Equal Opportunity in United States Armed Forces: Minorities and Women

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The American Military is widely viewed as a pioneer in bestowing equal opportunity for all of its uniformed members. I am going to study the Equal Opportunity in United States Armed Forces with a particular emphasis on Minorities and Women in the Military. The United States Armed Forces has the most diverse labor force in the World. There are five branches of the United States Armed Forces: Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines, and Coast Guard.

The demographic profile of the all volunteer United States Military has changed dramatically over the last 20 years. The transformation that has occurred in the United States population do not always reflect the changes in the Army's demographical environment. Today's Armed Forces is more representative of the U.S. population of high school and college educated individuals than was the force of long-ago. The military today is very different from the military of 30 to 50 years ago. It was then when the military relied on the draft for personnel and the world conflicts necessitated more troops. The all-volunteer military is now more educated, more family oriented, has a bigger gender mix, and is less white than the draft-era of 30 to 50 years ago. Today's military is also come to grips with such social concerns as the inclusion of gays, the role of women, the well-being of military families, and the transition back into civilian life for reservists and National Guardsmen. The amount of Hispanic soldiers in the military has increased notably, while the percentage of African American soldiers has started to decline after years of being inconsistently high.

Other than the dramatic increase in the number of Hispanics in both the U.S. population and the active-duty military over the past 20 years, the most significant change in the demographics of the military over the same time period is the gender mix. Based on the performances of women in combat support roles during the Persian Gulf War, the Secretary of Defense...
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