Browse By

Information about Conscientious Objector status

A couple nights ago, I met a young college student who had been in Afghanistan with the military not too long ago. We were at a meeting about military recruiting, and how to protect high school students from the unscrupulous methods military recruiters will use to meet their quotas for fresh meat for Bush’s wars.

It turns out that this guy had successfully applied for conscientious objector status, while still a member of the military. After seeing what war was really like in Afghanistan, he decided that he could not take part in war any longer. It’s tricky for someone who has enlisted in the military, and then had a realization of conscience, but achieving an honorable conscientious objector discharge is possible.

He referred me to a web site that was helpful to him in his efforts, and I pass it along to others who are in the military even though have come to realize that war is the wrong way to solve problems. It’s called Peace Out. If you’re in the military and looking for a way to do the right thing, or if you know someone else who is in that position, check out the site, and pass it along.

One thought on “Information about Conscientious Objector status”

  1. Sarge says:

    You have to be very careful about your status and the things done to protect it. If the cannons are demanding more fodder, people who shouldn’t be taken often are, let them and the next people in charge worry about it: there are quotas.

    I knew two Amish boys who got drafted, stayed in 18 months before their hearing. At the time, people caught in that crunch were advised to cooperate, go along, “give the system a chance to work”. (No one who ever utters those words should be permitted to so much as cross the street without having to do that, in my opinion.) The upshot was they had been told every place they went from induction, reception, basic traing, AIT (turned out they were helicopter crew cheifs, go figure the irony)and finally in our unit they got their hearing. Several of us were tapped as witnesses, and just before the board started the president of the board, a full colonel, came out and told us that we would be asked certain questions and we were to answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’. No elaboration, no ‘but’ s would be tolerated or the next board would be a cout martial with the ‘yes butter’ as the star participant. We were asked if we had ever seen these two refuse to wear the uniform, any orders or duty, refuse to accept pay or discipline. We had to answer ‘no’. Did they conform to grooming standards, do the work they were assigned, render courtesy, and a couple of other things. Answer, yes. So, their consciensious objector status was considered void. And they were reprimanded for wasting the board and the army’s time. So much for cooperation. But on the other hand, had they actively resisted they would have been given a real treat, confinement in a military prison which would have been less enjoyable. Catch22.

    My first tour in Viet Nam we had a medic who had CO status, to get it and be guarenteed that he would not carry a rifle he had to strike a deal in which he enlisted for four years, but it included a letter from the secretary of defence and the secretary of the army and one or two other muckety mucks which GUARENTEED that he would not be required to carry a rifle. He didn’t even have to qualify in basic. He was a very brave man, took risks that still make my hair stand on end to think of them, got quite a few awards. Then we got a ne commanding officer. This man felt that if you wouldn’t kill for your country you were a shit-eating coward, and he insisted that this man carry a rifle and act as a rifleman. No more medic. Gave him an order. He went to everyone he could, “gave the system a chance to work” even thought the system was supposed to have ALREADY worked, but he was told to do what he was told, THEN complain. He showed his guarrentees to the captain who tore them up right in front of him. He, apparently, trumped his boss. Last I saw Danny, we were on an ambush, he shook hands with each of us and walked off into the bush. Have no idea what ever happened to him.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Psst... what kind of person doesn't support pacifism?

Fight the Republican beast!