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While watching the riots in Baltimore, considered a possible solution to the situation of so many young black men who are uneducated, unemployed, and otherwise not socialized: a return to the draft.
I recall Ed Koch, the former Mayor of New York, saying that the only vote he regretted when he was in Congress was the vote to end the draft. He explained that the draft took young men out of the inner city and placed them in a highly structured and disciplined environment. The mayor went on to say that many of the young men matured and developed a direction to pursue in life. When I was in the Army, strong black sergeants were often the toughest on young black soldiers. For the first time, many of the young soldiers were experiencing a strong male figure.
As a conservative, I recognize that a draft is a significant infringement of personal liberty. However, the situation is dire and the times require drastic measures. In addition to the benefits of military life, the soldiers could pursue their education through the G.I. Bill and return to civilian life as contributing members. I know that the military should not be used as a social welfare organization. However, the military would also benefit with a significant increase in manpower and by an expansion of the percentage of the population that experiences the sacrifices of military service. Something must be done to break the dysfunctional cycle that exists in most of our major cities. Mandatory military service could be part of the solution.