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5. Abolish Slavery! Part II

One common argument in favor of conscription-slavery is that everyone has an “equal obligation to serve” the U.S. government. But apart from the dubious morality of forcing everyone to suffer as much as everyone else, this equality of obligation is impossible to achieve, because not everyone can have equal time in the front lines. Only a few can be in the front lines, to say nothing of cripples, the physically handicapped, etc.

Another common argument for the draft is that this degree of compulsion is necessary for “defense.” But then the question arises: defense of whom? Logically, this can be either the defense of the drafted person himself, or the defense of other people. In short, we can conscript A either to defend himself, or to defend B, C, D, etc.

The idea that A should be drafted because it is necessary for his own defense is a rather peculiar one. If Mr. Jones needs to be in the army in order to defend himself, then one would think that he should be permitted to decide this for himself voluntarily, and would leap at the glorious chance offered to him. If he really needs to be in the army in order to defend himself, then he will see this and make the choice on his own; there is no need for the State to employ coercion to make him do it. Besides, the idea that adults should be forced to do things “for their own good” is a completely totalitarian one. It is good, let us say, for Mr. Jones to have X number of vitamins per day. Does that mean that he should be forced by law to consume this amount, and that a vast Gestapo of law enforcers be hired to see to it that de does not flout the majesty of the law?

Furthermore, enslavement is a peculiar kind of “defense” against some foe’s hypothetical future aggression against Mr. Jones. We may well ask: what kind of aggression would this mistily far-off “enemy” commit against Jones that would be worse, or nearly as bad as, being enslaved into an army in which he might well kill and be killed?

Nothing that any future and dimly seen enemy will do to him is likely to be as vicious as the action committed against him by “his” government, here and now. A curious kind of defense indeed!

And who, we may ask, is around now to defend Jones against the people who are aggressing against him to the point of enslaving him into a military machine? Who is there to defend the draftee against his self-proclaimed “defenders”?

For centuries governments have been trumpeting far-off bogeys as an excuse for enslaving and sending to their deaths people who could be no worse off if the bogey ever really materialized. It is about time that we call a halt. It is about time that we stop our rulers from using this kind of con game to justify slavery and murder on a massive scale.