by LIBAN YOUSUF
Since 1994, women have been officially banned from taking direct combat roles in the military. That all changed last week when Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta announced that the ban has been lifted and roles like artillery, infantry and armor are now open to both men and women.
This new move by the Obama Administration is part of a series of moves aimed at making the military more gender neutral. In 2011, the Obama Administration announced that the controversial “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy was also lifted allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military.
Are these moves enough for a more equal military? Congressman Charles B. Rangel doesn’t believe so. According to Congressman Rangel, reinstating the compulsory military draft will reduce the burden of sacrificing and defending this nation that is currently only shouldered by less than 1% of the American population. More importantly, Congressman Rangel argues that the reinstatement of the draft will make the government more accountable in deciding where to send our troops for combat. According to Congressman Rangel, a draft requiring all capable young men and women to service in the military will cause us to think twice rather than committing our troops to conflicts with little accountability.
Is Congressman Rangel correct that the reinstatement of the draft is the next step in a truly equal military? Leave your comments below.