Readers React

The 'everyone but me' supporters of national service

To the editor: The four letters were unanimous in their endorsement of some sort of mandatory conscription or community service for all Americans. ("The national-service solution to inequality in America," Readers React, Jan. 11)

One reader wrote, "Every American should be willing to pay this small price to live in a country blessed with incredible freedoms and opportunities." Two other writers included that they themselves were veterans.

At the risk of immodesty, it's wise, when venturing a belief that "every American" should be required to give back, to reference one's own efforts to that end; otherwise it sounds as if "every American" means "everybody except me."

For example, you may have noticed how many members of the "hell no, we won't go" generation, no longer young themselves, have come to favor compulsory military service for today's youth.

Don't ask others to do any more than you're doing or already have done.

Kevin Dawson, Los Angeles

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