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View Diary: How I Dodged the Draft: A Vietnam Story (142 comments)

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  •  So, do you know who served instead of you (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jack 1966, rduran

    and what happened to him? After all, your draft board didn't say, "Oh gee, we're one short this month," they picked someone else who essentially got drafted in your place.

    •  I was born after the war ended. (13+ / 0-)

      But if somebody resists, that's his choice. If somebody chooses not to resist. That is his choice.

      Tyrion Lannister: "It's not easy being drunk all the time. Everyone would do it if it were easy."

      by psychodrew on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:56:03 AM PDT

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    •  and if he said "NO!" (15+ / 0-)

      ... and the next one did as well?

      Suppose they gave a war and no one came.

      When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

      by PhilJD on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 06:58:41 AM PDT

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      •  But you didn't just say "no." (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mikidee

        You could have stood on principle.  Instead, you contrived to argue your own unfitness, and when you perceived that didn't work you spit on someone.  Not that it would have mattered.

        •  I think you're misapplying Ali's experience (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          PhilJD, TracieLynn, JesseCW, melfunction

          Ali was older, richer, a cultural and sports hero.  Phil had far fewer resources and was trying to squeak through college on his last few dollars.  And were his principles so different from Phil's:

          Ali said:

           “I ain’t got no quarrel with those Vietcong.”

          Phil said:

          "there was really no chance at all I would ever try to kill some Vietnamese guy who was just defending his country and home"

          Where is the big difference in principle there?

          After a day of humiliation Phil talks to the one guy he might think would listen to why he can't kill Vietnamese and the guy just patronizes him.

          I've got friends who dodged the draft and I've got friends who served.  I don't judge any of them for their decisions.  What I say is this:  18-20 is a damned young age to be confronted with these life or death choices.

          I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

          by Satya1 on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 09:34:59 AM PDT

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          •  It's surprising how many people seem to have (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Satya1, JesseCW

            skipped the diary and gone straight to the punchline. Thanks for reading the whole thing, lol, and for getting it.

            When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

            by PhilJD on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 10:01:19 AM PDT

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            •  Thanks again for writing the diary (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              PhilJD, JesseCW, OleHippieChick

              The irony is also not lost on me.  The one guy whose job one might think would be interested in your feelings and principles on the matter, only appears to want to screen you.  He's there to make sure you're not too crazy to disrupt your unit, but just crazy enough to go along with the idea of killing other people even though by that date the ratio of Americans that oppose the war to those who support it is 2:1.  And the doctor's (psychiatrists are MDs) first duty is to the military and not the "patients".

              I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

              by Satya1 on Mon Mar 10, 2014 at 11:28:17 AM PDT

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            •  Nope, read through the whole thing (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Neuroptimalian

              The punchline just ruined it for me.  I imagine a number of others feel the same way.  Hey, it's your story, and it's from a lifetime ago.  Nobody's so hard up that they're pulling out pitchforks over it, but man to man that act was the very definition of "being a dick."  I hope if you met Dr. Mumble-mumble today you'd have the decency to apologize.

          •  Not saying the principles were different (0+ / 0-)

            But unless we're talking about a child prodigy here Phil's only a couple of years younger than Ali was in 1966.  And for what resources Ali had at that point in his career--two years after he took the heavyweight championship--he was still an African American classified as 1-A, was convicted and lost every stage of his appeal until the Supreme Court.  A good number of Black dissenters--Walter Collins and David Bell, for example--weren't as lucky, but they didn't assault anyone either.

            •  LOL (0+ / 0-)

              You're still overreaching.  I find it amusing that you go from the specific "spitting" to the vague and hugely more violent "assault".

              Ironically, all along ignoring the crime which is greater by many orders of magnitude.  You clearly don't understand the context of the times.

              I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

              by Satya1 on Tue Mar 11, 2014 at 08:04:22 AM PDT

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              •  Because that's what it was (0+ / 0-)

                Assault.  That psychiatrist committed no crime in evidence nor was he an accomplice to •any* crime in evidence.

                Explain to me how the context of the time excuses assault against--by all accounts--a completely innocent man.

                •  Yes (0+ / 0-)

                  and using the word "assault" instead of "spitting" clarifies the facts so well because spitting is the first thing we think about when one mentions "assault".  It's just another rhetorical trick to project your own narrative.

                  You project all kinds of "facts" that you choose into this narrative and 1) you weren't there, 2) probably weren't alive at the time and don't understand the experience at all, 3) deliberately overlook the greater injustices done to Phil and others like him.

                  I'm not going to do the historical research you need.  I'm done.  Your continued projection of your own version of "facts" for which you cannot know ("a completely innocent man") betrays a mind that operates with multiple layers of self deceit.

                  I sincerely wish you a good life.

                  I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

                  by Satya1 on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 07:20:36 AM PDT

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    •  No one was drafted after Phil (0+ / 0-)

      Specifically, no one was drafted after Command Sgt. Maj. Jeff Mellinger.  Lotteries continued until December 1972 for 1973 inductions, but those orders were never cut.

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