The value of compulsory service

Posted9/14/2021 1:00 AM

If young people had to spend two years serving their country by either joining the military or participating in some form of a peace corps, I believe this would help a large percent of those trying to find themselves, or in need of help, etc.

In 1964 my draft number was 18. I was not in college so I had no deferment. I had to do something or I was destine for Vietnam, a war that we never should have been in and cost over 58,000 Americans their life.


I decided to enlist in the Air Force, learn a profession to help me later in life. All of a sudden, I was in a barracks filled with other young men of all colors, religions from all over America. I had my head shaved, was issued uniforms and was told what to do and how to do it for the next eight weeks of my life.

I was introduced to discipline, uniformity, regimentation. I was taught how to conform, respect others, become a man and be part of a team. For the next four years, I had to live by rules and regulations, meeting the expectations of my superiors.

I realized I was as competent as the officers I worked with. This experience was a game changer for me and would be for many others if serving your country were mandatory. I bet the percent of young people this would help would be high.

If we want to help troubled, confused, uncertain young people, then try this approach ... mandatory service / peace corp for all Americans either after high school or college. This could be what many young people need to be good citizens, live a comfortable life.

Bob Shea


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