One of the most interesting debates going on within society these days is the right of females to participate in the military. As a male in the United States, every 18 year old is required by law to sign up for the Selective Service – should a war break out and draft be needed. Historically, females have never been required to sign up and until very recently, females weren’t allowed on the front-lines of battlefields.
As someone who considers myself an anti-war activist, one of the more surprising shows of activism I have seen recently can from women’s rights activist arguing on behalf of gender equality in the military. She was outraged that law makers were trying to block a bill that would have required females to sign up for the Selective Service.
It surprised me that someone would so passionately argue to be required to sign up for military service when they did not have to be. I would think most men these days, if left to their own choice, would not sign up for the Selective Service if they did not have to be -never mind lobby on behalf of it.
However, my female activist friend does have a point. If females truly want equality, technically they should be required by law to do the all things men have to so, such as sign up for the draft.
With this aside for a moment, this brings us into the heated debate over women actively serving combat rolls in the military. Did you know? Women ‘s full access to the front-line of battlefields (infantry) didn’t occur until December 2015. Only this April, Kristen Griest became the first female officer to ever lead troops into combat. The archaic system never realized a woman’s equality until very modern times. Jordan on the other hand remains a world leader in training female combat troops.
Despite the advancement and success of women on the front lines, there are still many people in society who are opposed to women in the service altogether. I remember a Congressmen saying what if a women is serving on the frontlines and a 6’2″ 225lb Marine gets injured and needs to be carried off – a 5’8′ 145 lb woman couldn’t carry him off? People like him argue that physiologically speaking, men are naturally built stronger then females – what it is. More recently, critics now point to fact liket 85% of women fail the U.S. Marine Test – compared to only 2.7% of males.
The U.S. Senate has voted, in principal, to include women in the draft – the bill has not yet been signed into law. For some political perspective on the matter, the Republicans control the Senate and typically speaking, more Republicans are against women on the front-lines than for it. But, as this law has now turned into a gender equality debate, not a physiological functionality debate, also taking into consideration the recent successes of women in combat, it appears females may very well soon have to start signing up for the United States draft.
What are your thoughts on these two issues: The debate about women equal service/combat roles in the military and women in general being lawfully required to sign up for a draft in the future?
Sources: NPR, The New York Times, Marine Corps Times, Politico