A statement by the organizations listed below, November 18, 2019
The Commission on Military, National, and Public Service is at work right now to determine the fate of Selective Service (Draft) Registration, and they need to hear from you!
Congress established the National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service as part of the compromise reached by the Conference Committee during the 2017 NDAA (National Defense Authorization Act) process.
The Commission’s mandate is to consider issues of national service, both military and civilian, including important questions about Selective Service registration: should it continue, should women be required to register, and if it is to be maintained, what changes should be made to the Selective Service System. In its deliberations and public meetings, the Commission also has considered mandatory national service for all young people.
It has been decades since there has been a serious national conversation about Selective Service. This is a great opportunity to send a message to Congress that it is time to End Draft Registration Once and For ALL!
Draft registration has been a failure and a burden on millions of men. The vast majority of men violate the law by not registering willfully or timely as the law requires. Most young men today are registered through coercive means that are linked to other actions, such as applying for student financial aid or a driver’s license or state ID. If someone fails to register, these and other federal and state programs and services can be taken away, without due process.
Rather than continue this extra-judicial punishment for men or extend it to women, it’s time to end draft registration for everyone!
Requiring women to register for the draft does nothing to forward the movement for gender equality. To the contrary, feminist movements throughout history have included resistance to the undemocratic practice of conscription. The male-only draft already has been deemed unconstitutional by the courts. Striking down the draft and draft registration for everyone is the better path toward freedom and equality for all genders!
The Commission is scheduled to report its findings and make recommendations for the future of draft registration in March of 2020. They are taking public comment now and through the end of 2019.
Please share your views with the Commission today. Let them know you believe that
- Draft registration should be ended for everyone, not extended to women;
- All criminal, civil, federal and state penalties for failure to register must be ended and overturned for those currently living under these penalties;
- National service should remain voluntary – compulsory service, whether civilian or military, is in conflict with the principles of a democratic and free society.
The Commission is accepting public comments through the end of the year. Please submit written comments — by December 31, 2019 — through the Commission’s website, or by email using the subject line, “Docket 05-2018-01” to firstname.lastname@example.org
or by mail: National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service, Attn: RFI COMMENT—Docket 05-2018-01, 2530 Crystal Drive, Suite 1000, Room 1029 Arlington, VA 22202.
More information, including official statements already submitted from our partners, is linked below.
Veterans For Peace
War Resisters League