Should the United States have mandatory military conscription?
Military conscription in the United States, commonly called as draft has been a highly debated topic, discussed at multiple levels and forums. There are a lot many people who support this idea, but there are many who are against it as well. This argumentative essay will analyze this topic and arrive at a conclusion on whether US should adopt mandatory military conscription practice.
The reasons that drive a Government to make the military service mandatory can be varied, depending on the socio-economic, political and geographic position of the country. Nations like Israel or South Korea, with lesser population and troubled neighborhood may have to go after conscription as a means to augment their voluntary force and enhance their national security. Stable European nations like Germany, Switzerland, Finland and Austria may have implemented it for a different set of reasons. With the most technologically advanced military force in the world and no dearth of people volunteering to join the military, it may look like the mandatory military conscription may not be an immediate necessity for US.
However, there are numerous factors that go in favor of implementing a mandatory military service. Serving the highly disciplined military, even for a short period of time will help the youth to inculcate a sense of patriotism, responsibility and belongingness to the nation. Also, the draft army can be utilized during peace time activities as well such as serving the public in the event of a natural calamity. It also helps in a better distribution of burden during war and equips youngsters to take up or face bigger challenges in their lives. Yet another benefit of implementing a mandatory military service is that it helps in solving many of the social ills such as drug addiction, violent crimes and obesity. Also, it eliminates the social imbalance of poor going to the war all over the world to protect the rich and their interests back home.
Above mentioned are some of the arguments floating around that supports this idea. Let us now look into the other side of the coin. It may be true that the military service inculcates responsibility and discipline in one’s life. But it is not true that people who prefer not to join the military are all undisciplined and irresponsible. Also, it may be better to leave the decision to the individuals as they get the liberty to choose their career, which interests them. An uninterested and complacent soldier may do more bad than good, whether be it in war or peace. Also, mandating the service goes against the very principle of the nation, which stands for individual liberty and freedom. It is also a point to ponder that a person with a great potential to become a good scientist or an engineer or a doctor will be fighting a war as he was compelled to join the armed forces. As mentioned earlier, the military forces across the world are getting more and more tech savvy and are in the process of reducing the strength of their foot soldiers. U.S is considered as a pioneer in this front and also, there is no dearth of people who are willing to join the military voluntarily. So why is it required to enforce it by law?
So, what should be the interpretation from this analysis? It makes perfect sense to have a mandatory military conscription. However, the purpose of which will not be just to fight the war along with the full timers, but to educate and indoctrinate the youngsters to make them understand about the value of leading a responsible and disciplined life and help them grow into mature and well behaved adults capable of contributing to the welfare of the nation. The training will help them get an idea of the hardships faced by the brave soldiers fighting in foreign lands to protect the interests of the nation and its citizens and more importantly equips them to appreciate and value the efforts of these brave hearts. The mandatory military conscription should be limited to one year and should be done before an individual attains 25 years of age. Post this, the individual should be at liberty to decide on whether he/she wants to continue serving the military or want to pursue his other interests. This practice will definitely help in upholding the pride and might of United States for the many years to come.