Opening Up Combat Roles To Women Argumentative Essay
In the United States, the number of women in the American Army is noticeably increasing. It is evident that women are beating their traditional in the feminism role in the military operations. However, opponents suggest that women should be restricted from military participation because of various cohesion factors. Such factors include physical ability, forced intimacy and lack of privacy, traditional perception, sexual harassment, the risk of pregnancy. Contrary the studies suggest that all this factors are just a scapegoat for gender biasedness in the military operations.
For the past year, the American Army has increased the number of Military Occupational Specialties (MOS), which has provided combat opportunity for women. Although in women have not been linked with the combat soldiers, the statistics show that women are increasingly serving in the army more than any time in American History. However, women are not yet involved in the ground combat position making them unequal in the military. For example, according to the information released by Department of Defense, the number of female soldiers deployed in contingency operations in Afghanistan and Iraq reached 299, 548. The number of the female soldiers was counted from 2001, after the terror attack in United States to February 2013 (Burrelli, 2013). For this period of approximately twelve years over 800 females, soldiers have been wounded while 130 have been reported dead. Women have shown heroism in the combat roles in the United States and two of them has received Silver Star medals. Therefore, this paper analyzes whether women should be restricted from the combat positions.
Women face various critics in their roles as combat soldiers. One of the fundamental weakness, as viewed by the people opposing women integration in the combat, is that the physical make-up of women is not compatible with the combat role. According to the study conducted by Presidential Commission on the Assignment of Women in the Armed Forces (PCAWAF), the results indicated that women did not satisfy the physical requirement of the ground combat role. The study also added that the women facilitate number of reasons that lessen the unit cohesion. According to Wan (n.d), women cause cohesion problems in the combat unit because they are unable to tolerate physical burdens necessary in the units. Second, women contribute to awkward situations that may be caused by forced intimacy and lack of privacy. Third, the male holds traditional perceptions that it is their duty to protect their female counterparts. Fourth, women are more prone to sexual harassment than men are. Finally, the anticipated sexual relationship might result in pregnancy and hence affect the performance of women.
However, despite all the negative critics on women soldiers, the PCAWAF study indicated that there is evidence that some women have meets the required physical requirements. Therefore, even though there is a majority of women who cannot perform the combat due to their feminism weakness, those who are physically fit should be given an opportunity. According to Baker II (2006), “the awarding of skills should be based on individual ability and not gender” (p.7). He supported his argument by suggesting that a number of women who can out-perform men. For instance, there are men who cannot lift heavy loads while some women can. The other advantage of women is that they are more physiologically fit than men are. For example, Baker II (2006) illustrates that women, in general, weigh less, they are short, have relatively higher content of fat, and have less muscle mass than men. According to the statistic women, have around 75 percent of aerobic capacity to that of men. This is a clear indication that military standards or qualification requirements should not be distinguished based on gender factor.
Studies have also shown that the forced intimacy and the lack of privacy among women may cause tension but has an insignificant impact on the effectiveness of the unit. For example, during the Persian Gulf War, the collaboration of women and men despite the lack of privacy indicated that women have the potential to work with men effectively as a team. Despite the presence of women in the operation, such sharing tents but not beds, the habits and operations were not affected. In addition, although some opponents suggest that women in the military are sexually harassed, the harassments are lower than the civilian sector. Therefore, women experiences lower levels of sexual harassment in military than in the civilian sector. According to Wan (n.d), when women enter into the field that are no traditionally meant for them, they face sabotage and scrutiny. As a result, they are motivated to work harder in order to earn respect for their male counterparts. Therefore, women in military work harder to outperform some of their make counterparts to show them that the abilities are not described by the gender factor.
In conclusion, women should not be restricted to join the military combat because results indicate that some of them are better compared to men. When determining the military requirements, gender factor should not be considered. This is because the argument above indicates that the presence of women in combat unit has an inconsequential impact on the performance as suggested by the opponents. In addition, women who are physically fit should not restricted to join the army because of the others who does not meet qualification. The same case happens to men too.
Wan, S. (n.d.). Women's Role in Combat: Is Ground Combat the Next Frond? University of Hawaii, 4(24), 115-120. Retrieved from http://hilo.hawaii.edu/academics/hohonu/documents/Vol04x24WomensRoleinCombat.pdf
Baker II, H.. (2006). Women in combat: a culture issue. Army War Coll Carlisle Barracks PA. Retrieved from http://www.strategicstudiesinstitute.army.mil/pdffiles/ksil271.pdf
Burrelli, D. F. (2013, May). Women in combat: Issues for Congress. Library of Congress Washington DC Congressional Research Service. Retrieved from https://fas.org/sgp/crs/natsec/R42075.pdf