Veterans want VA to change sexist motto
WASHINGTON – A leading organization of Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans wants the Department of Veterans Affairs to change its motto because, the group’s leaders say, the words first issued by Abraham Lincoln – “To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan” – are outdated and, more important, they exclude the many contributions made by military women.
“By excluding women,” Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America Executive Director Allison Jaslow wrote in her letter to VA, “it ... communicates to women veterans that they are unwelcome outsiders.”
When considered in concert with VA’s most recent veteran suicide statistics, the issue takes on distinct urgency. According to the study, female veterans’ risk for committing suicide is more than double that of American women who have not served in the military.