear thinking know intuitively what result the admission of women will have on the Corps -- and all of the psychobable advanced to the contrary will not change that self-evident truth.

It would have been far better to try to go private; but if that were not to be done, it would have been better to let the VMI pass into history --- merge the physical plant into some other school and abandon the name --- with the dignity she so richly deserved. It would have been more humane that way than to watch her, like a wounded animal struggling to stay on its feet after being mortally wounded, try to accept a state of affairs she neither asked for nor deserved. Her death should have been quick if she was not to live, and like the Confederate veterans of old.... As it is, we'll all probably just live out our days grieving over the death of her true spirit while we watch from the sidelines as the embodiment of a "new and improved VMI", maybe, "VMI Lite" fraudulently takes her place and assumes her reputation. Disgraceful.

Best Regards, **************************** Judge Robert> Bork has published a book titled "Sliding toward Gomorrha", which discusses this issue. I highly recommend it.

The title is "Slouching towards Gemorrah" - and it is well worth the read.

**************************** Comments: I, like many of my fellow alumni, disagree with the Supreme Court's ruling which overturned the findings of all lower courts. However, all the belly aching in the world will not change the future for VMI. Women will be admitted this Fall. VMI will do what no other military school had done, that is, treat women exactly the way men are treated. It won't be easy but VMI will get it right. Your correlary between prop 209's dismissal of quotas/set asides for minorities and the VMI decision does not make a great deal of sense. While I agree that VMI should have remained all-male as a Single-sex/military education option, I don't agree that the Supreme Court viewed their decision as some sort of affirmative action for women. The basis for the decision was more on the grounds of taxpayers being denied access to a public institution. The best thing that We The People can do is tell our congressmen and senators to block the appointment of liberal judges, impeach judges which overstep thier bounds, and retire the democratic party as an anachronism of the failed socialist movement.

**************************** Unfortunatly, the die has been cast. I dont think that women will ever leave unless we toughen the admissions policies. Even then they would be able to get in on precedence. What we need to worry about is the preservation of the Ratline and the entire VMI experience. Regards, **************************** comments: I'd be interested in any discussion that follows. **************************** Comments: Keep trying to keep VMI single sex.. **************************** I'm not sure where this is going; however, I responded to your questionnaire anyhow. While I don't agree with the decision to make VMI coed, the decision has been made by the highest court in the land. I don't see what recourse we have at this point. I do feel that the current administration at VMI is doing an excellent job at an unenviable task. They are certainly handling the situation better than the Citadel which seems to outdo itself with each new blunder.

I also feel that VMI will persevere and will emerge triumphant in the long run by producing even better graduates. The Federals forced the Institute to start over from scratch once before and VMI was able to bounce back. I'm sure that VMI can do it again. **************************** This political correctness stuff has got to end. Equal opportunity never means equal outcome. I do not expect some kind of miracle or divine deliverance from a bad decision--We can't go any higher than the Supreme Court. I guess we have to live with the damage now. I am most disappointed in the fact that our Virginia legislature lacked the moral courage to defeat this before it left the state and went to the Federal government. We all know that the Federal Government shouldn't meddle in the affairs of a state. I promised two years ago to contribute to the latest campaign, and I am honor bound to do so, but after that, I shan't give to something I no longer believe in. **************************** It is damn scary to read and hear these things. We, as VMI grads, must find a way to pressure the administration to never touch, tinker, improve or any other PC type word on the core values of VMI. The most important thing to me from

VMI, other than the general experience, was the Honor System. Once the Honor Court is diminished in any form or fashion, we are lost. **************************** The survey is helpful and sheds light on several things. It also prompts the need for additional information or clarifications. For example, it would be great to know the break out of those answering the survey, specifically, the the percent WP alumni answering that experienced single-sex education (prior to the transition to co-ed) and those that never did. Moreover, I would personally weigh comments from those that experienced both environments (and assumably the transition), greater than those that never experienced single-sex education. There are other areas or fundamental differences that should also be considered with this survey. I have been able to keep in touch with several friends who attended either WP or USNA while I was at VMI and we used to frequently compare notes. As a point of reference, the one comparison that always manage to stir me was the difference in "Honor Code philosophy". An example, that at least two WP grads conveyed to me: I was informed by them that having your lights on in barracks after taps was against the regs much like VMI, but if a cadet tried to cover their door up or prevent noticeable light from showing through, it was considered an honor violation based on the grounds of deception. Myself and these WP'ers often debated about this supposed honor violation. My point, likely shared by VMI alumni, is that it is breaking reg which carries an institute penalty with it, and that it only becomes an honor violation when a cadet lies, cheats, or steals about it. They adamantly disagreed with kind of conclusion, citing the similarity between cheating and deception. VMI alumni would also likely take issue with this concept because of the VMI honor code philosophy that "using a cadet's honor against him" is an incorrect way to implement or enforce the honor system. Aside from the details of the above example, my point is this: there is a difference in "Honor Code philosophy" that should be considered when using the academies as a source of qualitative assessments for potential honor system impacts. My comments do not go as far to say that one honor system is better than the other, but should be considered when we use this valuable resource.

Thanks for the info, **************************** Let me first say I am dead set against women attending VMI. I truly believe being forced to admit women to VMI will change the Institute (for the worse) forever. And, while I really didn't give a damn about the Institute when I was there, I have since come to appreciate and embrace everything the Institute and the VMI 'man' stands for and I am one proud SOB to wear this ring.

Having said all that however, I believe it is time we put all this crap behind us, solute smartly like we were all taught in first two weeks at the "I" and get on with successfully implementing the Supreme Court's decision. I think the best way we can basically show the nation what VMI is all about (let's face it, we have received national recognition now) is to show we can implement the decision with minimum changes to the Institute. I must admit, I am very leary about these minimum changes and I will NOT tolerate any change at all to the Honor Code. I also think we are going about this ordeal in an orderly, deliberate fashion which should help alleviate the culture shock experienced by the Citadel. You can bet we will have our problems -- that's a definite -- however, I think the courage, integrity and pride with which we are implementing this decisison will enable us to swiftly address these problems.

I sincerely appreciate receiving these e-mails because I am very interested in other opinions, especially from individuals who have actually experienced this integration of women. However, I think it's time we press on and support the Institute as best we can to successfully implement this decision (mistake).

**************************** I was thumbing through the Pentagon Early Bird and ran across the New York Times article, "The Man With the Plan: 'You Learn What to Avoid", by Willliam H. Honan. Several things caught my attention in this article that has reinforced my pride in the Institute and leads me to believe we have the right Superintendent for this time in our history. **************************** John :

Have you read Robert Bork's book "Slouching Towards Gomorrah"? Check it out. He gives a good synopsis of radical feminism and the church. Share it with Dan if he hasn't read it. **************************** I don't believe that the admission of women at West Point had a direct nor indirect impact on their Honor Code. I believe they betrayed themselves. It's possible that over the past 3 decades, West Point decided to 'tolerate' some actions and didn't have the courage or honor to do the right thing. "Standards" are lowered to attract candidates and the admission of women did not. Even VMI has to use creative recruiting to attract prospective cadets. It has become too difficult to encourage or convince a 'child of the 90's' to embrace the challenges that VMI has to offer. We accepted them. We can visit the Institute today and witness the 'softening' of VMI's traditions. Did this change the fundamental mission of VMI? I think not! Is it honest to say that men & women receive a different 'education'? Yes it is. For that matter, each male cadet at VMI will receive a different 'education' than the next class or Brother Rat. Every person's experience will be different. Will this impact the nation? I think not! I do have a concern about 'political correctness'. Society has its own set of rules for men & women, even between races & cultures {duh..} VMI's society is obviously very different and that is what separates us from other colleges & other military academies. The harsh living conditions is an important part of the VMI 'education'. It gives a cadet the sense of accomplishment and the capacity to tackle any given situation. Political correctness can be detrimental, but human respect & common sense are expected. Any behavior, such as incidents that took place at the Citadel, CAN NOT be tolerated. "Boys will be boys..." I think not!!! I'm very interested to see what will happen. I hope that we {VMI} will embrace this new challenge and show the nation and set a new standard. If the new VMI Keydet happens to where a skirt while on GP, and she represents herself, the Corps of Cadets, the Institute, and you and I honorable, then we all should be able to hold our head high. OLD YELL, ARE YOU READY... Ok, I'm finish preaching... **************************** I think, upon looking at the statistical data, one must be cautious. There is some possible pitfalls to the results and the way the survey was conducted (i.e., the way the questions were phrased, etc) that could bias the overall outlook of the data. For example, item number 8 may or may not be directly related to the admission of women. VMI has in the past few years seen the same shift... more and more cadets are flocking to the Scott Shipp Hall; the physics department nearly lost its funding and faced elimination. On other categories, we have also witnessed a major change in the way the 'stick' is being run in the barracks, the way the final exams are being administered (cadets can no longer schedule their exams on their own), the way cadets now 'bone' himself, etc... all of which could impact, if such a survey were to be taken a year from now, the answers to item 6 and 7.

Perhaps there are other additional fundamental issues that VMI currently face that we should take into account when considering the impact of female admissions. It would be 'scientifically' correct to conduct surveys before (i.e., now) and after (i.e., following year) to narrow down those changes that are really brought forward by the admission of female.

Btw, SC decided not to review the Brown U case (equal funding for sports in educational inst that receive federal funds.. Brown U lost and appealed, but denied). They probably should not have gotten involve with VMI case too. **************************** John

I have a Rat in the class of 2000 who keeps me updated.

He says, they have hired a woman to help the Commandant's Office next year with the women. She now walks through barracks. They are no blinds on the windows, yet she will look in. What would happen next year if a man did that? ****************************

Regardless, I am very interested in the subject and am in total agreement with your letter. I am concerned about the NOW action alert. I would like to forward it to some conservative friends and organizations I am affilliated with...

**************************** John,

Thanks for the letter. It is very discouraging how a minority can steer society to serve their egos, although the majority does not agree with the change. Case and point is the situation at VMI. Why does the Department of Justice wants a preferential treatment and conditions to the upcoming female cadets when the Supreme Court judgement was based upon equality? Double standard is the word and I don't think anybody should be playing around with our country's defense. Unfortunately, the media supports these groups and one of these days our future generations will scorned us for what we had done. Thanks again. **************************** John,

I can't wait to see the finished product! Thanx for the preview. **************************** Whoever you are, thanks so much for sending it.

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ASSASSIN of JFK, Patton, many other Whites

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holocaust denier extraordinaire--denying the Armenian holocaust

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tens of millions of dead Christians

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spearheaded torture & sodomy of all non-jews
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42 dead, mass murderer Goldman LOVED by jews

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the REAL terrorists--not a single one is an Arab

serial killers are all jews

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1000 fold the child of perdition


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