Expository Essay - Women in the Military

Essay by jbm109College, UndergraduateA+, July 2008

download word file, 5 pages 5.0

The history of women in the United States military is both interesting and surprising and begins in the time of the Revolutionary War. The very first woman to join the military was Deborah Sampson who joined the Continental Army under the name of Robert Shurtlief. She disguised her gender and changed her name in order to enlist in the Continental Army as women were forbid to have any participation in the military ("Teacherlink", n.d.). During that time women had to be content with what the government stated that they could and could not do. However, there have been drastic changes since the Revolutionary War. The Department of Defense has allowed women to enlist in the United States Military and has issued many different regulations for women and men regarding their appearance, conduct, and functional roles. While there is no official bias towards women in the military, certain views, regulations for women, and combat roles for women are different from those for men due to military rules and regulations.

Just as the Revolutionary War was the catalyst to women joining the military it was also the catalyst for women to face certain bias views. One of these views is that if women were allowed in direct combat it would cause readiness and morale issues, higher injury rates, unexpected pregnancies, and disciplinary issues (Donnelly, 2008). Another of these purported claims is that women would cause a delay in troop movement by needing extended time to use the restroom facilities. Additionally women have been viewed as weak, emotional, and lacking the upper body strength that certain military jobs require. The standing view of women for many years has been that of the "weaker sex", one in need of protection and not one who could indeed protect the country. Further, claims have been made...