tabling at Rolling Meadows HS April 5, 2016

It's a very slow day at RMHS today. Very little interest. A pair of girls and a solo girl came by and got peace pins. Our friend J came be and was very appreciative of being published in the latest zine. He took 5 or 6 copies. Nobody else has shown the slightest interest. A substitute teacher with whom I've been friendly came by. Hadn't seen her since last school year. Turns out she broke her leg in the Fall and was out of commission while healing. She is now caring for an infant grandson three days a week so can only sub a maximum of 2 days each week.

Several students have come by and taken zines; one of them is a regular, a clean-cut student who reminds me of the Frank Burns character from the TV show "MASH". Several other boys were following him around. Students have been taking zines. One security guy took a look at it as well. Another very pleasant security guy is doing his job and being cordial with staff and students. He is wearing the most interesting shoes; the soles of which look like legos.

Our friend J tells me he is working on more articles. Let's hope.



tabling at Wheeling HS March 8, 2016

International Women's Day

We continued with our informal poll about women and Selective Service. So far, the vast majority of students (male and female) feel that women should be required to register.

I talked to two young people - one male, one female - that plan to enlist after graduation. The young woman is following a family tradition and intends to become a dog trainer. She has been assured of a position and feels she has enough connections that this will come to pass. She currently has five dogs of her own and has trained them all.

The young man is a different story. In his case, it seems he just doesn't know what else to do. He doesn't want to go to college; doesn't have any particular career goals; sees no other path. I encouraged him to wait at least a year after graduation before deciding. I got a bunch of his friends to talk to him about delaying this decision. He has a cousin who enlisted and came back "damaged" so he is well aware of the risk. But young people that age just don't think this will happen to them. It's hard to break through.


tabling at Elk Grove HS March 3, 2016

All in all the table was pretty quiet today.

I did have the opportunity to hand out:

  •         Some candy, buttons and patches
  •         a number of the d214 internships flyers
  •         peace essay rules ... hopefully some students will actually write an essay - I always request they also send their copy to our website indicating their first name and school
  •         Voting was again done regarding women and Selective Service and, as of now, it’s pretty well evenly divided
  •         Only one student anticipated possibly going into Chicago this weekend and I gave her the handout for the peace-themed film festival at the Cultural Center
  •         There was much ‘horsing around’ – especially by some of the boys – spring must be on the way!



tabling at Rolling Meadows HS March 1, 2016

Today at RMHS I met a delightful junior. He loves the peace buttons. I told him the artist had graduated from RMHS.  He came back later, ready to buy all the buttons for $1. I told him he could have another but we don't sell them. He is into peace and color, he says. I told him the button artist is a tatoo artist. That's what this young man wants to be, he told me. I think he ended up with 4 or 5 peace buttons with my approval.

Then another young man came by -- didn't get his name -- he's been here before. He's a marksman and shoots competitively. Said he had gone to an Olympic shooting range in Colorado Springs, wants to compete in the Olympics. I never pay attention to sports; didn't know the Olympics included marksmanship. Do they? (Both of my much older brothers studied marksmanship and gun safety with the NRA back in the 1950's). This young man is a member of the NRA.

A bunch of young women came by. All thought women should be required to register with the Selective Service. One young woman agreed with that but said we should not have the Selective Service. She left before I could get her to say more.


tabling at Prospect HS March 1, 2016

Since March is Women's History Month, we decided to focus on women and Selective Service (the draft). In December of last year the Secretary of Defense announced that all combat positions would be open to women. The question then became, should women have to register for Selective Service. We decided to put that question to the students.

I realized fairly early on that most students were completely oblivious. In Illinois, as in many other states, young men are automatically registerd for the Selective Service when they apply for a drivers' license. So most are blissfully unaware that it's taking place.

Still, I noted that most students felt that in the interests of gender equality women should have to register. Only one student voted "No" and he did so because he felt no one should have to register unless they wanted to; it should be their choice, in other words.

There is more information and resources on our website.




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