February 6, 2007
By Mark Sherman
I know that this is something that the majority of Americans do not want to hear - Congress should re-instate a draft.
Not a lottery, no deferments, just a plain old draft. Everyone of a certain age should stand the same chance of being chosen.
I agree with those who say a draft is the fastest way to end the war.
Right now the "all volunteer" army is used as an excuse for sending our young people off to fight the corporatist battle. They "volunteered" for it, didn't they? This effectively exempts most of the Baby Boomer descendants from serving. We the people would not stand for sending our own children off to this war in order to preserve the profits of the mega-corporations. The spotlight that a draft would shine on the profiteers would cause a national uproar - something that the corporatists want to avoid like a national single payer insurance program.
In my opinion the "all volunteer" Army has always been dangerous - it was only a matter of time before an idiot became the Commander in Chief and a corporatist Congress would aide and abet his actions. A standing army was dreaded by Thomas Jefferson - he knew that having one tempted you to use it.
A nationwide draft would again cause actions like those cited by Howard Zinn in A People's History of the United States, who wrote about posters in Mississippi that read, "No Mississippi Negroes should be fighting in Viet Nam for the White man's freedom, until all the Negro People are free in Mississippi. Negro boys should not honor the draft here in Mississippi. Mothers should encourage their sons not to go...No one has the right to ask us to risk our lives and kill other Colored People in Santa Domingo and Viet Nam, so White Americans can get richer."
Zinn goes on to write, "Young men began to refuse to register for the draft, refused to be inducted if called. As early as May 1964 the slogan 'We Won't Go' was widely publicized."
Unfortunately, I did not join that group back then. Digging through some old paperwork the other day to find my DD214 so I could become a documented member of Veterans for Peace - I came across "Certificates of Appreciation" signed by Richard Nixon and General Westmoreland - the war was wrong then and it is still wrong today.
My sister, who protested back in those days, told me that she is against re-instating the draft as it existed back then. Instead, she says we the people draft men and women 45 years and older! I like it, and that way we leave the young people out of it.
How fast do you think that the chant: "HELL NO! WE WON"T GO!" would reverberate around the nation?
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