Anonymous asked in Politics & GovernmentElections · 1 decade ago

My grandfather told me that many current candidates got out of military service by joining the Natl Guard?

We were discussing the Iraq war and the candidates view on it. Now I have the "antiwar" set of grandparents (maternal side) that were involved in peace demonstrations during the Vietnam War and my grandpa said that many candidates on the Republican side such as Guilani, Romney, used the national guard to avoid being drafted in the Vietnam War. He called them hypocrites and said I should vote for Hillary Clinton and as a Democrat. I'm a new voter of 18 and may vote for the Republican candidate but could be dissuaded. That particular grandfather burned his "draft notice" (I don't know how he stayed out of trouble after that lol lol). My other grandfather was drafted because of academic failure in college and wound up serving in combat in Vietnam. Later,I called my other grandfather on my cell phone and asked him for his opinion on that. He surprised me by confirming that that is true and said our current president did that too. Should these Republicans be asked why they did that


Thanks to all of you who have answered my question so far. I appreciate all the comments. Also, to the people that served in the armed forces who answered or had relatives who served, I really and personally appreciate what you have done to make my life better and allow me to live in a democratic country where an 18 year old can express her opinion and vote.

Oh many of you might be interested in a certain "rule" that is observed without exemption in my parents home. When my grandparents are together for let's say a family gathering, my parents have an ironclad rule "NO POLITICS ALLOWED DISCUSSED". The reason for this is because of my two sets of grandparents who still have "differences" from that era, and have the potential for heated arguments when politics is discussed. In my case, I love them all.

9 Answers

  • Pop D
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    I am also a Viet Nam veteran and I concur with what your grandfathers told you. We called it "legal draft doging" back then. As you can see these people were mostly the conservative Republican types who said they support war but were too chicken to go and fight. George W. Bush the number one chicken. These are what the right-wing conservative Republicans support today. They are all for fighting the war as long as someone else is spilling their blood. Look at George W. Bush and his family, along with Cheney and the great conservative talk show host such as Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and the like. They all talk tough but in reality are nothing but yellow-bellied, chicken-sh*t cowards. Typical republicans, typical conservatives. You must remember the situation back then. The National Guard was not going to see combat during the Viet Nam war. It was totally different then what is happening today. In fact, one guard unit sued the federal government for being called up during the war back then, saying that wasn't there job. The guys who burned their draft cards were a lot braver than the chicken-hawks who joined the Guard. At least they did what they believed in. Not like they typical conservative Republican that is all talk and tough on security as long as someone else is doing the fighting.

    Reading some of these answers especially from "oma_30701" and "Dave V" is maddening. No, National Guardsman did not go into combat during the Viet Nam war. Oma may have lived back then but she doesn't know what she it talking about. Dave V., yes the Guard is military service but it was used back in the 60's to stay out of combat, thus called "legal draft-doging" by the guys who were doing the fighting in Viet Nam. Don't compare todays Guard with what it was back in the 1960"s.

  • John H
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    I was a victim of the draft back during the days of the Vietnam war. I certainly wasn't happy about it. The notion of joining the National Guard or the reserves was a popular one although not an ironclad guarantee of avoiding combat. I tried to join the National Guard myslef, but was caught in the Catch 22 situation where the waiting list was 2 to 3 years and the draft board got to me first. That's the way it was for us folks who were too poor to pay the bribes needed to advance up the list.

    The burning of draft cards was largely symbolic. Although every male over 18 was required by law to carry his at all times, I don't recall ever hearing about someone being arrested for not having one. When I entered the army, the officer swearing my group in, just told us to drop our draft cards in the trash can. That's all there was to it.

    Source(s): Veteran 82d Airborne Division 1970 to 1973
  • 1 decade ago

    I can't tell you about all the candidates, but joining the National Guard to avoid being drafted was common among the social class that many of our candidate belonged to.

    President G W Bush did serve in the National Guard as an alternative to being drafted. So did former Vice President Quayle.

    One nice thing about Senators Obama and Clinton is that neither of them were subject to the draft in Vietnam so it would be a non-issue. Obama because he was too young and Clinton because she is female.

  • 1 decade ago

    Joining the National Guard is not a guarantee that you will not go to combat. Joining the Guard "IS" military service, not getting out of it. Guardsmen have many times in the past been activated and placed on the front lines in war, this is not a new thing. Joining the regular army does not mean you will see combat either. During Vietnam thousands of soldiers were stationed in Germany, Korea and other places. Using the "guard" excuse is just another way of bashing a political candidate you don't particularly like.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    Sweetie I lived through the Viet Nam era and yes a lot of the current candidates did go in the National Guard and in case your hippie grandpa hasn't noticed a lot of National Guard Units are currently in Iraq just as they were in Viet Nam, joining any military branch won't get you out of going to war unless you are very lucky, and how about dear old Bill Clinton that signed up and then went to Oxford in England as a way out.... You study up on each candidate and than vote for the one you feel will do the best job for the country, not just who your grandparents tell you to vote for....And for those that think I chicken ---- because of what I have said above my hubby and older brother both served in Nam along with a brother in law, and now our son, daughter and son in law are serving during this one and the one Bush Sr. started my family has served actively in every conflict/war we have been in since the Revolution back in 1776.

  • Matt M
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Whoever said that Nat Guard units didn't serve in Vietnam is wrong. My friend's father was in the Guard during Vietnam for 4 years. His unit ended up being called to Vietnam after he left and people who he knew fought and died. Plus, while he was in the Guard there were other Guard units who had aleady been deployed to Vietnam. The Guard was no way to get out of service and if fact would have probably given you a better chance of serving than just continuing with your life.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The Mormons believe we all lived in Heaven with Heavenly Father, several Heavenly Mothers, and 20 Billion Heavenly Siblings. Then there was a war. The good guys won and were born White. The bad guys lost and became demons. Those who were neutral or did not fight bravely were born with non-white skin. The bravest of the brave were born to Mormon families.

    We all know that Romney must have been a "Valliant Warrior" in the "War in Heaven" during the "Pre-Existence". How else could he have been born "White and Delightsome" to an LDS family here on Earth? Heck, he was probably one of the Commanding Generals . Now , America needs a President with valuable military experience like that to get us through our war in Iraq. Could you please ask "The One and Only True Prophet", Gordon Hinkley, to please release those valuable records to the public? We need to know what battles he fought in. How many medals he won. How many of the "Less Valliant Soldiers" he recommended being born with black skin when they got their chance to be born on Earth. Was Al Sharpton one of THEM ? How about Jesse Jackson? Mormons, this is your chance to show the world the light of the everlasting gospel. Dont miss out. We have General Romney running for president of the USA and we need you badly right now!

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago


    Many individuals of all political stripes enlisted in the Guard. Some did it to avoid combat, others did it for very noble reasons. But, given that Guardsmen can be called into active service, I'd say they were a lot braver than those that burned their draft cards.

  • 1 decade ago

    Joining The Guard was no guaranty of avoiding Vietnam, but that is what many had in mind I suppose. I can't agree with thinking anyone who runs for President is a coward, however. About 10% of our Presidents have been killed while in office -- I doubt those are better survival odds than going to Vietnam would have offered someone.

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.