The Instigator
Grape
Con (against)
Winning
27 Points
The Contender
rrcooper
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points

Exemption of Women from the Selectice Service System

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/16/2011 Category: Society
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,202 times Debate No: 14406
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (8)
Votes (4)

 

Grape

Con

Resolved: Women should be exempt from the Selective Service System of the United States.

Clarifications: By women, I mean persons of the female sex. I do not consider personal conceptions of gender relevant to this debate. I am referring to the entire Selective Service System (SSS from here on), not just the registration, lottery, drafting, or any other particular aspect of it.

I will leave the exact meaning of the word "should" up to discussion. I would prefer that my opponent not simply argue that the word "should" is meaningless because that would render the discussion irrelevant and generally be a waste of time.

Important Rules: The debate will consistent of three rounds, and Round 1 will be used by my opponent to indicate his or her acceptance of the debate and not any relevant agreement or disagreement of terms. This round shall not be used to debate.

Also, my opponent may not argue that the SSS should be done away with entirely or that men should be exempt from it as well. The purpose of this debate is to discuss gender roles and equality, and to argue that no one should be subjuct to the SSS would be counterintuitive to my goal. I realize I could side-step the need for this rule simply by phrasing the resolution differently so as say that men and women be subject to the same requirements, but I prefer a simple resolution and cumbersome rules to the reverse. I also wanted to make it explicit that this is not allowed.

Finally, the forfeiture of any one round will constitute the forfeiture of the debate. In accepting the debate my opponent agrees to this rule.

If you do not know about the SSS, I suggest that Wikipedia is a go place to start for gaining a general understanding of something you are not familar with.

http://en.wikipedia.org......

Additional Comments: This debate is part of a series that I intend to do on gender roles and gender equality. If my opponent sees a good reason to move the topic of the debate away from this in a way other than what I have specifically prohibited above (arguing for the complete abolition of the SSS) than I see no problem with that, although it will probably result in my reposting of the debate afterwards until I get the discussion I am looking for.

I will do another debate about the SSS in general later (arguing for its complete abolition) but that is not what this debate is about.

Best of luck to my opponent, and I hope for a good debate.


rrcooper

Pro

I accept your challenge.
Debate Round No. 1
Grape

Con

Introduction:

Thanks to my opponent for accepting this debate. I hope that we will be able to have a productive dialogue on this issue.


Opening Statements:

My argument is that all citizens share an equal burden in ensuring the future success of their society; the task of upholding and defending civilization cannot fall more heavily on some than others. The United States upholds a law that permits the government to conscript soldiers to supplement the voluntarily enlisted Armed Forces in a time of great need. This requires those able bodied citizens of the appropriate age to risk their survival and physical well being in the defense of the society in which they go about their day to day lives.

Whether or not conscription is ethical or violates the rights of individuals is a serious question, but this does not change the fact that in order to ensure the continued success of a society it is often necessary to wage war against dangerous adversaries. It is obvious that everyone in the United States benefited greatly from the victory over the Axis powers in World War II, a victory that many conscripted soldiers gave their lives for. Why, then, should everyone in the country not be required to contribute equally to such a profoundly important and costly effort as the waging of war?

In the United States, the Selective Service System requires that only male citizens register, and only male citizens can be drafted. For what reason should able bodied women of the same age not be required to make the same sacrafices to ensure the continued existence of their nation? This exemption is, a best, based on antiquated notions of female weakness or the deep-seated delusion that the lives of women are intrinsically more valuable than those of men. There is no practical or ethical reason to support this blatant act of discrimination.


Argument One: Sexual Dimorphism Does Not Play A Significant Role In Military Utility

The go-to argument in defense of male-only conscription is that due to differences between the sexes, only men are useful for military service. This claim is patently ridiculous for a number of reasons. First and foremost, the differences between individuals often outweigh the differences between the sexes. Suppose, for instance, that size is an important factor in whether or not a person is eligible for military service. The average weight of an American male is 190 pounds and the average weight of an American female is 163 pounds [1]. The differences between individuals vary enough that many men weigh less than the average female and many women weigh more than the average male. I weigh only 145 pounds, should I be exempt from conscription on the grounds of physical frailty? Other supposed male advantages, such as muscle density, likewise vary between individuals significantly.

These traits do not necessary play a significant role in how useful someone is to the Armed Forces in any case. Training in hand to hand combat training has been greatly deemphasized in the United States military since World War II because it is used only rarely and in very specialized situations [2,3]. Almost all fighting in modern warfare involves the use of weapons that can very easily kill an enemy and rely primarily on the skill of the operator.

A large number of the tasks required by the military do not even require a soldier to fight against the enemy on the ground. Men certainly have no advantage in operating artillery, flying aircraft, or crewing ships. Women are prefectly capable of all of these tasks. That is even beside the noncombat roles that comprise many of the roles in a mechanized army. Approximately a third of the personnel in the US Armed Forces are civilian, and there are many areas included logistics, medicine, and engineering in which women could be useful without having to serve a combat role [4]. Men who are drafted can elect to serve their country in a non-combat position if they object to killing on moral grounds, so there is absolutely no justifiable reason why women should not be required to fill these roles [5].


Argument Two: Practicality and Efficiency

By required women to register for the SSS, the United States would effectively double the number of potential conscripts [4]. This would make it considerably easier to raise an army of a given size simply because more potential recruits would be available. It also gives more oppurtunities to replace draft resisters with people who will comply with military service requirements. Furthermore, it would be easier to educate people about the need to register for the SSS and its civil importance if it applied to everyone and not only some people. It is generally inefficient to abitrarily exclude some people from the SSS.


Argument Three: Fairness and Civil Equality

In the United States, women can vote to elect politicians and female politicians can vote to start a war and instate a draft. These are all policies that place an immense risk and responsibility on the people of the United States, but women play a role in making these decisions safe in the knowledge that they will never be the ones to pay the ultimate price. As women undoubtedly should have an equal role in the decision making in a society, they must share the burdens and responsibilities of these decisions equally. Outdated notions of female frailty and reproductive importance have resulted in women effectively enjoying the rights of protected citizens. The truth of the matter, however, is that women are not fundamentally weak and in need of protection: they are not only capable of sharing the burdens of upholding society but they are obilgated to share them equally.

In any project, including the project of maintaining and improving civilzation, women cannot simply be "brought along for the ride" by men as pretend equals without being given their share of responsibilities. This is patently sexist against both men and women: it puts men in a position where they alone must bear a terrible responsibility, and it suggests that women are not capable of bearing this same burden.

A rational society ought not consider "men" and "women" as two separate entities subject to different rules and expectations; the differences between the sexes are far too slight to justify this archiac outlook. Both men and women must simply be considered people; sex needs have no more rule in defining a person's responsibilities and expectations than height or any other physical characteristic.


Concluding Statements:

The conceptions of sex roles and expectations in the United States are simply outdated and delusional. Sexual dimorphism has had such a profound effect on human psychology that people in the United States built the first fixed-wing aircraft before they granted women the right to vote. As human technology and science advance, we continue to distance ourselves further and further from our animal past and move toward a society of rational beings. If we are to build a human civilization that is based around reason, truth, and justice, we will have to abandon the vestigial morals of our animal past. The ridiculous notions of gender roles and expectations that pervade our society must be one of the first delusions to go, and the best place to start it is at the point of its most profound significance.


Sources:

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org......

[2]

rrcooper

Pro

rrcooper forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
Grape

Con

"Finally, the forfeiture of any one round will constitute the forfeiture of the debate. In accepting the debate my opponent agrees to this rule."

This rule was clearly stated in Round 1. I would appreciate it if my opponent would post in the next two rounds acknowlegding his defeat so that the debate can be concluded more quickly.

rrcooper

Pro

rrcooper forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Grape

Con

This debate is now over. Even if my opponent posts something in the next round the debate is already forfeited.
rrcooper

Pro

rrcooper forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by Grape 6 years ago
Grape
RFD:

Voted 7 points to myself because of forfeit.
Posted by Grape 6 years ago
Grape
Yes, that is pretty ironic.
Posted by darkkermit 6 years ago
darkkermit
Oh, the irony.
Posted by darkkermit 6 years ago
darkkermit
I didn't forfeit :).
I'm just a procrastinator.
Posted by bluesteel 6 years ago
bluesteel
I'll debate whether women should be allowed in active combat, but if this is the topic, you can just argue that they'll be useful in supportive functions.
Posted by Dazedinday 6 years ago
Dazedinday
With you I mean.
Posted by Dazedinday 6 years ago
Dazedinday
I'm sure women themselves would be inclined to disagree. :(
Posted by Grape 6 years ago
Grape
I'm reposting this debate because it's looking like my opponent is going to forfeit and I made a careless spelling error in the title that makes me look like an idiot.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by Zarroette 2 years ago
Zarroette
GraperrcooperTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: ff
Vote Placed by Cliff.Stamp 6 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
GraperrcooperTied
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Vote Placed by J.Kenyon 6 years ago
J.Kenyon
GraperrcooperTied
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Vote Placed by Grape 6 years ago
Grape
GraperrcooperTied
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