<p>Female military member calls out male colleague after he gives her a thumbs down during training</p>

Female military member calls out male colleague after he gives her a thumbs down during training

Female soldier calls out male colleague’s behaviour in viral TikTok: ‘A glimpse of what it’s like’

‘Boys don’t know how to handle strong women,’ one viewer writes

Chelsea Ritschel
New York
Monday 20 September 2021 02:55
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A female member of the military has called out a male colleague after she filmed him giving her a thumbs down while she performed drills.

In the video, which was posted earlier this month by a woman who goes by the username @solesndsouls on TikTok, she can be seen climbing a rope while dressed in military fatigues.

In the clip, which she captioned: “A glimpse of what it’s like being a military woman minding her business”, a male soldier dressed in a similar uniform can be seen walking up to the rope and giving a thumbs down before walking away.

The video has gone viral on TikTok, where it has been viewed more than 4.5m times, with many viewers expressing their outrage on the woman’s behalf.

“Dude outed all his insecurities without saying a single word,” one person commented, while another said: “Don’t be shy. Drop his name and rank. Maybe his chain of command.”

Someone else added: “Boys don’t know how to handle strong women.”

The clip also prompted other women in the military to share their own experiences in the armed forces, with another person commenting: “I feel every female in the service can relate to this.”

In the comments, the woman also confirmed that she knows the man in question, replying to one commenter who questioned whether the gesture had anything to do with her: “If it didn’t I wouldn’t have posted it. I know this man. I’m not an idiot.”

In a follow-up video, the US Army member addressed a comment from one viewer who suggested that she should have expected harassment as a Black woman in the military.

“What this person is suggesting is that, as a Black woman or a Black person in the military, being Black in the military comes with harassment and it should be expected,” she said. “And as a Black woman or as a woman in the military, I would be a fool to walk into any situation and think that there wouldn’t be some sort of unfair treatment or not expect it at all.

“But, as a leader, who is also a woman and is also a Black woman, it is my responsibility to call out those unfair behaviours, treatments, whatever, and make sure they cease to exist. Just because they are there doesn’t mean that they are supposed to be there.”

The soldier concluded the clip explaining that, while she acknowledges that the military’s past “suggests that anyone who isn’t a white male will face some sort of struggle,” it is important to continue fighting against this expectation.

“If we are working towards a future full of equality, then it is my job to call out behaviours that single out people that look like me just because I look like me,” she said.

The Independent has contacted @solesndsouls for comment.

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