Why The Lottery?

How many times have you heard, "If there were a Draft, there'd be riots in the streets over the Iraq war."??

Is this true? If the Draft were scheduled to be activated today. If you called your family to sit down together before the TV to watch them run the Draft Lottery. Watch them spin the two cages, one with birthdates, the other with numbers 1-366. And if you heard them call out your birthday as "Number 110!" - and so knew that you were going to be "called up" quite soon to the Induction Center for your physical. If all this were to happen today, what would your first response be? Are you prepared, right now, to respond?

PWH is going to run the Lottery and give you your Draft number. This is a "virtual draft" but the feelings you will have are real. Just come by and see for yourself; feel your initial gut response to, "I'm drafted! I'm 1-A!"

But also consider this: Don Olson of the Minnesota 8 often responds to that question this way:"Just listen to yourself. That's so stupid!" Don has the credentials to say that, in 1966 he formed "Students Against Selective Service" (SASS) and was a founding member of the Twin City Draft Information Center (TCDIC).

What does he mean? He means, having a Draft will not end the war. It will ensure that more young men and women will be injured and killed. Why, because as Frank Kroncke learned as he counseled young men at the Newman Center, "Over 99.9% of all the men I counseled, and this is in the hundreds, went to Vietnam." Why? Because the alternative to induction is five years in prison and/or a $250,000.00 fine or exile to another country. Exile means you can't come back to the States, not even to bury your parents or family members.

Tough decision. That's what getting a "1-A" card means. It confronts you with a life-altering decision. As Frank so often heard, "Look, I'm not violent. I don't want to kill anyone. But ..." And the "but" was followed by "my family," "my career," "my wife," "my girlfriend," "my small town," "my priest/rabbi/minister went to war," and so forth. Sound like the way you might be thinking? ... These are all good moral counters to the moral consequence of Resistance.

Most young men went down to the induction center hoping that they'd be sent to Germany or someplace other than Vietnam. If they went to Nam, they worked hard to get into non-combat jobs or units.

When the present "virtual draft" kicks into full operation, you'll understand why Frank often says, "Man, in the Sixties we were all up against the wall! It was either get trained to kill or go to federal prison or go to Canada or someplace and never be able to return home. Man, we were all cornered with no easy way out."

So, that's why PWH has engaged The Heart of the Beast Theatre (www.hobt.org) to re-enact the Selective Service System's Lottery. It's time - way past the time - for all 18-25 year olds - men and women - to begin to confront the grave consequences of what it means to be Drafted.


Lottery Objectives and Operations (continue)



The military Selective Service Draft has been activated!

What is your Lottery number? Click here to find out.