Thursday, May 06, 2004

A Return to the Draft?

Unlike many of my fellow Libertarians, I do not have a soft spot for those complaints of those currently serving in the military regarding being shipped overseas. It does not impress me if the complaint is over the nature of the opponent or the duration of the stay. After all, every soldier is a volunteer. This duty was chosen. Maybe the soldier did not read the fine print or failed tor eally get that enlisting does not simply mean putting on a uniform, getting a free education and some nifty travel opportunities. Caveat emptor, my friend. Caveat emptor.

I recall the history of the draft, and the Vietnam era especially comes to mind. I recall the burning of draft cards in demonstrations. I remember the indignant huffing over involuntary conscription. I agree with the objections to involuntary, forced service. It's slavery, simply put.

There was also an economic component to the protests- the idea that the poor would serve while the well-off and well-connected would go to college or find some other means of avoiding the draft. This seemed very plausible. Indeed, this argument has been put forth over and over with regards to George Bush and his Guard service.

What does it mean today when we see that Charlie Rangel, a Democrat and long-time advocate for the poor, now advocates for the draft?

Walter Williams discusses the draft in economic terms and establishes why having the draft leads to the greater chance that there will be more wars. What on earth is Rangel thinking?

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