You Decide

the war machine

So I hate to be part of the propaganda machine, but I was reading this somewhat interesting little ditty about the draft and how some legislators are trying to get it reinstated. I couldn’t help but remember how I felt right after the tower’s fell, and realizing what that meant in terms of a body count, how I wanted to join the Army. God man, that was stupid and completely unlike me, but for a matter of ten or twenty minutes I was thinking about it and that’s a relative point. I’m completely opposed to a draft being instated, but here are some interesting facts:

The draft rules would go as follows:

1) Only males could be conscripted for combat; women could volunteer service.

2) Active duty would be relatively short (18 months).

3) Individuals would receive assignment to part-time Reserve or National Guard units after active duty (perhaps to aid in homeland security).

4) Options would be available for alternate but demanding civilian service for conscientious objectors and individuals who would be poor military performers.

“I’ve been convinced for some time that we should bring back the draft,” said Charles Sheehan-Miles, spokesman for Veterans for Common Sense and a veteran of the Gulf War. “I know it may be an odd position for a conscientious objector to take, but I think the lack of a draft is the reason it’s so easy for us to get into so many conflicts nowadays.”

He continued, “Less than a majority of members of Congress have ever served in uniform. These are the folks who are making life and death decisions, and they’re not really bearing the costs of those decisions anymore except in strictly economic terms.”

Senator Rangel has also argued that position. In a December 2003 Op-Ed piece in The New York Times, he wrote, “I believe that if those calling for war knew that their children were likely to be required to serve — and to be placed in harm’s way — there would be more caution and a greater willingness to work with the international community in dealing with Iraq. A renewed draft will help bring a greater appreciation of the consequences of decisions to go to war.” from KQED.org

After considering all of this, including the idea that the army is something like 3 behind the scenes operatives (mechanics, computer specialists, high ranking officers) for every 1 combat troop, and the idea that our leaders would then by default be people who have served and have the potential to have their children serve in a war, well that might actually slow down the war machine a bit. Of course, the little bit about women not being able to serve is just bullshit. If we’re an equal society it isn’t just in the “you can work and have rights and all of the benefits, but don’t worry about the part where you get your arms blown off, you’re too pretty to be doing those.”

Well, toodles.

Up Next: in bed by 9:11pm