Lifting the combat ban could be counterproductive

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AJ Edwards

On Jan. 24, 2013, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta lifted the ban on women serving in combat. I personally believe that this is a very bad idea.

I’m not a chauvinist, I just believe that this could be counterproductive.

The main reason I’m against women serving on the front lines is because of men. I believe that due to the relationships that we have with our mothers, spouses, sisters, etc., we are not prepared to handle the psychological trauma of seeing a woman maimed or killed. I was an infantry Marine, and can attest that seeing a woman or child hurt is the worst thing in the world.

The second reason why I’m against women serving on the front lines has to do with physical limitations. The Marine Corps had two women attempt to go through Infantry School in 2012; both failed to complete the course. Also, on the front lines it’s not a guarantee that soldiers will be able to maintain proper hygiene, which could lead to fatal illnesses like Toxic Shock Syndrome (which, according to the Mayo Clinic, is a bacterial infection sometimes caused by superabsorbent tampons or staph infections).

Another issue is sexual assault. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, in 2012 almost one-quarter of women serving in a combat zone reported being sexually assaulted. These are horrific acts that need to be addressed and resolved before we even think about putting female soldiers no the front lines where there is even more danger.

While I don’t believe women should be on the front lines, I’m not saying that I disagree with their roles in indirect combat jobs. In Afghanistan, we had a female helicopter pilot bail us out of some trouble, which saved lives.

I believe that women and men are equal. I believe that there are things that women can do that men cannot. I just don’t believe that we’re ready to send our daughters off to the front lines yet.