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The shouting matches heard from New Hampshire’s Saturday Republican Presidential debate are over. Yet, the surprising endorsement by several Republican candidates to register women for a hypothetical military draft and the Obama Administration’s removal of remaining strictures against women in combat still rings in our ears.
As a young Christian woman, I’m astounded that even certain conservative Christian candidates entertain ideas to forcibly send women to war. Their endorsement is baffling. But I’m not looking for an apology or retraction from campaign staffers. I’m looking to Christian leaders to oppose conscripting women into the military.
Women are serving and have been serving their country alongside men. We support and thank them for their sacrifices. Women have important roles to fill in the military, but women also play vital roles in the home. Forcing young mothers, daughters, and our sisters to register for Selective Service would be a tragic mistake.
The problem is not simply that our so-called “progressive,” yet backwards society does not make the care and nurturing of children a priority. Nor is it culture’s belittling of American women who choose to start a family before they enter their thirties. No, the problem is much deeper. Too many good, faithful men in the Church are buying into feminist notions that deconstruct gender roles for fear of being dubbed misogynistic.
Let’s please dispel with the notion that opposing women in direct combat and conscription is sexist. The recognition that God created women and men uniquely different is not misogyny. Misogyny looks more like men pulling women away from their families and sacrificing their safety for the sake of political correctness and their political careers.
I’m thankful for the Evangelical men gallantly opposing women being conscripted into the horrors of war.
Precious men like my Navy Veteran husband who seconds Southern Baptists and the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood’s Owen Strachan and Greg Gibson who publically opposed women in combat and conscription, writing, “dads should will never allow their little girls to die for them.”
These evangelical men are not opposing women in combat and conscription because they don’t value women’s valuable contributions. The opposite is true. It’s because “unlike a secular, gender-blurring culture,” as Gibson and Strachan put it, “we honor women and view them in the highest regard.”
My evangelical colleague Marc LiVecche, who serves a unique role as the Institute on Religion and Democracy’s Just War and Global Statecraft Scholar, agrees the value of women is what must motivate Christian men’s opposition to women in combat and conscription. “Men have – or ought to have – a natural predisposition toward gallantry,” In Providence Magazine, a foreign affairs journal for evangelicals, LiVecche writes, “We expect the men on a sinking ship to give up their seats on the lifeboat to women or to shield their female co-workers from the terrorist’s bullets with their bodies – as happened in San Bernardino.”
Not only Evangelicals, but also Catholics and Christian pacifists should speak out. As a young Christian woman, Christian men please hear my plea: For the sake of women, please place our God-given roles, dignity, and worth above your sensitivities to political correctness.