“A personal commitment of time, energy and talent to a mission that contributes to the public good by protecting the nation and its citizens, strengthening communities or promoting the general welfare.” That’s how the National Commission on Military, National and Public Service (NCMNPS) officially defines service.
“It’s time to talk about a culture of service,” Commission Chairman Joe Heck told reporters Wednesday at the release of an interim report, “where Americans not only aspire to serve, but face no barriers.”
Remove the impediments where possible, sure.
But the Commission, as created by Congress, is primarily charged with looking into whether draft registration should continue, and if so, whether to expand it to women.*
Face it, military conscription doesn’t have anything at all to do with “service.” Not by the NCMNPS’s own definition — or any reasonable one. Surely the commissioners weren’t thinking that “personal commitment” could simply be coerced.
The NCMNPS is also “exploring what a program that requires every American to complete a dedicated period of military, national, or public service might look like.”
Stop. It won’t resemble freedom.
Why even consider coercing young people? The All-Volunteer Force is working well and creating a massive civilian chain-gang will be expensive.
“There is an overwhelming desire to serve,” Chairman Heck confirmed. But he explained that while young people “want to do it. They just don’t want to be told to do it.”
Sounds 100-percent American to me.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.
* Nearly four decades ago, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the current male-only registration program specifically predicated on women being blocked from combat roles. All those roles are now open to women. Eventually, a case will get back to the High Court, which will very, very likely strike down a registration program that does not include young women.
You can share your own opinion with the Commission here.