You refer to "young, disadvantaged people" as those who would be the "first to get drafted." Who do you think the majority of the volunteers are now?
New York Times op-ed highlighted a study by Tim Kane and Mackenzie Eaglen that analyzed demographic data on every single enlistee, not just a sample, and found that youths from wealthy American ZIP codes are volunteering in ever higher numbers while enlistees from the poorest fifth of American neighborhoods fell nearly a full percentage point over the last two years, to 13.7 percent.
In 1999, that number was exactly 18 percent.
The Washington Post notes that the percentage of new African-American army recruits has "slipped dramatically over the past five years.”
In fiscal 2000, blacks made up 23.5 percent of army recruits; that number had by 2006 fallen to less than 14 percent, a 40 percent decrease. The percentage of female recruits has fallen during that same period by 23 percent, from 22 to 17 percent.
A study conducted by Millward Brown, a marketing and research firm, found that the desire not to die or be injured in a combat zone or even go to war or a combat zone was the leading single factor for (all youths) not joining the military, cited by 26 percent of those surveyed.
Twenty-one percent mentioned hostility to “military life,” and 20 percent" a not insignificant figure " objected to the military as an institution. The latter group did not believe in war or fighting or considered itself “pacifist.”
Even Fox news reported on the decline of black recruits-
"According to data obtained by The Associated Press, the decline covers all four military services for active duty recruits, and the drop is even more dramatic when National Guard and Reserve recruiting is included."
Talk about the wisdom of youth.
Also - there is the fact that in a draft situation, the richer kids, with parents working in higher positions, will have much more access to means of escaping the draft. And even if that doesn't happen, it has been proven that richer kids don't find their way to the front in the same numbers as poorer soldiers.
So, saying that a draft will make things fairer for the poorer is not true. At present, poor youth are doing a pretty good job of finding other ways of living their lives without interference - thank you.
But we should be concerned for all youth - not just the poor. It is shameful to say - "Well - if they have to put up with it, so should they". There should be NO drafting at all.
Why? Because it is about peoples civil liberty. The right to chose. The right to live your life with the freedom to choose.
... force, compulsion, conscription, involuntary servitude--for any role--whether as linguist or border guard or officer or foot soldier-- undermines a basic human right for people of all races and classes: free choice, especially over one's work and one's life. Furthermore--like the death penalty--conscription gives any state a power that is liable to be misused, and that is dangerous in the hands of those who see themselves as the embodiment of some ill-defined national interest.
March 19 / 20, 2005
A Draft By Any Other Name...Is Still Wrong
Exposing the Coming Draft
By TOM REEVES