FORT HOOD, Texas — Army 1st Lt. Gina Caffey, the first woman selected to attend the Maneuver Captain's Career course in Fort Benning, Ga., is mere days away from being crushed when she discovers the tragic lack of ponies the modern Cavalry Branch offers to its female officers, sources say.
"I plan to name mine 'Death Sparkle,'" said Caffey, dropping a bottle of Mane 'n' Tail into her rucksack next to the 12 pairs of socks required on the packing list.
Caffey, a Kentucky native, petitioned her chain of command to rebranch from AG, citing her childhood spent at Heartland stables learning to ride western. She remains completely and utterly, not to mention blissfully, unaware that the modern day cavalry has hardly any horses except for seven small, ceremonial detachments, and no ponies whatsoever.
"It's really strange that this packing list requires a kevlar helmet and not a proper riding one," said Caffey. "Maybe once we get our sweet-ass Stetsons we'll just wear those."
Soldiers in the cavalry must purchase their own wide-brimmed hats, and they are not manufactured by Stetson.
Caffey added, "I can't wait to visit the tack area at supply."
"The decision to allow women in the cavalry was forced upon us," said Maj. Gen. Michael A. Bills, 1st Cavalry Division Commander. "We'll support the decision to move women into combat roles, but only if they can ride their tanks side saddle."
Though most have lauded the decision to allow women in the cavalry, some say the decision is too little too late.
"You can call this a move towards equality," said National Committee on Women's Rights spokewoman Leah Jepson. "But women were excluded from 100% of the pony years."