Rep. Charles Rangel of New York said yesterday that he’ll introduce a bill (again) to reinstate the draft during an appearance on Face the Nation:
Rangel, a veteran of the Korean War who has unsuccessfully sponsored legislation on conscription in the past, said he will propose the measure early next year.
At a time when some lawmakers are urging the military to send more troops to Iraq, “I don’t see how anyone can support the war and not support the draft,” he said.
Sen. Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican who is a colonel in the U.S. Air Force Standby Reserve, said he agreed that the U.S. does not have enough people in the military.
“I think we can do this with an all-voluntary service, all-voluntary Army, Air Force, Marine Corps and Navy. And if we can’t, then we’ll look for some other option,” said Graham, who is assigned as a reserve judge to the Air Force Court of Criminal Appeals.
Rangel, incoming chairman of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, said he worried the military was being strained by its overseas commitments.
“If we’re going to challenge Iran and challenge North Korea and then, as some people have asked, to send more troops to Iraq, we can’t do that without a draft,” Rangel said.
There is, of course, more to Rangel’s proposal than simply ensuring that we have enough soldiers:
“There’s no question in my mind that this president and this administration would never have invaded Iraq, especially on the flimsy evidence that was presented to the Congress, if indeed we had a draft and members of Congress and the administration thought that their kids from their communities would be placed in harm’s way,” said Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y.
The draft is not a popular idea; polls show that 70% of the country opposes it, and as this story from the New York Daily News notes, it’s very unpopular in Rangel’s own district in Harlem.
I’m not sure I agree with Rangel’s idea that members of Congress would be less likely to support war if it were their own kids who might die; there was strong support for the war in communities where many people join the military and thus the impact of the war has been felt most strongly.
But I do think he’s got a point that if a war is worth fighting, we should all be willing to make sacrifices for it. And I think that’s the point of his legislation. And I believe he proposes it knowing just how controversial a real consideration of it would be.
Those of us old enough to remember the last draft remember how the war and the draft ripped the country apart psychologically. (I just barely remember it; for two years near the tail end of the war in Vietnam, I went to an elementary school on military base overseas.)
Rangel’s alone with his draft bill, and I think he knows perfectly well it won’t happen. I suspect he just wants to force us to have a difficult national conversation that makes us think about the costs of war. I’m with those seven in ten Americans who oppose it, but my view has little to do with Iraq or troop levels; I think it’s an unacceptable infringement of personal liberty.
But while the cost of the Iraq war has included terrible loss and suffering for some Americans, for the nation as a whole, it’s mostly been a televised event. I think Rangel wants to change that. As one who thinks that living with the most painful consequences of your decisions makes you consider them much more carefully, I appreciate what he’s trying to do, even though I disagree with it.
Posted by John Whiteside at November 20, 2006 07:22 AM
A national service draft, where the militry is but one of several options, including a wide variety of civil service options, would not just serve as a tool to fill the military and slap Bush in the face, but could really serve to provide greater public mindednes, get a lot done, and democratize American life.
Posted by: Aaron Roland, M.D. at November 20, 2006 08:29 AM
We need the draft desperately. Our military needs to be big and it needs to be a strong military. The world is going to get worse before it gets better. I am for the draft.
Posted by: Bill at November 20, 2006 08:38 AM
Putting aside the Iraq issue one is left with:
the list goes on. A nation has to be prepared for a worst-case scenario. Right now, we cannot meet our commitments without national guard and reserve troops. It has not escaped attention that a significant number of troops we now have are either from territorial possessions or not even American citizens. All-volunteer forces are better trained and more highly motivated, but that counts for little if there aren’t enough of them. What discussion of this issue really exposes is how unwilling our own people are to defend this country. One can argue that we should reduce our overseas commitments – abandon Israel, Taiwan or Afghanistan for example — but then one must ponder the consequences. Wishful thinking aside, power vaccuums anywhere will be filled. Are we prepared to accept who inherits the commitments we abandon? I don’t like the idea of a draft either, but I like even less the prospect of Iran, Russia, China or the Islamofascists imposing their will upon us by default — unless we expect them to be as respectful of our rights and liberties. Britain gutted its military in the 1930’s in the naive hope that not standing up to bullying would make the threat go away. Can we afford to make the same miscalculation? People think it is a corny saying but …. freedom isn’t free.
Posted by: Dave Anthony at November 20, 2006 08:38 AM
no! no draft unless you who propose the draft send your children to war
Posted by: L. ROJAS at November 20, 2006 08:45 AM
Re: Rep. Charles Rangel (D-Harlem), the incoming chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, said on CBS-TV’s “Face the Nation” that he would introduce legislation requiring Americans to sign up for a new draft after turning 18 years old.
We have a lot of interested young men in joining the armed forces – but the standard for joining has been too high. History has shown our best fighters do not have to have a high school diploma. There are many 19-28 year old people who would gladly join and be beneficial to our country if you would just give them a chance.
Posted by: Cindy Jones at November 20, 2006 08:46 AM
I do not think that a draft is necessary. People who are for the draft are probably too old to be drafted or do not have children that could be drafted. It should be kept as a volunteer service.
Posted by: Veronica at November 20, 2006 08:50 AM
Just like Viet Nam all over again. Bush had no business in Iraq other than corporate big business. There is NO Delared War here. Just one persons opinion.
Does congress expect people to go to Iraq and pay for Bush’s attitude with their life? When you cannot see the enemy at the local 7-11 in Iowa do you expect people to fight a corporate war. Fool some kids but, many of us have been there done that. Good Americans speak out.
Posted by: Henry at November 20, 2006 08:54 AM
Rep Rangel seems to have forgotten that enforced military conscription, lacking a Congressionally-declared state of war, is anticonstitutional.
His stated intention to reinstate the draft is an obvious ploy meant to carry on the idiocy of the current occupant of the Oval Office, past the day of that man’s continued residence in Washington DC.
I wonder just how stupid Rep Rangel thinks the American public is, if he sincerely feels we will allow him to pull this off.
Posted by: Lea Schorr at November 20, 2006 08:55 AM
I agree, there are alot of young men that would sign up but have dropped out of school and have no place to go and the military won’t let them sign up. then people wonder why there is so much crime in the U.s. Let’s help these young men make something out of themselves and give them another chance at a good life.
Posted by: Lori at November 20, 2006 08:55 AM
A draft reflects a national commitment to making war. Before we get too enthusiastic about such a commitment, we might want to consider whether the wars we have in mind are legitimate, justified and necessary. It is fairly clear the present operation was none of these, and it seems to me as well that any future unilaterally started military adventure would be just as unpopular. We are not known, for the most part, for starting wars, but we seem to be warming up for that role.
Bad idea. If we are going to become war mongers then we should be frank enough to rename the DOD as the War Department.
Posted by: A. H. J. at November 20, 2006 08:57 AM
We have to realize, that we do not need to rule the world. If you think we do, then we need the Army to do it with. Thus, the Draft.
Posted by: Keith Heavilin at November 20, 2006 08:57 AM
Rep. Charles Rangel of New York!
One comment where will your kids be during the draft? Getting a deferment like are current President and Vice-President did during Vietnam. Of course you are for the draft your kids will not be fighting a war in Iraq. They will be living the good life while the real Americans and patroits die for your pockets to be lined with cash. Heck you can’t even fix the problems in our own country and we are worried about Iraq. I think we need to fix this country before fixing others.
Posted by: Angry Louisiana Resident at November 20, 2006 08:59 AM
A draft is not necessary. I’m sure there would be many who would refuse to be drafted to fight in a war that began over nonexistant WMDs. And how could we call our country if we force our youth to fight, and die?
Posted by: Kathleen at November 20, 2006 09:01 AM
Cheney, Bush all war dodgers,Hell no they wont go, but they will send your kids without breaking a sweat.
Tell your war mongers to go shove themselfs, they aint gonna make any profit out of my son/daughters death.
Because thats what these wars are about, making a nice big fat profit at your childrens expence.
Posted by: Peter Waine (UK) at November 20, 2006 09:03 AM
cindy’s right. i tried to enlist into the reserves last week, and i was “temporarily disqualified” because i saw a councilor VOLUNTARILY a couple of times for personal reasons THREE YEARS AGO. the problems were resolved without the councilor’s help, but now, years later, i’m required to go back to councilling before i can join the military. you pretty much have to lie and say you’re the perfect human in order to join. it’s rather ridiculous.
Posted by: drewcifer at November 20, 2006 09:04 AM
We badly need more troops in Iraq and need to be prepared for other potential conflicts with Iran and North Korea. Also, I agree with others that those in Washington think too lightly about undertaking a war since their children will not be affected by their advocacy of starting a war. Re-instating the draft system will go a long way in making this country a more democratic and fair society.
Posted by: Paul Jones at November 20, 2006 09:05 AM
I strongly disagree with the draft, no matter what the intention is. American is built with liberty and will, not built with terror or a terror to another country. If the draft law passes, the only people that will suffer are cilvilians, normal people that do not need a war for any reasons. The draft law would only satisfy politicians in the world that plan to invade another country, and some domestic leaders that are waiting to invade another poor country that did not want a thing from US.
The economy has been torn apart from time to time because of war, and plus big companies keep outsoucing to other countries with a variety of jobs. I have not seen anyone worries about economy like the way they worry about the war, why?
US is obiously depedent on global economy heavily today, why you want someone find an excellent excuse to fight another country instead of helping their family build a strong foundation at their own home, in case one day they have no rice left in the family.
Why you want other countries to think US is a terror country and possibly refuse to provide service to US? Even though US is currently a super power in the world, if we don’t act responsibly to our own people instead of worrying too much on invasion, we will lose our trust from US citizens.
Posted by: AG at November 20, 2006 09:08 AM
Am I the only person who remembers the Democrats using the spectre of draft legislation supposedly to be implemented by President Bush “at any moment” as a boogey-man to scare young people and parents away from the Republican party two years ago?
So … when the Democrats accuse the GOP (falsely) of intending to re-implement the draft — it’s A Bad Thing. But, when a Democrat intends to try to re-implement the draft — well, it’s just to “force us to have a difficult national conversation”.
What is that old saying?
“Inconsistency is the hobgoblin of small minds”.
Personally, I’d replace “inconsistency” with “hypocrisy”, but that’s just me.
Posted by: LawDog at November 20, 2006 09:11 AM
I am a Mother of three boys and the United States cannot have them for war. I think it should be a choice not a law. I also believe if your going to have a draft it should include females not just males. We constantly hear about women and equality.When my son went to get his drivers license he was required to sign up for the draft. I refused to put the information down and they refused his license. I asked if females where required to fill this out and they said no. Fair and equal? I think not.I will move from this country if they reinstate the draft.I am not willing to give my sons to any war unless they choose to go on their own.Do not get me wrong I support the soldiers that are defending freedom in Iraq,Afghanistan and soon Korea.The soldiers serving now made the choice to be there and I am proud of those men and women.They are doing a good job because its the job they signed up to do. There is great honor in that.There however is no honor in forcing someone to join a war and kill if it is not their choice.If the United States does not have enough men and women to finish this job maybe it’s a hint to batten down the hatches and take care of our own home.Perhaps we could use our troops to build houses for the people that are still homeless from Katrina. If you want a real war reinstate the draft. The United States will never get my sons unless they sign up for it.
Posted by: Suznne George at November 20, 2006 09:12 AM
funny how he was opposed to the draft right up until the democrats took over congress. shows the country what hypocrites they are. they wont end the war in Iraq either, only escalate it. bunch of lying phonies , time to vote both major parties out
Posted by: tim at November 20, 2006 09:17 AM
No draft please. Allow those that volunteer to serve, too many are being turned away.Allow illegal aliens to serve to obtain citizenship.curlysmom
Posted by: curlysmom at November 20, 2006 09:20 AM
I think many of you are missing the point of what Rep. Rangel is doing. He is proposing the draft to rile people. He is forcing Bush’s hand. Bush knows that a draft and his corporate wars will be extremely unpopular. So does Charles Rangel! Rep. Rangel knows this does not have a chance of happening. Now do you get it?
Posted by: Joe at November 20, 2006 09:21 AM
I’ve often heard the phrase, “Freedom isn’t free.” And that’s quite true. I pay my taxes, I endorse socialized medicine, I pay for police, firemen, and government officials. Freedom isn’t free.
But it seems that whenever I’m told that, I’m being told that by a rich white man who hasn’t had to pay taxes for the past decade. I’m being told that by a warmonger bent on the destruction of morally opposable people. I’m being told that by people not in harm’s way, not up for the draft, not posting their corporate revenue in the US. These are the paymasters of the world, and they need my blood to grease their cogs.
No, freedom isn’t free. But when you hide behind your giant, novelty-size American flag spouting patriotic slogans and telling me it’s my duty as an American to pick up arms against the evil insurgency, I see your true colors. I see you wearing tall black boots, a crisp, grey uniform, and a old Hindu symbol in black, white, and red on your sleeve. Don’t tell me freedom isn’t free.
Posted by: Stephen at November 20, 2006 09:21 AM
Oppose the draft? (70% oppose a draft) — 70% SUPPORTED the Iraq War? (30% support now) What does that tell you? (answer: “Your OK with other kids dying — just not yours” Can you say hypocrits? We NEED a draft to quell all the hypocrite-hawks!
Posted by: RonTX at November 20, 2006 09:22 AM
Kill two birds with one stone and draft the illegal immigrants as a means to obtain their citizenship!
Posted by: JC at November 20, 2006 09:23 AM
Sorry to bust your bubble but I have 21 years in the military and my son is currently serving with 20 years. Neither of us support the idea of the current war, however we do support a draft so the kids in now do not have to keep paying for the peace you currently enjoy.
Posted by: keith at November 20, 2006 09:25 AM
The draft is a relic of oldstyle “battlefront” type warfare. The current conflict like most modern “asymetrical conflicts require better trained more experienced soldiers than ever before. The draft is a very ineffective way of providing those kind of soldiers.
Besides all four branches of the military are at or near recruiting goals, and have been for months according to pentagon figures. So where is the need for a draft ! We do have a problem in the balance of the types of units in the active and reserve forces. The balance of unit types has historically put ground troops on active duty, and support and specialzed troops in the reserve forces. Modern conflicts require that our forces be organized the other way around. The Pentagon has admited this problem and is working on re-organizing our force structure to correct it.
Rep. Rangel is only trying to use the idea of a draft to push his false assertion that the children of the rich and powerful do not fight in war. In short his propsal is all about politics, and has nothing to do with defending this country.
Posted by: Robert A. Crutchfield at November 20, 2006 09:28 AM
funny how he was opposed to the draft right up until the democrats took over congress.
Actually, he’s proposed the draft before.
Posted by: John Whiteside at November 20, 2006 09:28 AM
Rangle’s grandstanding aside, this shows Congress’ continued seperation with reality and with the people they were elected to support.
For those who thought the last Iraq conflict brought about many cover ups but would support a draft – the draft would up the number of cover-ups exponentially in order to keep the populous behind any war effort and the striping of any more of our personal liberties.
Posted by: Thomas at November 20, 2006 09:30 AM
So a Draft? Are we going to be “fair” this go round? Are we going to draft females? Gays? What will the penalties be if someone goes AWOL? While I vehemently disagree with your assertion that “(a draft is) an unacceptable infringement of personal liberty.” I don’t see a draft solving any of the problems it is designed to face.
Previously, the draft was challenged in court based on its gender bias. The decision of the court said the America was not yet ready to send its daughters into war – an issue mainstream feminists dodge. Perhaps we are ready for that now…
How will we handle “don’t ask, don’t tell”? We will either let in openly Gay people – which will bring with it a slew of issues (harassment, gay-bashing, decline in unit cohesion, etc.) Or you will increase the amount of people claiming to be gay simply to avoid service.
I know these two issues are chock full of controversy and debate and I am not arguing either side, I am just pointing out that these two issues alone will cause a major shake up in military culture, and as has been said before, I don’t think the military is a place for social experimentation.
The AWOL issue is one that I think most needs to be addressed but cannot without a major shift in societal attitude. In my last 15 years in the military I have seen dozens of people go AWOL, usually with minimal repercussions. Typically they turn themselves in after a requisite number of days after which they are discharged. Most go on to find successful jobs and their failed commitment never really haunts them. In one case I was personally involved in the individual was praised for getting out of what was a “stupid” decision by his newfound employer, a west coast computer firm and given a $70,000/yr job. A draft will not work unless failure to live up to your obligations leads to becoming a social pariah. Society as a whole does not value military service except in time of war. Perhaps in the long term a draft will change that – but I don’t think so – and in the short term it will bring needless discipline and morale problems at a critical time.
What really needs to happen is a change in Societal attitudes. When John Kerry made his soured joke, he was not saying anything I haven’t heard hundreds of times. Our society is way to selfish. We don’t mind asking others to sacrifice, just don’t ask us personally. We have other plans – especially if we are part of the “elite”. That is again another topic. When Military service is valued by society intrinsically as a duty owed to the society that secures us and gives us our opportunities to succeed, then a draft will work – but it won’t need to.
Posted by: Dave at November 20, 2006 09:32 AM
My enitre family severd in some branch of the military. I agree to re-instating the draft for both male and female. I am of the opion that if you don’t want take up arms for your country, no matter how ridiculous the war is, you have no right to live here. The military teaches far more than just how to shoot things, it teaches you discipline. I honestly believe that you have to earn your citizenship to the greatest nation on earth. If you aren’t willing to fight and die for your nation then you shouldn’t be allowed to determine who will lead it. The rights granted by the consititution should be awarded only to those who are willing to die for the same liberties.
And who cares if it is volunteer or not. Studies show that N. Korea has the strongest ground army. Do you really think that Kim Jong Il has asked for volunteers in his army?
Don’t get me wrong. I’m a democrat to the bone, and I don’t believe in THIS war. But I do believe in fighting for our country. It doesn’t matter how we got into it, just that we did. Now we have to be sure we finish it, and we won’t be able to with an all volunteer armed forces.
Posted by: Pam at November 20, 2006 09:34 AM
I support a draft and would have no hesitation in signing up to fight _if_ and it’s a big if, the cause was just and we were in true peril. Rep. Rangel has made a valid point. It’s easy to support a war that costs you nothing personally. No need to ask hard questions, just rally round the flag and denounce anyone who disagrees as a traitor. If we all had some skin in the game, perhaps the ‘game’ would only be played when absolutely necessary.
Posted by: Gregory Nicholls at November 20, 2006 09:37 AM
I think people who drop out of high school should be given the chance to join the military. Also a lot of people go to jail for stupid petty crimes we should just send them to the military age allowing of course. Were overcrowding our jails. Some people make stupid mistakes and mabey if given a second chance they would change. I think few years in the military would straighten any body out. No on the draft. Just because sombody in our goverment made a mistake our kids should have pay for it.
Posted by: Anthony San Dimas, California at November 20, 2006 09:39 AM
As one who remembers the draft and who is currently on active military duty, I can only say that I want the most highly trained and motivated individuals standing next to me when I’m in harms way. When I’m down range, I want to be able to rely on the members of my team.
However, I do believe that we need some type of mandatory service requirement to give something back to the country. Whether that’s working in the inner city, environmental clean up, or homeland security, we all need to develop a commitment to the country. As JFK said:”Ask not what your country can do for you…..”
Posted by: Michael Frank at November 20, 2006 09:40 AM
I served five years in the military as a volunteer. For many soldiers, the military has indeed provided an avenue for them to create a better life. However, that is not the purpose of the military. Those who have made a better life for themselves through military service do so on their own, through their own choices and own commitments to what they feel is important. The military does not exist to make better national citizens or more efficient workers for the corporate world. The military exist for one reason, to kill enemies. I have young children and I am of age where I can be called back into service. At this point, I would refuse and I would council my children to never give up their autonomy for some patriotic lie such as “service to your nation.” Why? It’s simple. Look at what an undereducated overachiever has done to our country because of his ignorant and malicious whims. A draft wouldn’t help American citizens or American congressmen/women do a better job of doing what is right based on truth. A draft would merely provide them with more fodder for corporate investments at the expense of those who cannot afford college, like Senator’s sons and daughters can. The rich have always gotten out of service to their nation. In the past, a rich person could pay a poor person to take their place if they were conscripted. Then a rich person could get out of the draft by going to college. Rich people never fight wars, they only cause wars that poor people fight.
The point however is this, a national draft is bad for America and bad for the world. Our leaders cannot be trusted with the lives of our children. Think about Colin Powel and his fake vial of anthrax. Think about Rumsfeld and Cheney lying about enriched uranium and ties to al-qaeda. Think about all those generals who sat by while lies were being told to the American citizens because they were too scared to lose their promotion and retirement if the spoke out against the plans of a coked-up, drunk-driving, draft-dodger.
I will never let my kids join this country’s military. I joined, and I now know a lie when I hear it.
The old lie:
“Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori”
Wilfred Owen 1916
Posted by: william at November 20, 2006 09:59 AM
I agree with Michael Frank – the military is a profession and its time we should stop thinking of it as a last resort for those unable to achieve basic academic results or those who have been incarcerated. We need strong, dependable people who WANT to serve, not those who couldnt do anything else with their lives or were forced into duty.
Posted by: Wayne at November 20, 2006 10:24 AM
President Bush wants Victory in Iraqi. Let’s respect his decision as Commander-in- Chief by supporting Charles Rangel’s bill to reinstate the draft. Bring it on!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Posted by: rigo reyes at November 20, 2006 10:30 AM
I think the US should have two years mandatory military service for everyone, starting at age 18.
The kids today lack real focus and goals. Service would teach them how to get things done, the power of teamwork, and the advantages of working within the system.
I wish I had done it when I was that age.
Posted by: Peter Palmer at November 20, 2006 10:31 AM
The draft in nothing more than a way for the Politicians to keep their hands on the controls of the military. better to have requirements to serve in politics like a background check where failure meant no service.
Second, politics was not meant to be a career, military was.
How better to gain qualified soldiers. There is no school for politicians except experience and some fail to learn form that.
Posted by: John at November 20, 2006 10:33 AM
I oppose all war – especially this one. However, I do support an ongoing draft for one reason, and for one reason ONLY: it keeps our country honest.
Without a draft, too many people dismiss war and death by thinking that the enlistees “asked for it”. But when your brother, your son, your daughter, your best friend, etc, die, you start questioning why. And we desperately need that right now.
Posted by: jb3 at November 20, 2006 10:34 AM
A draft would likely turn the youth of America into a more violent organization that will revolt against the tyranny of this government. I think this would lead to more localized terrorists as many would turn renegade and a percentage of those will feel betrayed by their horrid country that would allow such an act to occur.
Posted by: Jeremiah at November 20, 2006 10:36 AM
I think universal service is necessary. We put the burder of our national defense off on too few people. If every family shared equal risk and equal burden of military service, or of non-military public service, I think our society would greatly benefit. Moreover, president’s will be far less likely to throw lives away when they come from all strata of our society, not just working class families, Hispanics and African-Americans. If we had had a draft, I can guarantee you we would not have lost over 2800 Americans in Iraq.
Posted by: Dennis at November 20, 2006 10:40 AM
Some of you have been sound asleep for over three years. Rangel submitted similar legislation in 2003 before the Iraq war started and again in 2005. This time he’s getting a lot more media attention only because the Dems will be in power.
I fully support the draft. I think every man and woman should do at least two years in the military or national service with no exceptions or deferments. It’s a great way to wake up Americans again. Many people here are so disconnected they didn’t care our politicians were leading us down the same damn path as Nazis took. Why should they when they’re sitting in a comfy home not putting their own or their kids’ lives in jeopardy. The news orgs helped out by showing sanitized videos from the Middle East so as not to upset everyone with how ugly war really is.
Americans desperately need a dose of reality. I and many in my family have proudly and voluntarily served in the military. It’s been sickening watching lazy bums supporting an unjust war and now whining that they might have to put their own lives on the line. If you, your sons, or your daughters don’t want to serve then please leave the USA. Your life is no more important than those of us who willing served to help protect our country. Alternatively, we can paint a huge bulleye on you and your homes with the message: “I’m a chicken hawk. BOMB HERE FIRST.”
Posted by: Mike at November 20, 2006 10:48 AM
War is obsolete and counterproductive. There are a lot of more effective ways to build markets and sell products than to try to control people with violent war.
A military draft only provides more fodder for war. Why make an additional investment in waste and destruction?
Americans bent on controlling the world through military action are creating a nation of corruption, where those in charge take the cue to do whatever it takes to stay in charge.
A draft would simply subject reluctant pre-college youth to the bidding of the Oil Industry Government. Please don’t.
Some say it’s a way of making things bad enough for people to rise up and do something. Hey, Congress just passed a law to allow the President to use the US Military against US citizens in the US. Let’s not make things worse.
Posted by: Bill at November 20, 2006 10:49 AM
Reinstate the draft for all 18 year-olds, Males and female. Give them a choice of 2 years military service or 2 years civilian service. High school dropouts would be required to complete their GED in special classes immediately before basic military training or specialized civilian training begins. Illegal immigrants who speak English could serve a similar 2-year commitment in either service, qualifying them for a more expeditious path to citizenship.
Posted by: Ken Richardson at November 20, 2006 11:21 AM
A draft — in other words, kidnapping young people and enslaving them to the military or some other part of the government — is obviously a fundamental violation of human freedom. And building a larger military is simply giving people like Bush and Cheney a bigger temptation to start more wars.
At least we have seen almost instantly that voting Democratic it not a solution to the incessant warmongering of the U.S. ruling class. It doesn’t matter what party they belong to; they want war and repression.
Posted by: Anarcissie at November 20, 2006 11:22 AM Houston Chronicle