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Should the military reistitute a military draft? Essay

I do not agree with the reinstitution of a military draft. In 1973 the military draft was lifted in the United States and with good reason. The United States should not rely on a draft to fill military vacancies but rely on recruitment. It is true that the military offers incentives and luxuries that some civilians could not afford otherwise such as food, shelter, and medical care. However, they are just that, incentives. The military is an option and should remain that way. Many enlist for different reasons, some with economical reasons, others with strong political urges, but they enlist out of their own desires, beliefs, and more importantly, free will. Some see the military as a way of life; others see it as the only way to educate themselves in a society where education is valued so highly. With rising tuition costs, many enlist in the reserves as a guarantee for their degree. College is costly and even with the aid of tuition assistance and can leave a graduate drowning in debt. These are all choices all college bound 18-25 year olds make and some just do not have the luxury of choosing.

“One way to avoid a lot more wars is to institute the draft.” (Senator Fritz Hollings). “That’s a statement that reflects gross economic ignorance. In terms of incentives, it produces the opposite effect. Why? The draft is used because the wage the military offers isn’t high enough to get what’s deemed as a sufficient number of people to volunteer.” (Walter E. Williams). Obviously, in comparison to a volunteer military, the draft is cheaper in the time of war. I say this because the military does not have to pay the high wages as incentive to get volunteers. The Defense Department has a lower labor expense and the draft disguises the true cost of war.

Everyone has a duty to defend his or her country. In addition, I think that if you are involved directly or indirectly in the production or supplying goods to these soldiers than you are participating in the defense of your country. The Defense Department might argue that a draft is needed because it would be too expensive to pay market wages to get the desired number of soldiers. It would be right as far as the military budget is concerned but wrong when it comes to military’s true cost to the country. The opportunity cost of a soldier in the army is the value of what he could have produced, and society must sacrifice, if he or she were not enlisted. Even if the military paid nothing, the country would still relinquish what he or she would have produced if not in the military.

“National defense is an important government function; for rational decision-making, we mustn’t permit concealment of its cost through measures like the draft.” (Walter E. Williams).

Works Cited

1. www.cnn.com, Reinstating the Military Draft, Williams, 2004.

2. http://hallxtra.swlearning.com, econdebate.

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