Government officials’ children deserve to fight in battle

October 8, 2008 — by Alex Sclavos

War between nations takes a toll on all civilians, but it most directly affects the families of soldiers who are fighting in the war. These soldiers are voluntarily—when there is no draft—risking their lives for their countries, every day without hesitation. With the current shortage of troops, it is important for the military to use every man or woman they have to fight, and that includes the children of politicians.

Children of government officials who are serving in the armed forces should not be exempt from the horrors of war because their parents hold an important office nor should they be offered easier posts or safer deployments. In the case of the country ever reverting back to a draft, it would be fair to say that these children should not be the only ones who do not have to participate, when the rest of the country is forced to. If these officials are prepared to send countless citizens into the war and make life-threatening decisions for them, they should be prepared to send their own family members who are serving into the exact same situations. Would President Bush be willing to send his daughters to Iraq? If the answer is no, then the war probably should not have been fought.

Unfortunately, though there are many people in government who are for the war, less than a handful of government officials are willing to send their own children into battle. Vice-residential candidates Sen. Joseph Biden and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin both have children who are serving for the Army. Presidential candidate John McCain has a son in the Marine Corps, who is subject to deployment to Iraq at any time. These children have decided on their own to show their patriotism for the United States, and with that should be allowed to go and do their part, rather than be held at desk jobs because of their prominent status.

Controversy that has recently been aroused concerning government officials’ children in Iraq is that they are a target and are putting the rest of their battalion in more danger than if they were not serving in battle at all. This is blown out of proportion by the press; if they did not constantly write about these high profile children serving in Iraq, the dangers would be greatly reduced. For example, when Prince Harry served in Afghanistan, everything was fine until the press got a hold of the news and then the fear kicked in, and his troop had to worry more about protecting him than fighting for the cause.

Believing that the children of prominent government officials mean more to the United States because of their parents is not a fair judgment. Some civilians believe that if a government official’s child were in the war, the leader would not be able to focus on helping the nation because they would constantly be worried about their son or daughter on the front lines. This is baloney because it runs contrary to our most basic belief: that everyone in the United States is created equal. Until all people serve equally, we won’t be able to truly say this country is based on equality.

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