A poignant e-mail that sort of makes my point:
I am no devotee of this open-borders nonsense, but the simple fact of the matter is that we as a society are not producing enough people willing to join the ranks of the Armed Forces. Whether its an issue of low salaries, substantial risk, or lily-livered “counter-recruiters” is immaterial; the fewer recruits we get the greater the strain on those already serving.
Let’s not let immigration absolutism necessitate stop-loss, recall from the IRR, or any of the other devices that are the dread of today’s soldiers.
Call me selfish, but I do not want to miss another birthday or anniversary because of ill-placed fears about the reliability of such troops when literally thousands have used the military as a springboard to citizenship already (some posthumously, as was the case of Marine Cpl. Binh Le, a close friend of my wife) and have served with competence and valor. There are concomitant risks in allowing American youths to serve; the military has had occasional problems with gang members, white supremacists and with good old fashioned numbskulls that would likely have been vetted were not the military inclined at present to take everyone they can get.
ME: I, too, don’t want the writer to miss another birthday or anniversary with his family because of stop-loss orders and the like. But it’s a question of ends and means — if we really do need more soldiers, reinstitute the draft. If that’s politically impossible (and I’m not sure that’s actually the case), then that should tell us something. A foreign legion is a cop-out.
OK, now I really have to get back to work.