US women may soon achieve a level of equality not everyone wants – ending 40 years of all-male precedent by becoming eligible to be conscripted in a time of war, writes James Jeffrey.
One of the starkest ways American women have achieved equality with men in the workplace has occurred in the military.
The decision five years ago by then Defense Secretary Ashton Carter to open all positions in the armed forces to women – including combat duty – was largely applauded as a necessary step that benefited the military and society.
But this levelling of the military playing field has led to a more divisive consequence – at the end of March the government’s National Commission on Military, National and Public Service declared it is now time that women become eligible for the military draft – the procedure by which individuals are chosen for conscription – just like their male counterparts between the ages of 18 and 25.
Currently, all male US citizens in that age bracket, regardless of where they live, and male immigrants – documented and undocumented – residing within the US, must register through the Selective Service System.
Women aged 18-25 could soon become conscription-eligible for the first time in US history.