A Miscall to Arms by Andrew A. Sicree

Feature

A Miscall to Arms

Why Selective Service for Women Is Immoral by Andrew A. Sicree

In June 2016, the U.S. Senate voted with broad bi-partisan support to require young women to register for the military draft. The House of Representatives was expected to vote likewise soon afterward, and President Obama would surely have happily signed such a modification to the Selective Service Act. Had the law passed, it would have forced women aged 18 to 25 to register with the government, and it would have made them susceptible to conscription in the future. But despite widespread support for the provision among the leadership of the armed forces—then Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James said, "I think women should register for the selective service. I see no reason not to"—it was stripped out of the House version of the National Defense Authorization Act.

By November 2016, both houses of Congress had quietly dropped it from the final version of the bill. Nevertheless, there is still need for vigilance because the issue could re-emerge at any time. When the federal government first began moving forward with these plans last year, there was little public awareness that such a drastic change in the law was even afoot. Americans should not be caught unawares again.

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