The Supreme Court has been challenged to consider the nation’s long-standing policy to draft only men to register for military service at the age of 18.
Justices are expected to decide this week whether they will hear a case to determine whether women should also be required to register for military service. The last time the U.S. has held a military draft was during the Vietnam War.
Ria Tabacco Mar, the director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Women’s Rights Project, said requiring men to register imposes a “serious burden on men that’s not being imposed on women,” according to a Fox News report.
“It’s also sending a tremendously harmful message that women are less fit than men to serve their country in this particular way and conversely that men are less fit than women to stay home as caregivers in the event of an armed conflict. We think those stereotypes demean both men and women,” she said.
Others argue the requirement for women to register for the military draft would place unneeded burdens on women and could cause harm to families.
“Men who do not register can lose eligibility for student loans and civil service jobs, and failing to register is also a felony punishable by a fine of up to $250,000 and five years in prison,” according to The Associated Press.
The case would not decide whether women will be required to register for the military draft. Instead, it would only rule whether the current system that includes only men is constitutional.
Even if the case is selected soon, it would not be held until later in the year.