Another step toward the near-complete militarization of society is contained in the sure-to-become law soon (UPDATE: The White House is now threatening to veto the bill over a separate funding issue) National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the legislation that controls much of how the military works. Tucked inside is a new provision: women will, for the first time in our nation’s history, have to register for the draft in the United States.
Under current law, all men ages 18 to 26 are required to register for possible involuntary military service with the Selective Service System. Women have always been exempt, and past legal challenges have pointed to restrictions placed on their military service as a reason for their exclusion.
But earlier this year, Defense Secretary Ash Carter opened all military jobs to women, negating that argument.
Presumably women will fall under the same rules as men regarding registration. A young man who fails to register is ineligible for federal student financial aid, state-funded student financial aid in many states, most federal employment, some state employment, security clearance for contractors, job training under the Workforce Investment Act, and U.S. citizenship for immigrant men. If the man never registers by age 26, there is no almost no way retroactive way to do it, meaning those benefits will be denied for a lifetime.
Defense Department leaders have already backed the idea of adding women to the draft, while also emphasizing they do not see any scenario where a draft will actually happen. No Americans have been pressed into involuntary military service since the last draft ended in 1973.
Question: if there is no draft will actually happen scenario, and no one has been drafted since 1973, and the whole system of maintaining records on every American citizen of age costs a boatload of cash, why have selective service registration at all?
Answer: Another step toward the near-complete militarization of society.