Feminism has played a major part in obtaining the right for women to vote, free speech and the right to work. However, despite the vast improvements that have been made over the years, we still have problems with issues ranging from pro-choice to equal pay. But after an intense debate within the Senate, the role of women in the military will probably affect American views and families.
The Senate passed a bill requiring women for the first time to register for the draft. Despite the strong opposition towards the decision from conservative lawmakers and interest groups, there was an equal amount of support from Republican leaders and women in support of the draft according to the New York Times.
“The fact is, every single leader in this country, both men and women, members of the military leadership, believe that it’s fair since we opened up all aspects of the military to women that they would also be registering for Selective Services,” said Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona and chairman of the Armed Service Committee a reported on the New York Times.
On June 14th, under the bill passed by the Senate, women that turn 18 on or after Jan 1, 2018 are required to register for Selective Service, just as their male counterparts do. Failure to do so will result in loss of federal aid, and scholarships. Women who turned 18 before then are not affected and neither are their current aid arrangements according to the New York Times.
Feminists and feminist organizations see it as the next logical step in better representation of women in all aspects of the military, seeing as how there are women in many active roles while participating in civil service. But others see the bill as America taking away a woman’s right to choose, just as how they have tried to do so in the debate between pro-choice and pro-life.
“To say these women are not patriots because they don’t have a gun in their hands is to dishonor them…The argument that women must be drafted because they have an equal responsibility to protect this nation is a foolish notion. The duty of women to keep our families together and our society working while our sons, husbands, and fathers fight the enemy is just as valuable, just as heroic, and just as patriotic as what the men do,” said Journalist Denise C McAllister to The Federalist, “This is an ironic point because advocates of drafting women think they’re honoring women by saying they should be forced to register with Selective Service. But being forced to fight a war is not an opportunity. It is a responsibility.”
The Supreme Court ruled that women did not have to register for the draft back in 1981, but since all channels of the military have been available for them to participate in, others believe women should be required to register. However, women still struggle with issues such as equal pay and the rights to our bodies. EGL wants your feedback on this decision. Do you think women should be required to register for the military?
Written by: Dominique Williams, Staff Writer, Modern Domestic