Today the Senate voted to advance S. 2943, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017. The bill included a provision that forces
America’s young women between the ages of 18 and 26 to register for the Selective Service, which makes
them eligible for a military draft should Congress reinstate
the draft for some future military need. The bills passed 85 to 13.
Legislation often contains bad provisions, but the good in the bill outweighs the bad and the bill needs to pass anyway. It is a judgement call as to whether or not the underlying bill is of such importance that one must accept a bad provision. I don't know if this bill was critical enough to have to accept the provision making young women register for the draft or not. I would have to have more context to draw a conclusion. It is often a cheap shot to claim someone voted for something despicable without explaining that it was part of crucial piece of legislation.
I certainly oppose making women eligible for the draft. I oppose the draft itself unless it is absolutely necessary. Free people should own their own lives. Being forced to serve the State for a period of time, whether in the military or some sort of national service, is wrong, unless there is an overwhelming national need. We already have to surrender a large portion of our income to the government for our whole life; we should not also have to give years of our life. While I oppose the draft and think the all volunteer military is the proper way to meet our nations national security needs, I do not oppose selective service registration. In the event of a need for a massive mobilization, we need a pool of fighting age men to pull from. But, we should not force women to register. I am chauvinistic enough to believe men should be expected to defend women and children and women and children should only fight if that is all that is left, and maybe by the time we reach that point it is time to surrender anyway.
The move toward making women register for the draft follow logically from making women eligible for combat rolls. This has been coming for a long time.
Tennessee Senators Bob Corker and Lamar Alexander both voted "yes." For a complete list of how Senator voted, follow this link.