chapter  12
15 Pages

Selective Conscientious Objection: Some Guidelines for Implementation

ByJ. Carl Ficarrotta

This chapter explores how a military might implement such a policy. Indeed, deciding that allowing for selective conscientious objection is the right thing to do is only a beginning. It Implements the policy will present a number of vexing problems, problems that will need to be addressed through moral, practical and political lenses. The chapter also explores the backdrop of two large assumptions: that the military in question is part of a larger political structure that already abjures using conscription to fill the ranks, or short of that, at least allows for deferral via general conscientious objection, and that the military belongs to a state that expects its soldiers to obey the laws of war and will punish those who are discovered to have committed war crimes. The government says at the same time that application is a legitimate choice for a service member to make, perhaps even a right. Failing to protect applicants against backlash has the institution speaking.