Cameron's Citizen's Service is exactly the reverse of National Service

I am really confused about David Cameron's call for a new "Citizen's Service, or as he would have it described "A National Service for the 21st Century".

His idea is something akin to a voluntary community service project, with the emphasis on "voluntary". You have to ask, what ever sort of binge drinking hoodie is going to want to voluntarily join up for this scheme ?

Yes, I am sure there are 16 year olds who would love to do it. The problem is for Cameron, that these are the same responsible, caring, literate 16 year olds who are not part of the problem that society faces at the moment. Quite how Cameron's plan would solve any problem with youth crime and offending is beyond me.

In many ways, his voluntary scheme is something akin to the British Army after National Service was axed in so much as it is voluntary and the people who sign up to it do so of their own free will. So any parallels with National Service that David Cameron proposes are complete pie in the sky.


dizzy said...

It's a cultural long-term change thingy, that's why it's confusing.

dizzy said...

that is to say I think it's a more strategic idea to create a cultural change over time than a quick fix one. The quick fix would be reintroducing Reform schools :)

Charlie Marks said...

Welcome to the Witanagemot Club, Nich. The first of many Liberal Democrats? I hope so!

Linda Jack said...

I don't actually doubt Cameron's sincerity on this, tho agree with your analysis - the young people he most wants to engage probably wont, precisely because it is them being done to rather than them having a stake in the whole idea and shaping it themselves. I am totally frustrated that the obvious answer (though not so sexy or headline grabbing) is to invest in long term detached youth work, supported by proper funding to enable exciting and challenging projects to take place.

Scott Kohlhaas said...

This proposal looks like a Trojan Horse that will bring mandatory conscription!

Would you be willing to spread the word about www.draftresistance.org? It's a site dedicated to shattering the myths surrounding the selective slavery system and building mass civil disobedience to stop the draft before it starts!

Our banner on a website, printing and posting the anti-draft flyer or just telling friends would help.


Scott Kohlhaas

PS. When it comes to conscription, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!