Women In The Military Essay

2687 words - 11 pages


Women in the Military:
Controversy of Direct Combat
Strayer University

Women in the Military:
Controversy of Direct Combat
Section I: Introduction
Women have been in the military, or associated with combat for decades. “The most famous example of the ability of a woman to not only be involved in combat but to lead forces is that of Joan of Arc's legendary battles leading the French army when she was just a teenager.”(Gerber 1) Women have been involved in espionage and even posed as male soldiers during the Civil War. Conflicts such as, WWI, WWII, Panama, and as recent as our current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan women have served with ...view middle of the document...

Gender Norm
Physically men have been perceived to be stronger and have always been expected to leave the home and provide for the family. Women in contrast have always been expected to manage the home and raise children. Our society has always placed the main responsibility to protect and provide for the family unit on the male. The female gender has been expected to be subservient and reliant. Staying home nurturing the children and building a home were the social norms that our society expected women to be. Women were not expected to display what would be thought of as masculine tendencies. Playing football was not acceptable for a young girl where as playing jump rope was acceptable. “Most of the women who served in the military before the Viet Nam war didn’t tell anyone about it. Not their friends, neighbors, and sometimes the families didn’t even know about their military service. When they came home from the war, the United States did not want to acknowledge the part they played in it.”(Casey 1) Our society has defined roles that both men and women have had to fill.
Unacceptable Danger
Placing women or allowing women to be placed in a situation that may lead to rape is unacceptable to any reasonable person. The fact of the matter is that men have just as much of a chance of being raped as women. “They could be raped, tortured and killed or any number of maladies could befall them.. In fact, there were two women taken prisoner in the Desert Storm war. Army Major Rhonda Cornum, who was taken as a prisoner of war when her Blackhawk helicopter was shot down over Kuwait, stated that she "had been treated no differently from any of the men." (Hoffman 43) Men are also in jeopardy of becoming prisoners of war and being raped, tortured and killed. It does happen to males who are taken prisoner, even if men don’t like to admit it. Men are also raped in the private sector of society and it is becoming much more prevalent, although it is not as widely publicized as when a female is raped.” (Casey 1) Societies for centuries have placed women in a very high regard, and feel that the female gender should be protected and held in high esteem.
Domestic Violence
Another argument against allowing women to participate in direct combat is the family unit will suffer. By virtue of their mission direct combat units are more aggressive than what would be expected of support units. Direct combat units main mission is to close and destroy the enemy. The environment within these units tends to build on an individual’s aggressive nature. This type of environment would cause women to be more aggressive and in turn would possibly cause men to be more aggressive toward them. Increased domestic violence could result but has not yet been proven for obvious reasons. Direct combat unit spend excessive time in the field training as opposed to support elements that spend less time away from home.
Impact on the Family Unit
A criticism concerning the...

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