Military Service: Your Opinion Counts!

Effort: 10 minutes

+10 Points


(1) $100 e-gift card


In the U.S., we celebrate Veterans Day on Nov. 11, an annual remembrance honoring all those who served in the military, past or present. Many countries have mandatory military service. For those countries, the length of time and the minimum age varies (from 16 to 18). Around the world, there are three types of service:

  • Mandatory service: All males (and sometimes all females as well) of a certain age (usually 18, but sometimes 16) must serve their country for a minimum amount of time (usually 1-3 years).

  • De Jure compulsory service: Mandatory military service technically exists according to the law but is rarely (if ever) actually enforced. For example, the United States still requires all able-bodied males aged 18-25 to register with the Selective Service, meaning they could be drafted into military service if needed.

  • No service

    Your Task:

  1. If you’re interested, take a look at the list (or map) of countries and their service requirements. You can view Countries with Mandatory Military Service 2023 or the spreadsheet.

  2. Consider the questions: Do you think the U.S. should have mandatory service, De Jure service (as we have now), or no service? If you think the U.S. should have mandatory or De Jure, should it be all genders or only one? What ages? If not, what is your argument against service?

  3. Determine who is your senator: U.S. Senate.

  4. Write a 1-2 paragraph convincing letter to your Senator with your opinion.

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