Honest Abe instituted the first draft, but his idea allowed the richer folks(approximately 6% of those drafted)to buy their way out, which in turn led to rioting by those not able to 'pass the buck'. Some folks saw student deferment as another way of buying one's way out of service, as people in the lower economic brackets generally couldn't afford University, therefore were unable to use that particular deferment.
The draft ended with the Nixon presidency, after Vietnam, and The United States hasn't had a draft since.
So, what are the rules?
Well, the first to be called up will be men who turn 20 during the calendar year. After that 21 year olds,22 year olds and so on.....18 and 19 year olds are the last to be called to service.
"The Artful Dodger"...............
There are some viable excuses to avoid the draft:
1. Enter the Priesthood
2. Commit a Crime
3. Be a Farmer
4. Get elected to Congress
Seriously?.......Getting elected to Congress is probably out for most of you, but just think how easy it would be to commit a crime(I'm kidding, relax!) Though I did read that being an ex-convict is not a fool-proof ticket home.
I'm thinking the draft would be a boon to my very own Catholic Church who is always looking for a few good men to fill our current Priest shortage. The biggest surge in divinity school and ordinations was in 1965 according to the Wikipedia, looks like Vietnam may have been responsible for the vocations of many of our clergy.
My 10 year old son told me just a few weeks ago that he thinks he might like to serve in the military. I admire our men and women who serve over there. I am in awe of the dedication and the sacrifice that the troops and their families exhibit. With that said, personally, I pray for a quick exit from Iraq and that my children will never have to consider the draft or military service. I pray that they will never face danger for an unjust war that is more about glory and oil than preservation of human rights........ "I'm selfish that way".