Different concerns

To the Journal editor:

As a kickboxing coach who trains female fighters, I have a first hand respect for the physical courage of women.

There are concerns, however, that are being overlooked in our rush towards equality in warfare.

1) When a man gets shot in the abdomen and lives it is assumed that he will be able to (father) children. The female reproductive organs are located in the center mass of the human body which all armies train to shoot at. Females are at much greater risk of reproductive damage from combat wounds than males.

2) For those who have survived their wounds, the increase in amputees over deaths in combat will be more problematic for women that men. It is unlikely that the American male will readjust his definition of female beauty to include women who made such sacrifices.

3) As a prisoner of war the female soldier on the front lines will face terrors, like sexual brutality and pregnancy, that their male counterparts will never have to face.

4) The very fact that women are being allowed into combat arms show that there are not nearly enough males volunteering for the military. With the increased job growth that is projected then even fewer men will be interested in fighting our unpopular wars. Since there is not enough people to fill the postings already then the military standards will come down to meet quota.

5) There will be an increase of the already epidemic level of sexual assault in the military. Women will be in combat arms and will be brave in that role. We must be ready for the new dimension of care these female veterans will have.

Steven Richards