Virginia State Senator Claims Men in Military Training Can’t Keep themselves from Sexually Harassing Women

Warren E. Barry, a 63-year-old Republican Fairfax, Virginia Senator has claimed that the Virginia Military Institute should not admit women because the coexistence of men and women in the military inevitably results in sexual harassment. Barry also commented that admitting the women will overburden courts already flooded with sexual harassment suits. Senator Janet Howell, a Democratic Senator from Fairfax responded to Barry’s comments by saying that, “It’s hard not to be offended when someone insults your gender and they try to limit your potential…the [teenage Senate pages] are coming up to me and saying they couldn’t believe he said what he did.” Former State Senator Emilie F. Miller pointed out that only 30% of graduates from military institutes go on to careers in the Armed Services and said, “The only barrier is the intellectual one, which is, men are scared that when women go in there, they are going to best them intellectually.”

Two women Citadel cadets and their families who alleged that the women were hazed during their first semester at the South Carolina school met with a federal judge on January 8, 1997. Federal Judge C. Weston Houck is overseeing the integration of four women cadets into the formerly all-male Citadel met privately with the women and families to discuss security if they return to the school. He assured them that, “We will be able to put into place some reasonable measures to make sure it’s likely they won’t come to harm.”


The Washington Post - January 10, 1997

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