More On Charlie Rangel And The Question Of The Draft

Just as when he first uttered the word "draft" before Bush-Cheny-neocons lied us into the Iraq War, Charlie Rangel's statement this past weekend about reinstituting the draft has drawn incredible fire. See my previous post with link.

However, let's step back from the incendiary reaction to the concept of the draft (and trust me, I understand this: I was furious with Jimmy Carter made it sound like a good idea back when I was in college).

What Rangel says makes sense if you look at thel reasons he gives for its consideration:

1. Right now, the all volunteer military draws all but a small percentage of its troops from the lowest income brackets and minorities.
2. The Pentagon targets high school students with high pressure recruitment efforts, again zeroing in on schools with a large population of lower income and minority families. This does not seem right.
3. When we have a draft in place, we are much less likely to go to war on less than solid reasons.
4. We would NOT have gone into Iraq if a draft had been in place before we did.

Why shouldn't military service be extended to the rich and upper middle class? To the George Bushes and Dick Cheneys of the world? Both Bush and Cheney effectively refused to serve when their country was at war in the 60s. But they're sure happy enough to send the sons and daughters, mothers and fathers of the poor, the unemployed, and the minorities into combat.