A picture that graphically shows this side of the problem is of 2-year-old Teresa Garcia clinging to the legs of her mother, Army Capt. Dorota Garcia, as she stood ready with rifle and gear before departing for Iraq from Fort Hood, Texas.
Cable television is giving us front-line coverage 24 hours a day of the war in Iraq from "imbedded" and "non-imbedded" journalists. Funny thing, one statistic is missing from their comprehensive reports.
How many more mothers of infants and toddlers from the 212,000 women in the U.S. military are taking part in the war in Iraq? How many are single mothers? How many are married mothers whose husbands are already serving in Iraq and are leaving their children without parents at home?
How many are like Army Spc. Tamekia Lavalais, leaving behind her 21-month-old baby whose father is already in Iraq? She said she would not have joined the Army "if I'd known this was going to happen."
The government won't give us the count on mothers, and reporters seem afraid to ask. Is it because it is classified information that would be harmful to national security if the enemy knew it, or because it would be harmful to the reputations of U.S. politicians and generals if Americans knew about our military's anti-motherhood policy?
Or is it because reporters are chicken in the face of the militant feminists? Bernard Goldberg tells us in his best-selling book Bias <buy book> <read review> that even tough Sam Donaldson "turns into a sniveling wimp when it comes to challenging feminists."
Politicians have brought this embarrassment on our nation because they have allowed themselves to be henpecked by militant feminists. The idea of men sending women, including mothers, to fight is contrary to our belief in the importance of the family and motherhood. Furthermore, no one respects a man who would let a woman do his fighting for him.
Women have served and continue to serve our country admirably, both on the home front and in the U.S. military. But there is no evidence to support the proposition that assigning women to combat duty advances women's rights, promotes national security, improves combat readiness or wins wars.
The United States is alone in this extraordinary social experiment to send mothers to war. We hope, when the war is over, that President Bush and the military will change these shameful feminist policies.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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