Reviving the Draft: New Proposal Includes Fortunate Ones and Senators’ Sons

| January 10, 2003

Last September, President Bush accused the Senate of not caring about national security. Senator Tom Daschle challenged Bush to apologize to Senator Inouye of Hawaii—who lost a limb in World War II—for saying that he was not concerned about the security of the American people. It seems the measure of a true patriot starts with whether you’ve ever seen any action on the battle field.

Well if New York Congressman Charles Rangel gets his way, we will all have an opportunity to become real patriots, reports Bill Berkowitz on Rep. Rangel (D-NY) intends to introduce legislation to reinstate the military draft. Every American would be obliged to either serve under the armed forces or get involved in community service projects that would include everything from child care to environmental clean-up.

Rangel argues that the U.S. military has historically been made up of minorities and poor whites, and if congressmen and well-to-do constituents knew their children would be sent into battle, they would probably be more apt to work with the international community to find better options than war for solving the world’s problems.

--Nick Garafola

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