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The thought of a child being sent off to war is very upsetting. The first excerpt of this week’s collection of letters clearly shows that the 15-year old writer was not ready for the responsibilities of being a United States soldier. He existed for only 18 years on earth, dying at the age equivalency of a high school senior, such as I.
I believe people shouldn’t be sent away to war, unless their age permits them to do so as well as their own free will. One compliments the other. Being drafted, to me, appears like being sent off to a slaughterhouse, but only for those who are of perfect physical condition and health. That’s right, take the best of the best and send them to their deaths. I wonder if the next war (if there is one) will be the first to draft females. With womens’ rights activists on the prowl, it’s a sure thing.
The complications of war are a mystery to me. Discipline and reform are used in a way that frightens people into a system of rule and order. It’s like teaching a child not to step out of line for fear of extreme punishment. If people who would truly “fight for their country” wanted to be successful at it, could a system of written rules and regulations that aren’t as dramatic be just as efficient as a boot camp? I don’t know if people can truly learn anything by method of fear and degradation, but it may be a possibility. I believe that if someone is to be taught to be a strong person, they’ve got to be confident, not ashamed. This is one reason why I would rather have my left eye gauged out than be forced to join the military.
These are just a few of my views concerning the concept of war, but keep in mind I have nothing to back them up. I just wish there were other alternatives than war to settle a dispute, and other people should see this, too. I’m sure someday after the world destroys itself, the last person left will be pondering the same idea.
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