And How the Country’s Peace-loving Kids Can Respond
David Swanson / World BEYOND War
(December 18, 2021) — Most US states still have excuses when asked to make voter registration automatic, but in various states — including here in Virginia — draft registration is automatic even for 15-year-olds who want a learner’s permit to drive a car. (This is still only for males, as Congress did not, in the end, extend draft registration to females, at least until next year — once in a while Democrats’ obeisance to Republicans works out well.) The application for the learner’s permit in Virginia, for which you must be 15-and-a-half-years-old, says:
“Generally males under age 26 must register with the Selective Service. If you are required by federal law to register with the Selective Service, you must authorize DMV to forward your personal information to the Selective Service unless you have already registered.”
If you are under age 18, your parent or guardian must sign your application authorizing the Selective Service to register you when you turn age 18. Law prohibits DMV from issuing any type of driver’s license or ID card to an applicant who is required by federal law to register with the Selective Service but who refuses to authorize DMV to send his information to the Selective Service. If you have questions about Selective Service registration, visit the Selective Service website at www.sss.gov or call 847-688-6888 (TTY: 847-688-2567).”
So, you’re registered to be registered, because you are required by federal law to be registered, except that you are not so required, because you are not 18 years old, so you’re not really registered, you’re just, you know, registered. At 15 YEARS OLD. To kill people. For the profits of weapons companies and whatever else you believe it’s for — killing people.
So, what can a 15-year-old do who wants to drive a car but not sign up for the unselective nonservice?
Some advise this approach: Don’t register online! Instead, go to the DMV or post office and properly complete two Selective Service registration forms. Write, “I am conscientiously opposed to war” clearly on the front of both forms. Address envelopes to the Selective Service System and to yourself.
Both will be postmarked on the same date. The Selective Service won’t pay attention to what you’ve written and you’ll be registered. When you receive the envelope through the mail, don’t open it. Instead keep it with your important things.
If there’s a draft that you are unable to ignore or avoid, you will need to claim an opportunity to plead your case in front of your local draft board. Bring the sealed envelope; photograph it and then open it in front of them. Explain that your opposition to war didn’t suddenly materialize when the draft was reinstituted.
What can the rest of us do? Tell the US Congress to repeal the so-called Selective Service.