Could the new rule be the end of "pink it and shrink it"?
It's a common assumption among marketers: Want to make a tech product appealing to women? Make it small, guys, and by all means make it pink.
Pink-it-and-shrink-it isn't always the way to ladies' hearts or wallets, of course, but it's often an easy -- if fairly ridiculous and insulting -- route for producers to take in their marketing. Hey, ladies! We made this manly product accessible to you! It's now cute and small and bubble-gum pink! You are welcome!
I mention this because today brought this news: Defense Secretary Leon Panetta will lift the Pentagon's ban on women serving in combat, meaning that women -- officially -- will now be able to serve on the front lines of battle. "The time has come to rescind the direct combat exclusion rule for women and to eliminate all unnecessary gender-based barriers to service," Army General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, wrote in a memo that reportedly informed Panetta's decision.
This is a big decision, obviously, with big implications for the military and for society and for gender parity as a general goal. It is one more step forward in history's long march toward equity. But there's a chance it could mean something else, too, something EVEN MORE IMPORTANT: the death of dainty pink gun. The very, very welcome death.