Women in Combat Roles
Quote :WASHINGTON — Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta is lifting the military's official ban on women in combat, which will open up hundreds of thousands of additional front-line jobs to them, senior defense officials said Wednesday.
The groundbreaking decision overturns a 1994 Pentagon rule that restricts women from artillery, armor, infantry and other such combat roles, even though in reality women have frequently found themselves in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, where more than 20,000 have served. As of last year, more than 800 women had been wounded in the two wars and more than 130 had died.
Defense officials offered few details about Mr. Panetta's decision but described it as the beginning of a process to allow the branches of the military to put the change into effect. Defense officials said Mr. Panetta had made the decision on the recommendation of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
For those that aren't sure if I'm being sarcastic or not, I am not being sarcastic. I often bring up inequality in the selective service laws as a potential justification for other gender discrimination by law. Usually, in those cases I am playing devil's advocate and simply pointing out how the US sees gender discrimination. Specifically, this would greatly undercut the argument I have made for allowing states to ban same gender marriages.
Quote :In the majority opinion, Justice William Rehnquist wrote "[t]he existence of the combat restrictions clearly indicates the basis for Congress' decision to exempt women from registration. The purpose of registration was to prepare for a draft of combat troops. Since women are excluded from combat, Congress concluded that they would not be needed in the event of a draft, and therefore decided not to register them."