Letters to the Editor

Let’s reinstate the draft and save kids’ lives

AP file photo

I see in the newspaper and on the news, stories about how our young people are committing crimes or OD’ing on drugs. No one seems to have a solution to the problem. I believe I have a good solution.

First, we reinstitute the military draft but in a limited way. All young people (male and female) when they are 18 and out of school, with exception of those who are continuing their education, one way or the other would be drafted for a period of one year in the states (no deployment). They would be sent to a military base to serve their one year service just like everybody that enters the military. After the year is up, they would have two options: 1. receive an honorable discharge and return to private life, or 2. reenlist with the chance of furthering their education and learn new skills so when they leave the service, they have the ability to find a job in the field in which they studied.

This is my reasoning. I know when kids leave school, a lot of them think now they are adults and nobody can tell them what to do or where to go, as I did. We have seen a lot of them end up in gangs, start doing drugs and dying. Anyone who has served in the military will tell you that when you arrive at boot camp, things change and change quickly.

Suddenly you are no longer in control of your life, the drill instructors are. They tell you when to go to bed, when to get up, when to eat, how to dress and when you can speak. The idea that a recruit who is 6 feet, 200 pounds, will have to stand there with a drill instructor 5 feet 5 inches, 140 pounds standing there and screaming right into his face and he (she) has to stand there and not blink, speak or move is eye-opening. You learn that every decision has a consequence — not only to you, but to your fellow recruits.

After spending eight weeks in basic training and eight weeks in advance training, you come away with a whole new outlook and what you have to do to succeed in life.

I know that not everybody will learn new life lessons, but if we can save a lot of kids’ lives and add great new citizens to society, then it would be well worth the time, trouble and expense.

Ronald J Perano