April 7, 2013
Women fighting in combat is a topic that has stirred a lot of controversy in the last few months. This comes about from the uplifting of the ban that did not let women fight in combat. Though the Women’s Armed Services Integration Act in 1948, created a corps for women in every branch of military, it was also the beginning of when women would not be included in combat. (Mackenzie 1,) Whenever the topic of war comes to mind, the one’s usually pictured in war are men. People tend to forget that men are not the only ones involved in war or the military. “In January 1994, a memorandum from then Secretary of Defense Les Aspin rescinded the "risk rule" barring women from any positions that could expose them to direct combat, hostile fire, or capture; the rule was replaced by the "direct ground combat assignment rule," which more narrowly tailored the restriction to frontline combat positions.” (Mackenzie, 1) This would completely change the way women in the military would be. Though not as big in number, women still do have a significant role in the military today. They can join the Military but they can have no part in combat. This limits the kinds of jobs that women can have. Woman in the United States want to feel equal to the man and the stigma that war is a “man’s thing “ has created a lot of controversy, especially in the society that we live in now. Women in our society are breaking away from the boundaries set from the past generations. Women are now taking and seeking roles that were once considered only for men. Just like in our society, women are trying to advance in the military. Advancing in the military, not only has to be being able to fight in combat, but also reaching some of the highest military rankings. The leap for women being able to fight in combat came this past January, when the United State’s Department of Defense, uplifted the ban on women being able to fight in combat. A woman representing her country by joining the military is something that not only takes great sacrifice, but courage as well, and they deserve the utmost respect. If a woman is willing to risk her life for the sake of her country, just like the men, should be allowed to partake in combat. War is much physical as it is mental. Opponents argue that women are physically not capable to succeed out in the battlefield. If a soldier is not physically capable to perform, they could possibly endanger themselves or their fellow soldiers. Soldiers out on the battle field carry various items like electronic equipment, weapons, ammunition, heavy body armor, and enough water, weighing anywhere between fifty to hundred pounds. There is no denying that women on average do have forty to fifty percent less upper-body strength compared to men, but it is not one hundred percent certain that certain women are not fully capable. The statistic that women are a lot weaker in their upperbody comes up a lot, but it is stretched from the truth. “The physical fitness argument, which tends to focus on differences between average male and female bodies, is also undermined by the fact that women who join the military tend to be more fit than the average American. Additional training and conditioning further decrease the gap between female and male service members, and evidence indicates that women usually benefit substantially from fitness-training programs.” (Mackenzie, 1) To join the military there is this mental and physical toughness that one has to have or has to overcome by the time that they are about to be deployed. Yes, there is some women that are not physically capable to perform in the military, but at the same time, there are many men as well. Needless to say, there is a certain kind of person that is needed when joining the military. This goes beyond male and female. Character has a lot more to do with the success of an individual than the sex does. Regardless of this, the opposition still...
Citations: Mackenzie, M. H. (2012). Let Women Fight. Foreign Affairs, 91(6), 32-42.
Tom V. B. and Jim M, (2013, January 23). USA Today http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/01/23/panetta-women-combat-pentagon/1859221/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don 't_ask,_don 't_tell
Mackenzie, M. H. (2013,January 23) http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/138200/megan-h-mackenzie/let-women-fight
Hallman, L. (2013, March 6) End of Combat Ban Will Give Women Recognition They Deservehttp://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/138200/megan-h-mackenzie/let-women-fight
Pew Research (2013, January 29) http://www.people-press.org/2013/01/29/broad-support-for-combat-roles-for-women/1/
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