The Draft: Should it be brought back?

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by KnightWriter, Apr 25, 2004.

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  1. darth_paul Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2000
    star 5
    I would be fully behind an amendment clarifying "involuntary servitude" in such a manner that both programs such as the one proposed and military drafts could never, under any circumstances, for any reason, be enacted.

    -Paul
  2. Iwishiwasajedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 24, 2002
    star 4
    Overall, there are good reasons for a draft, but there are more bad reasons. most of the bases have been touched in this thread so far but there is one opinion of mine I want to add.

    The main problem with a draft is it sends almost every able-bodied person off to war. most of the time these people are tricked into believing they are doing it for their country, when they are really only working for the propaganda of their country's leader.

    There are many major disadvantages with a draft. For one, people who may reach the highest expectations in life may be drafted; people who have high talent and may provide the world with great things may be shipped off to war. Sure, some of these people may have not shown any of their talent thus far, but many straight A college, graduate, law, and even medical students are at risk for being shipped off to fight in battle.

    Second, Is it right to send people off to fight for something they may not believe in? Going back to my first main thesis, a draft is good if we need to defend ourselves or help defend another ally. But if we just use it so we can attack other countries, without any real support from our allies, who do we really look like?
  3. Smuggler-of-Mos-Espa Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jan 23, 2002
    star 6
    The main problem with a draft is it sends almost every able-bodied person off to war. most of the time these people are tricked into believing they are doing it for their country, when they are really only working for the propaganda of their country's leader.

    That's not entirely true in my opinion. The Draft doesen't seem to have much of anything to do with the president at the time. If the country is at war, it makes no difference. The Draft would only be a result of that.

    Second, Is it right to send people off to fight for something they may not believe in? Going back to my first main thesis, a draft is good if we need to defend ourselves or help defend another ally. But if we just use it so we can attack other countries, without any real support from our allies, who do we really look like?

    I think everyone in this country would fight for it, but not by choice. It's wrong, however, to send people off and tell them "what's what".

    And the thing that matters isn't what the situation looks like to other countries. When we prevail in the right type of situation, our intention will be apparant.
  4. EnforcerSG Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2001
    star 4
    Does anyone have a problem with something like a watered down Heinlein system? Actually let me reword that. What are the problems that some of you have with a watered down version of a Heinlein system? Something where to become a full citizen (among other ways) is to serve in the military for 2 or so years of your life? I know it would be an unpopular idea, but I would like to hear why. I think it has the advantage of filtering out a lot of the people who don't understand the issues but vote anyway. Also make sure that people who overall command the armed forces actually know what it is like for the people they are commanding?
  5. darth_paul Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2000
    star 5
    First of all, I've never bought into the notion that a president needs "to know what it is like for the people they are commanding" any more than they need to know what life is like for a lawyer, and a doctor, and an engineer, and a cashier, whose lives are all also influenced by the president. It's not as though the president is prone to taking direct operational control; in general, he sets out his goals and people who have actually risen through the military hammer out how it will happen, as I understand it. At most, a president is likely to choose among a couple of options he's given by the experts.

    As far as why I oppose the plan: It would amount to a definitive statement that the government owns part of your life, that you owe the government two years just by merit of being around. The government already feels that I owe it a portion of my money; a portion of my life is just taking it too far. Military has its own peculiar problems, in that people are called upon to risk their lives which I think can never be asked of an unwilling person, but even barring that, the idea that the government can simply lay claim to my body for two years is just unsettling and repulsive. To me, that's mentally similar to the government's laying claim to one of my kidneys, because someone else needs it and I can function fine without it. All true, but that would hardly make the governnment's move defensible.

    -Paul
  6. JalendaviLady Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 20, 2002
    star 4
    EnforcerSG: One of the main things that would have to be worked out in such a system would be other ways to become a citizen. Should someone with asthma be denied citizenship because a medical problem would make them be a liability on the battlefield? Should individuals whose personal morality is such that, while they support the troops and the government, they know that in a combat situation they would never be able to pull the trigger with another human in their sights be non-citizens simply because they recognize the money required to train them would be better used training someone who could fight?

    And then there's the problem of universal two-year service.

    First problem: when? Put it after college, people can pull stuff to delay entering. Put it before college, and remedial course work goes up.

    Second problem: how to decide who does what. Even if this is calculated through various testing, chances are the skill distribution won't match need.

    Third problem: what to pay in return. Should those who end up helping with literacy programs in poor neighborhoods get less than those in military duty, even though both are bound by law to do what they are doing for those 2 years? Even if it takes the form of funds for college, how much will be the maximum?

    Fourth problem: chances are, at least some people are going to be unable to serve at the time they are designated to enter (whether before or after college). Should an 18-year-old quadraplegic be told she will not ever be considered a full adult citizen because she is physically unable to complete 2 years of government service?
  7. EnforcerSG Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2001
    star 4
    First off, does everyone here know what I mean by a Heinlein system in terms of military service?

    JalendaviLady

    You misunderstand. I am not saying that military service is mandatory. It is just to be a full citizen (able to be elected to any office, easier to get whatever permits, maybe your vote counts for 2 or something, what it means to be a full citizen is up for debate) you must be in the military or serve the country in some major way. It is not universal at all.

    I feel that if anyone wants to serve their country or (in this hypothetical situation) become a citizen, they should be aloud to even if there is a disability. A place can be found for everyone. Your example of someone with asthma, maybe could be given a desk job, or a teacher in the military, or find another way to serve the country. Everyone should have a chance and it should not take much imagination at all to find a place for everyone who wants to serve.

    darth paul

    I feel that the commander in chief of the armed forces should have some idea of what it is like for the people under his command.

    And again, it is not a mandatory draft. It is just that those who serve get more rights than those who don't.
  8. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    No talk of a draft? Rumor on the internets?

    I especially liked this bit:

    The Bush administration has sworn up and down that it will never reinstate a draft. During the campaign last year, the president dismissed the idea as nothing more than "rumors on the Internets" and declared, "We're not going to have a draft -- period." Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, in an Op-Ed blaming "conspiracy mongers" for "attempting to scare and mislead young Americans," insisted that "the idea of reinstating the draft has never been debated, endorsed, discussed, theorized, pondered or even whispered by anyone in the Bush administration."

    That assertion is demonstrably false. According to an internal Selective Service memo made public under the Freedom of Information Act, the agency's acting director met with two of Rumsfeld's undersecretaries in February 2003 precisely to debate, discuss and ponder a return to the draft. The memo duly notes the administration's aversion to a draft but adds, "Defense manpower officials concede there are critical shortages of military personnel with certain special skills, such as medical personnel, linguists, computer network engineers, etc." The potentially prohibitive cost of "attracting and retaining such personnel for military service," the memo adds, has led "some officials to conclude that, while a conventional draft may never be needed, a draft of men and women possessing these critical skills may be warranted in a future crisis." This new draft, it suggests, could be invoked to meet the needs of both the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security.

    Emphasis mine.

    We truly did pick the right person to be president. mmmm....taste the sarcasm.

  9. JediBunny Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jan 13, 2005
    A Draft is nothing but a large scale senseless killing of the people in a nation who have only begun to enjoy life.
    It's absurd
    It's age discrimination
    It's just plain wrong.
  10. Vaderize03 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 25, 1999
    star 5
    As a physician, I would fight such a move tooth-and-nail.

    "Crisis" indeed. Iraq has turned out to be entirely unnecessary, and quite costly to boot.

    Peace,

    V-03
  11. farraday Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 7
    So....

    Back when the Democrats started bills to reinstate the draft People from the SSA talked to assistants at the DD who informed them that current military planning didn't forsee the neccesity of a indiscriminate draft however that certain skills might be useful at which point the SSA planned on how to perform a skill selective draft?

    Do you complain when the military draws up plans for wars with China too? Because doing that is a sign we want to fight China?


    Apparently any amount of planning is bad? It's been two years since then, the bills int he senate and the house died with the new congreess, once again, where is any evidence of any draft being initiated at any time in the next four years?
  12. Ben_Skywalker Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 20, 2001
    star 5
    the only way there'll be a draft is if we go to war with Iran and North Korea within the timeframe of several months to a year or two. the military is concerned with soldier numbers with just iraq and afghanistan. iran and north korea will be too much.

    so hold onto your panties and just live your lives. and if the time comes, serve your country with strength and honor and not with draft dodging and desertion. :)
  13. severian28 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 1, 2004
    star 5
    Good things can come from the most unlikely places. Im a pretty liberal guy and I think opening the draft may be the only way to truly see what kind of nation the American people want ( we ARE a relatively young nation ). I believe it would reinvigorate the common mans interest in politics and be a gut check to parents across the country who vote for any fool that uses the words " morals " and " values " as political tools.
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