The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

January 12, 2013

Military women deserve equality

The Daily Star

---- — Women are already fighting and dying for our country shoulder-to-shoulder with their brothers in uniform on the front lines, but without the formal recognition that is needed for them to advance and obtain the benefits they earned.

Female soldiers have fired lethal weapons, been prisoners of war, operated sophisticated systems and led male soldiers into battle. Today more that 350,000 women serve in our military, women make up 15 percent of the military. They contribute to the military by taking up a variety of jobs, such as military police, IT Specialist, Civil and Public Affairs Specialist and more. Although female service members are not allowed to specialize in any type of combat related M.O.S.

Female soldiers should have the choice and opportunity to specialize in combat arms. Female soldiers have the same mental and physical capacity as men do in combat. The decision to serve in combat should have nothing to do with gender; instead it should have everything to do with whether a person is capable of living up to the expectations of that role.

Of course, infantry is not for every female soldier, just like it’s not for every male soldier. Just like male soldiers, female soldiers would have to be vigorously trained. Any female soldier who is qualified and chooses to defend her country should be allowed to do so.

Kristin Heidenreich