PUBLIC OPINION > Women Should Be Allowed to Fight on the Front Lines

News 2012/12/04 22:00:00
Marine Capt. Zoe Bedell left duty last year to challenge the Defense Department's policy of excluding women from direct ground combat, arguing that it has limited her potential for promotion. But the L.A. Times wanted to know how the public felt, so it asked whether or not women should be allowed to fight on the front lines alongside their male counterparts.

After more than 1,000 votes, about two-thirds of the public agreed that women should be allowed to fight on the front lines along with men. However, it was a nuanced debate on both sides. For instance, many people who voted "no" admitted that there are probably some women capable of fighting on the front lines, and many people who voted "yes" conceded that some women are probably not cut out for it. The general consensus seemed to be that requirements for fighting on the front lines should be the same for both genders.

Women Want to Be Allowed

Women, for their part, want to have the option. Obviously, this doesn't mean 76% of women felt they could handle the front lines, but they were 13% more likely than men to stand up for their right to do so. But to be fair, the majority of men still agreed. Both genders, for the most part, think women should be allowed on the front lines.

Conservative Skepticism

Conservative voters were much more likely than liberals to oppose women fighting on the front lines -- by about 36%. They were about split on the issue, though ultimately sided in favor of it with a 53% majority. Liberals, on the other hand, were almost completely in favor of it with an 89% majority. Not surprising, since conservatism is more traditional by nature.

Teens Are Totally for It

Though the age breakdown is probably somewhat reflective of the political difference noted above, it was more gradated than usual. From teens to 20-somethings, support became steadily less prominent. Between the ages of 25 and 55, it stayed about the same, and then started dropping again. Voters over the age of 65 were largely against it.

If you'd like to vote on this question, dig deeper into the demographics, or engage in existing discussion about the topic, visit the L.A. Times poll about women on the front lines. We'd love to hear from you!
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Top Opinion

  • Wulfdane 2012/12/04 23:07:25 (edited)
    Sounds great until you get videos being posted of women being raped, sodomized and tortured to death by terrorists trying to demoralize the public.

    Politically it would be unsustainable and a distraction for military commanders/soldiers that could jeopardize military operations.

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  • Baduyo 2013/08/28 03:57:13 (edited)
    Are you out of your mind people; Women do not belong in danger; now, then, or in the future; For a million years we men have been programed to protect women; Allowing a woman in combat creates a danger for everyone as men will automatically protect the female; It is in our genes; Don't believe what women libb types tell you; IT IS HOG WASH: Sure woman COULD do it; but they should not; And then there are the other problems; Female vs male; which i will not go into here;
  • Alex 2013/08/27 22:02:20
    Of course thy should. The "free country" part should'a decided it a long time ago.
  • wtxwoman 2013/08/26 17:32:34
    I have always been totally for it. Women will not have true equality until they break through the last male bastion. Men and women have complimentary strengths and weaknesses. Putting them together would make a platoon better.
  • kurtanderson1 2013/08/26 17:19:36
    It's up to the individual. Some are cut out for combat. Some are more useful in logistics and military strategic planning. Some have no place in the military.
  • Bocephus 2013/08/26 14:59:01
  • kobidobidog 2013/08/26 14:34:12 (edited)
    Military is evil. Whoever wants to save there soul should not go in and get out of the military. Military makes God sad. Military is the devils power giving nothing that is good.
  • Baduyo kobidob... 2013/08/28 04:00:15
    this person drinks koolaid; Military had not a body thusly can not be good or evil; People make up military; Some are good; SOme are Evil;
  • kobidob... Baduyo 2013/08/28 04:15:17 (edited)
    Jesus would have nothing to do with a military. There are so many of the best people killed genetically alone that are dumped in a dump literally. Not enough room anywhere else. The military is a stench in the nostrils of God, but people think they smell like a rose. The damn militarily teaches people that a weapon is power. What do we get? Shootings here and there. People cry about it. They brought it on themselves by glorifying what the military and police glorify in. Either it is a deadly weapon or it is one that tortures the body. Jesus was god with blood in him for a short time. Had Jesus favored the military approach like I say many times, we would not be here at all.
  • Baduyo kobidob... 2013/08/28 05:36:57 (edited)
    your jesus says turn the other cheek; How is that working out for the people of Egypt right now; WIthout the military that you hate; you would have none of the freedoms that you enjoy. Without the military to hold the line; muslims would now own the world; this is not a battle lasting a few years; this battle has lasted over a thousand years; Having spent my time in the military defending your body; I hope you enjoy the freedom to speak you mind;
  • kobidob... Baduyo 2013/08/28 05:58:58
    This is my time to speak. Hezbollah is one of the enemies of the Muslims. Whatever a person does is Judged by God. To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. Did you know that? it is in scripture.
  • John 2013/02/16 18:39:33
    Option? Do men have an option? All men aren't cut out for the front lines either. No options. I'm always told a woman can do anything a man can do so, lets see it in action. Whatever service this country requires of men should be mandatory for women including registering with the selective service.
  • wtxwoman John 2013/08/26 17:33:43
    I agree with you.
  • Arianne 2013/02/09 03:28:17
    I say screw gender bias. Keep the same standards, Dont change and have different standards for men and women, just have one standard and whoever can pass it is in regardless of gender.
  • kobidob... Arianne 2013/08/26 14:38:38 (edited)
    Keep the standard of God's word that says wisdom is better than weapons of war. How can people continue to ignore God's word? People that ignore that will see Gods light as hell. Had God looked at Moses in his glory Moses would have seen hell never being able to record it because he would have been a pile of ashes.
  • Arianne kobidob... 2013/08/27 07:05:54
    I agree with you that diplomacy is better than war, but I'm not too sure what this has to do with gender bias in the military
  • kobidob... Arianne 2013/08/28 01:44:00
    I wish we did not have a military to even have a gender bias. I am thinking way and above what people are thinking.
  • Baduyo kobidob... 2013/08/28 04:02:14
    if you did not have a military; you would be bowing towards the Moslem holy land and your women would have no rights and would be wearing Barf-fas over their faces; walking behind like a good sheep dog
  • kobidob... Baduyo 2013/08/28 04:35:00
    We would set an example to the world what was right. God knows what is right. Whatever people do will get an equal reward in the end. Why do we have I will repay sayeth the Lord with the boom, boom of bombs dropped by people saying I will repay? They learned from us. In a way they are right. Satan is the leader of the USA. But one thing.The Muslims became Satan to by beholding us. What do you suppose would happen when the Muslims no longer beheld Satan in us regarding the military with weapons of war? The soul is what needs to be saved. What did Jesus do and not do to save his soul?
  • Arianne kobidob... 2013/08/28 08:20:53
    and get killed in the process. Sadly unless every country disarmed at the exact same time it wouldn't work.
  • kobidob... Arianne 2013/08/28 15:18:52 (edited)
    I would like to see that too but God sees thing from another perspective. He see the heart. He saves the soul that has the humble Jesus in it. See beyond this life. That is why Jesus is the way he is.
  • beanpole 2013/02/06 02:34:37 (edited)
    I think that women are capable and are willing to go into battle right alongside of the men. But, I think that the battle has been popularized and it looks like a big rush and everyone is made a hero. But when a women combatant gets captured, what they go through as and being a woman is hard to fathom and is more real than any movie can express. Very few of the enemies that the US faces are homos, but you can bet your hangy down parts that they ARE heterosexual and can come up with ways to torture a woman that men can not even begin to imagine, and many a male soldier will give up his life trying to protect his female fellowsoldier.
  • John beanpole 2013/02/16 19:35:43
    Male soldiers often give up their lives for fellow male soldiers. It won't take long on the battlefield before the men let go of society's assumption that women are helpless. The torture of male soldiers can and often is sexual and brutal. Sodomy can be done with objects.
  • beanpole John 2013/03/10 02:31:34
    well said.
  • kobidob... John 2013/08/26 14:47:53 (edited)
    The military is sanctifying human sacrifice. That is what Baal and Baalim worshipers did, didn't they? They sanctified human sacrifices as well as the Aztec and Mayan religious people.
  • Baduyo John 2013/08/28 04:03:38
    but the males do not automatically give the perverts of other nations ideas up front;
  • wtxwoman beanpole 2013/08/26 17:38:17
    That happens in this country all the time. Women can be taught self-defense just like a man can be taught. Everything is not about brute strength anymore. There are men who aren't cut out for combat, too. FYI, rape is a crime of violence and power, has nothing to do with whether the perpetrator is hetro- or homosexual. As for ways to torture, that goes both ways. I can think of several ways to torture a man that wouldn't work on a woman.
  • Spooner 2013/02/05 23:30:55
    Why should women be denied the fun of blowing someones head off?

    Sounds good to me, all in the name of peace and democracy of course.
  • kobidob... Spooner 2013/08/26 14:51:02
    Satan loves that. Why love what Satan loves?The fewer doing what Satan loves the smaller the lake of fire.
  • Gambit Garrison 2013/02/03 01:22:25
  • david 2013/01/17 02:25:48
    heck ya they bleed for 1 week a month and dont die. maybe they are pretty tough give em a shot
  • Gambit ... david 2013/02/03 01:18:14
  • wtxwoman Gambit ... 2013/08/26 17:41:16
  • kobidob... david 2013/08/26 14:52:51
    The devil wanted Jesus to bleed to death on the cross. That same mentality is in yoiu.
  • david kobidob... 2013/08/28 15:10:26
    no there was no mentality in that comment it was total jackassery which most of the content of these polls contain. lighten up. nobody takes these polls seriously.
  • kobidob... david 2013/08/28 15:23:07
    I take everything I say seriously. Do you think I am working on a comedy? They are people with a soul. Why don't people ever think of their soul?
  • david kobidob... 2013/08/28 15:26:46
    because most people arent thinking of eternity.
  • kobidob... david 2013/08/28 16:05:01 (edited)
    They think of this reality only. Finite beings without God in them think that way acting like the one who began war calling it good. Souls even wanting to kill calling it good die long before a battle is fought. The military itself is a prison of another kind. Just have a person try to get out; then you will know what I mean. They will feel like they have devils chewing them to shreds making it as miserable for them as they can.
  • wtxwoman david 2013/08/26 17:40:58
    Maybe? Try passing a grapefruit out your penis and see how painful that is. If childbirth was left up to men, humanity would be extinct!
  • Baduyo wtxwoman 2013/08/28 04:05:47
    absolutely; I hate even the prick of a shot; And I am a vet of nearly 30 years in the military; Shoot at me that is ok; Give me a shot; Not happy;
  • wtxwoman Baduyo 2013/08/28 15:02:40
    Wow! A honest man (when talking about this subject)! That is rare.
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