Thursday, March 19, 2009

Forced to Volunteer?

There is currently a bill that has passed the House. The "GIVE Act as it is affectionately known. You can read a summary here, or the full version here.

"...the bill's opponents...say it could cram ideology down the throats of young "volunteers," many of whom could be forced into service since the bill creates a "Congressional Commission on Civic Service. The bipartisan commission will be tasked with exploring a number of topics, including "whether a workable, fair and reasonable mandatory service requirement for all able young people could be developed and how such a requirement could be implemented in a manner that would strengthen the social fabric of the nation." [link]

Now don't get me wrong, I feel that if you want to give back to your community that is a wonderful thing. By all means go ahead and do what you feel you must do. The part that concerns me at this point (aside from the cost) is the mandatory service requirement. This has not been fully hashed out yet, but it could be a possibility. The main problem with this requirement is a little thing called the 13th Amendment. You know the one that abolished slavery and states: "Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction."

That part about involuntary servitude is a real deal killer there, or should be. Of course when you have an administration and a congress that don't give one damn about the United States Constitution who knows what they will enact or force the American people to do.