The Biden administration announced Tuesday that Rachel Levine, the assistant secretary of health, will be sworn in as a four-star admiral in the US Public Health Service Commissioned Corps.
Levine will not only be the first openly transgender four-star officer in the uniformed services — according to the Biden administration, Levine will also be the “first female four-star admiral” of the health corps.
Allow Cockburn to be the first to congratulate Ms Levine — sorry, Admiral Levine! — on this historic achievement. How inspiring that Rachel, formerly known as Richard, only had to identify as female for about 15 percent of her life before becoming one of the most successful women in the world. No woman has blazed such a trail since Caitlyn Jenner earned Glamour‘s 2015 “Woman of the Year” award less than six months after announcing her new identity.
There are so many great lessons to be learned from Admiral Levine’s quick ascent:
It takes a big set of balls to break glass ceilings.
Anything women can do, biological men pretending to be women can do better.
And Cockburn’s personal favorite:
Women without prostates seldom make history.
Enough about Levine’s identity though — it is not very feminist to elevate women simply because they are women. Cockburn is sure that the Biden administration also took a close look at Admiral Levine’s prior achievements and amazing contributions to public health. For example, pulling her mother out of a nursing home and putting her up in a hotel as Pennsylvania mandated that nursing homes accept COVID-positive patients. Or limiting public access to health data. Then there’s the fact that Pennsylvania has consistently had one of the highest COVID death rates (deaths divided by total cases) in the country. Girlboss alert!
Cockburn imagines that women everywhere are saluting their new feminist hero. They should also be saying a big “thank you” to the Biden administration for recognizing that smashing the patriarchy sometimes requires a heavy dose of testosterone.