Blue plastic balls with dates used by Selective Services when choosing numbers for the military draft in Arlington, Va.. With the Defense Department opening combat roles to women, the Marine Corps commandant, the chief of staff of the Army and one of the top Democrats on the Senate Armed Services Committee said last week that women should be required to register for the Select Services draft.
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What happens when you politicize an essential institution that functions for the safety of our nation?

The announcement by Secretary of Defense Ash Carter in December 2015 that the Department of Defense will stop all "gender-based restrictions" on military service has triggered a new discussion and a likely unintended consequence.

Certainly, this opens the door for those women who pursue military service, even in combat after the 2013 policy reversal that previously excluded direct ground combat for female service members.

But what about the Selective Service mandate that "male persons" must register within 30 days of their 18th birthdays and keep their registration accurate until age 26 for the purpose of military conscription, or draft, in the case of national need?

You see, if you are a young adult male, you must register with the U.S. government for a potential military draft. Failure to comply results in a felony charge punishable by up to five years in prison or a $250,000 fine. Even legal receipt of financial aid, as outlined by the U.S. Department of Education's website on the completion of the standardized "FAFSA" — Free Application for Federal Student Aid — lists Selective Service registration for young men as a requirement.

Will young women now have to register, just like their male counterparts, in light of the push to treat women the same as men in the military?

It's not out of the question.

Back in December, when Secretary Carter announced the end of all gender-based restrictions, the Armed Services Committee chairmen, U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Texas, and Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., issued a joint statement: "Congress has a 30-day period to review the implications of today's decision and [receive] the Department's views on any changes to the Selective Service Act that may be required as a result of this decision."

Despite the designated window of time, no changes were recommended by the Department of Defense. A few questions must be asked. If combat functions and results benefit from the participation of women, why are only men required to register for potential mandatory service? If ending gender-based restrictions adds to the military strength of the United States armed services, then does this statement on the Selective Service website make sense: "Females as well as female-to-male transgender individuals who identify as male or have had sexual reassignment surgery are not required to register."

Well, it's simple. The priority of the U.S. armed forces during the last several years has not been national security and American military preparedness. Instead, faculty-lounge types who have found positions of power within the Obama administration and are heralded by the political left are putting our military in the middle of a social experiment that transforms this critical institution into a politically correct agency.

Not only is a proposal from Obama's appointed military "leaders" requiring women to register a current topic, but a few remaining Republican presidential candidates, Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio, support the same.

Ignored is a Marine study published in September 2015 comparing mixed-gender units with all-male units. Injuries were doubled and weapons accuracy was less with female Marines.

Alexis de Tocqueville, the political theorist and French sociologist who wrote "Democracy in America" in 1835, summed it up best: "One can easily conceive that in thus striving to equalize one sex with the other, one degrades them both "

Robin Smith, a former chairwoman of the Tennessee Republican Party, is owner of Rivers Edge Alliance. She also works with political candidates, including Hamilton County Commissioner Marty Haynes and Criminal Court Judge Tom Greenholtz.