From the July 2005 Idaho Observer:
The Case Against Military Drafts and Conscriptions
The draft is coming. America is bracing itself. Fortunately for tomorrow’s draftees, only the uninformed or the willing have to be drafted.
We have the knowledge that absence of a SSN makes people ineligible for the draft. We also have the Paredes decision: Petty Officer Pablo Paredes, U.S. Navy, was facing a year in prison for refusing to get on a ship bound for Iraq. But a military judge observed, "I think that the government has successfully proved that any service member has reasonable cause to believe that the wars in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan and Iraq were illegal," and sentenced him to three months hard labor, two months restriction and reduced his rank to seaman.
In U.S. v. Seeger (1965) the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that conscientious objectors are not obligated to be drafted into military service and even defined winning and losing conscientious objector arguments with specificity.
Aside from contemporary avenues whereby one can avoid fighting and dying in corporately-inspired wars of aggression in foreign lands, the draft has been deemed a violation of the very freedoms that gave birth to the notion of this country since General Washington proposed conscription during the Revolutionary War.
An excellent compendium on the subject is a booklet entitled "The Case Against Military Drafts and Conscriptions" by Charles A. Weisman. The booklet highlights New Hampshire Rep. Daniel Webster’s 1814 comments in opposition to the draft proposed for the (ongoing) War of 1812 and the opinions of U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger B. Taney on a conscription act passed by Congress to create Union cannon fodder for the Civil War.
Webster’s lengthy address in the House exhibited his extreme opposition to the draft as the antithesis of liberty and the very definition of hypocrisy in a free republic. "A free government with arbitrary means to administer it is a contradiction; a free government without adequate provisions for personal security is an absurdity; a free government with an uncontrolled power of military conscription is a solecism, at once the most ridiculous and abominable that ever entered into the head of man," Webster stated.
Taney’s opinion was an eloquent statement of the unconstitutionality of conscription and one of the strongest arguments in favor of states’ rights ever published.
Justice Taney used Article 4, Section 2, Clause 2 of the Constitution to prove state sovereignty. He then stated, "It follows from what is above stated that the federal government has no inherent and original powers of sovereignty. It only has what the States delegated—and any exercise of sovereign power beyond these limits would be a usurpation of State sovereignty—and consequently illegal."
The Case Against Military Drafts and Conscriptions, and other booklets by Weisman, is available through Robert Fox by calling (903) 541-2482.
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