Monday, March 11, 2019

What Was The Question Again?

The question before us today: Should women be required to register for the draft?
This is the path my brain traveled: People are still registering for the draft? I guess they are because the question was about getting half the people who would be eligible at eighteen to do what the other half was doing. It was eighteen, wasn't it? I remember, vaguely, having to fill out some paperwork when I turned eighteen and being incensed at the idea that I was potentially signing my life away before I could legally buy a drink but since there was 3.2 beer in Colorado at the time I could still get drunk legally but it would just mean more trips to the bathroom. Did my son register for the draft? I seem to recall his frustration running in a similar vein, but without the 3.2 beer because who would drink that swill anyway? Probably the kids who were forced to register for the draft and they wanted some mildly acceptable way to vent their spleen before they reported for active duty. Didn't my mom have a plan to keep my older brother out of Vietnam? Something about taking his motorcycle and riding north to Canada to escape a much crueler fate than all the ice and snow. My older brother was never in any specific danger since he was fifteen when the draft ended. But did he have to go back and register for the draft? I imagine that my younger brother did. I don't know. I don't have a sister, so I don't have any way to measure the outrage felt by her being counted out of this experience. There was also no plan for my mother to stay or flee, since she was busy marshaling her own forces on a daily basis. My father was drafted. This became the source of decades of stories and revelations regarding his hitch in the service, one that sounded a little like a cross between Animal House and GI Blues. Was he stationed in Germany before or after Elvis?
Wait. This is an opinion piece. "Should" is the question. Do I believe women should be compelled to sign up for a lottery's chance to serve their country? Would that be more in line with our feminist future? Or would that be surrendering to the dogs of war and the horrifying notion of a need for every American to have a chance to come home in a box? Registering for national service might make the pill easier to swallow for everyone. The idea that every American could have a chance to serve their country without having to carry a gun seems a lot more palatable.
If you're asking my opinion. Otherwise, you'll just be happy with the random associations I was able to make as a result of the question in the first place.

No comments: