LBJ Signs New Slave Law


Fifth Estate # 34, July 15-31, 1967

from L.A. Free Press (UPS)

Last week President Johnson signed into law the 1967 draft law extension thereby allowing the government to impress young men into involuntary servitude ’til at least 1971.

In every respect the revision intensifies the coercive and regimentive features of the old law. Here are the gruesome details of the extension, which will be in effect.

College students—undergraduates, that is -may rejoice if their grades are low, for even low grade college students will be exempted now. The campaign to create class-type antagonisms between the drop—outs and the obedience in our colleges and schools is now clear as an obvious attempt is being made to herd everyone into some framework in which he can be properly controlled.

Henceforth, if you can stay in school, even by the skin of your teeth, your local board will not even check on your grade point. If you don’t have the money to go to school, well, you may end up upside down in a helicopter in a rice paddy.

That’s the best part. Now the rest.

Graduate students apparently will be drafted only if their work is not deemed essential to the national interest. They will probably keep that one vague and flexible so that they can harass grad students whose political and personal beliefs and actions are “out of tune” with the times.

And for those who took a little more comfort every day in the progress they had been making toward the age of 26: If you’re almost there you may be OK for a while. But if you are now 24 you will be happy to know that all your aging may have been in vain, because the Man is coming after you right after he has cornered all the 19-year-olds he can.

From 24 the hot seat shifts to the age of 23, then 22, 21 and in that order.

And lastly Sarge has a little something for you punks and fairies who have been hiding behind that shit about thou shalt not kill. From now on you have to prove to your local board that you have specific religious training that has forced you to become a conscientious objector.

The language of the extension states that “the Board’s decision cannot be based upon a merely personal belief.” That means no more Catholic or Methodist or Adventist C.O.s—only the sects which require C.O.ism, like Mennonites and Brethren and Quakers will make it.

The urgent and unmistakable implication of this C.O. state of affairs is that the head and drop out types must immediately get their religions incorporated so that they, like the Boo-Hoos of the Neo-American Church, can get off with the blessings of the church functionaries.

The proposals for draft by lottery were rejected in the interest of direct, conscious manipulation of the merely personal lives of America’s young men.