Monday, May 21, 2007
The Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors supports and promotes individual and collective resistance to war and preparations for war.While most of us are teaching our kids to avoid violence, the US military is extolling the virtues of war. Junior ROTC programs are sprouting like weeds around the country — they’re now in over 2800 high schools.
The draft ended and the military had to get sneakier — along with JROTC we now have the poverty draft. The Pentagon spends $2 billion on recruiting. They entice youth into the military with promises of college and job training: sounds like a great way out. Eventually, young people learn the truth — instead of being caught in drive-bys, they’re doing fly-bys.
In 1968 we joined together to protest killing and war. We mobilized successfully against the Vietnam War, but haven’t been able to free our government from its militaristic ways. The Gulf War, the poverty draft, Junior ROTC, hazing, racism, sexual harassment and abuse are all dangers of an unchallenged military. It’s time again to act.
The Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors has been there continuously since 1948, helping people who get caught in the military’s we. We still help them get out, just like we helped people get out of the tragedy of Vietnam. Now we need your help.
CCCO is an independent, non-profit organization funded primarily by voluntary, tax-deductible contributions. Because of the nature of our work, it is difficult for us to obtain support from large foundations or corporations. Not surprisingly, none of our money comes from the government. Thus, we rely on people of conscience — people like you — to give generously. You make this work possible.
The military and its recruiters are present in almost every school in the United States. Recruiters are at schools to sell students military enlistment, using half-truths and outright deception. We believe the military’s sales pitch should not go unchallenged.
Despite the military's yearly recruiting budget of $1.9 billion, activists in local communities have gained some astounding organizing victories.
- Three school districts ban recruiters entirely; in dozens more, activists give alternative presentations in classrooms and career days.
- The military's Adventure Van was stopped from making visits to schools in the entire state of Minnesota.
- A peace flotilla greets the Navy's Great Lakes Recruiting Cruise every year.
- The 1996 expansion of Junior ROTC ended with 900 fewer new units than initially planned, thanks in large part to community protest.
200,000 young people enlist in the military every year. Those who made a mistake don’t know where to turn.
In the year 2000, CCCO and our partners on the GI Rights Hotline will answer 11,800 calls from members of the military seeking information about discharges, grievance and complaint procedures and other civil rights.
We also publish Helping Out: A Guide to Military Discharges and GI Rights, the most comprehensive reference work on military discharges in print.
CCCO’s Third World Outreach program seeks to address the historical relationships between Third World people and militarism; establish community-wide dialogues on issues of military recruiting, militarism of public schools, and our rich tradition of resistance to militarism; and to work in coalition with other national and local groups and organizers, and to organize, inform and aid our communities in fighting the “economic conscription” of young people. Our REAL STORY campaign focuses on organizing 50 or more Equal Access presentations in inner city schools in Philadelphia, New York, Boston, Washington, DC, and Oakland.
The fourth edition of CCCO’s youth ‘zine, produced in collaboration with War Resister League’s YouthPeace program, will include a Hip Hop CD sound track! Over 25 artists affiliated with CCCO’s Third World Outreach Program will contribute to the expanded ‘zine.
Volunteering with CCCO
We are looking for a few good men and women to work for peace — both in our Oakland and Philadelphia offices and in communities across the country.
Volunteer to answer the GI Rights Hotline in our Oakland office! Or support the Hotline by helping out with mailings and other support work.
Confront the military recruiting trucks when they come to your community. Contact us to be put on our alert list.
Don’t let the recruiters have access to your local school unchallenged. Take CCCO materials to your local guidance counselors office and ask that they be placed next to the recruiting brochures, table at a career day fair, or place ads in the high school newspaper telling young people they can get out of the Delayed Enlistment Program.
Our Freeman Bristol Internship is open to young people every summer. Contact us for details at (888) 236-2226 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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