By David Swanson, World BEYOND War, May 8, 2020
There are two brand new ways to avoid any military draft that should come along.
(I know you’re not worried about a draft, but the numbers of failed coup attempts in Venezuela and of failed attempts to start a war on Iran are both approaching the number of years of war in Afghanistan, so frustration may be building. Two candidates for U.S. President are competing in hostility toward China. Plus, military recruitment is faltering, and even corporate mainstream politicians are being brought around to the idea of making college part of a public education. So, I wouldn’t get too complacent).
Method #1: Catch coronavirus. Recover. Be banned from the U.S. military for life.
While this is a truly dumb approach, four out of five doctors do recommend getting banned from the military for their patients who tend to do whatever is not banned.
Method #2: Eliminate the draft.
This approach isn’t terribly dumb, but it is simple. There’s a bill in Congress to repeal the Selective Service Act and stop making 18-year-old males register for the draft.
There are two strategies being deployed to complicate this, however, and they’re both too smart for their own good.
One is to argue that depriving 18-year-old women of the right to be forced against their will to register to be forced against their will to kill and die in wars is an afront to women’s rights. Women must be treated as savagely as men! They demand their equal right to be forced into war!
The problem with this strategy is that there are just about no women actually demanding this “right” outside of female weapons lobbyists and military recruiters. If you eliminate draft registration for men, then men won’t be getting any “special” “benefit” that women aren’t getting. Both men and women will be equally free to volunteer, just as they are now.
The second strategy is to package expanding mandatory draft registration to women in all kinds of rhetoric about voluntary national service in the Peace Corps or AmeriCorps so that compulsory participation in killing is misunderstood as just another voluntary humanitarian service program. If you don’t believe me that this is a key strategy now being deployed, please read this other bill in Congress.
The best way around this deceptive approach might be offered by a third bill that seriously promotes national service programs with a focus on the coronavirus pandemic and with the support of major service organizations, but with war left out.
In fact, the smart approach for those who’d like to move the United States toward addressing dangers rather than creating them might just be to promote both the first bill I mentioned, HR 5492, to end draft registration, and the third one, to create actual service jobs. This pair of bills does everything we need in the way of providing services.
Anyone wanting to oppose that pair or bills with forcing young women to kill and die for oil profits should have to make their case straightforwardly and see who finds it persuasive.