(CNN) -- New York Democratic Rep. Charles Rangel has proposed a new military draft to bolster U.S. troop levels. We asked CNN.com readers if they believe Congress should bring back the draft or keep the military an all-volunteer force. Here is a selection of your replies, some of which have been edited for length and clarity.
Diane Nyquist from Cal City, California
It's about time that this country woke up and put our kids to work. Get them off the street corners. Maybe they will learn a little caring for this country that gives them so much. It worked before...let's get it working again.
Paul Carter from Portland, Oregon
No, no, no! A thousand times no! There is absolutely no good reason to reinstate the draft. The Bush administration has our armed forces deployed all over the world, fighting useless, counterproductive wars. Bring those soldiers home, and there won't be any need for additional soldiers!
Gale Kruger from Shawano, Wisconsin
Yes, if it is needed. I was drafted in 1970 during the Viet Nam War and I am proud to be a veteran. I would gladly go again if they would let me. Perhaps we should see how many vets would be willing to go back into the service and use people that have experience and save our youth if we can. But we need a well-educated, qualified standing Army and if the draft is needed that is fine with me.
Brooke Bernal from Boston, Massachusetts
Absolutely not!!! We wouldn't be in this predicament if our president had clearly thought out why we were going to war. His ill decision has cost the U.S. and the Middle East many lives. I do not blame people for not wanting to join the military. People should have the choice. No one should be forced to join. We live in a country based on freedom; do not take away our right to decide if we want to fight or not!
Janice Eckel from Tehachapi, California
While I am not opposed to all young people serving some form of government service, I will fight a reinstated draft to death because the politicians refuse to make it without loopholes for the privileged. When congressmen's and presidents' sons and daughters are equally drafted, no deferments, no political strings to pull, I will support a national draft. Not before.
Luis Smithson from Trenton, New Jersey
On re-instating the draft: It would be the fastest way to end our war in Iraq. People would be out in the streets demonstrating all over the country.
Larry Wiech from Columbus, Ohio
I think that bringing back the draft is a terrible idea. As a current member of the armed forces, I am proud to be part of a highly cohesive, highly functional team. To bring in people who do not want to be there would destroy morale and reduce effectiveness and reduce commanders to babysitters. Instead of the draft, require the elected officials to truly study all options and ensure the creation of a complete battle plan (including exit strategies) prior to deploying personnel. Also, allow the military to re-grow its ranks to reduce the amount of support on reserves. To depend so deeply on reservists during a regional conflict is worrisome at best.
LeRoy Robinett, Sr. from Elkhart, Indiana
I definitely believe that the draft should be brought back. If nothing else it would teach the younger generation responsibility. I have always stated that the Eisenhower type of draft should never have been stopped.
Douglas Holloway from Spotsylvania, Virginia
I fully support the reinstatement of the draft. It would provide a means to ensure an equal representation in our military forces, give military training and background to our future leaders and have a direct impact upon our politicians who might have their loved ones committed to a war they support in the future.
Paul Bickel from Virginia Beach, Virginia
Mr. Rangel should get his head out of the sand and come back to reality. Having gone through the draft process in the 1960's, I can assure you no one wants their children to be subject to a military draft. Next thing he's going to come up with is reinstating prohibition!
David Etzel from Enterprise, Alabama
Yes, I think the Draft should be reinstated ASAP. It is not right that an undersized army of our young men and women should serve in combat in Iraq two or three times during one or two enlistments increasing their chances of being killed or losing limbs. I think it is past time to sit down and present a practical plan of action to either win, train the Iraq Forces to take over or just get out at all cost. To win, we MUST double our numbers in Iraq.
Matthew Geary from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
I favor the establishment of national service, which could include a military draft but which would also include non-military service options. That being said, I believe the only way that Rangel's proposed draft would succeed is if everyone of a certain age were subject to it and chosen completely at random. There could be no deferments or exemptions of any type, as these would be undoubtedly be abused by those with the savvy, connections and resources to do so. Realistically, how likely is that to happen? Better to have no draft at all than to have one that would only include those without the means to avoid it.
Karen Lynch from Tulsa, Oklahoma
Bring back the draft? Is this guy daffy? For years, young men found numerous ways to get out of the draft, including buying their way out, so only the poor went to war. Why would we choose to go back and do such a thing to our children or grandchildren!
Dena Scott from Livingston, Texas
NO! NO! NO! NO! As a mother and a teacher, I loudly disagree with Representative Rangel concerning bringing back the draft. I strongly feel it would not deter the use of combat with our young men and women. It would only give more American bodies for this president and his leaders/followers/planners to disburse across the world fighting whatever scenario they want to concoct.
Randy Logsdon from Keymar, Maryland
Right on! Mandatory 2 years service for all men and women who are citizens of this great nation! No excuses, no exemptions, no deferments. Rich and poor serving side by side. Wow, what a concept.
John Barrett from Branford, Connecticut
Rep. Rangel needs to remember the quality of the military that served in Vietnam. Draft unwilling kids, teach them to kill and throw them into a situation like Vietnam or Iraq, that is, a situation best described in military fashion as a "Cluster ____." (expletive deleted)
Karen Pacchione from Newnan, Georgia
When the president's daughters and the children of all congressmen and congresswomen are the first ones sent to Iraq, then and only then would I agree with a draft. Unfortunately, as the current situation proves, politicians and presidents will continue to get us into unwarranted wars and confrontations. I don't want my children getting killed or maimed because of politics and bad decisions.
Chris Nichols from Ward, Arizona
I am a recently discharged veteran of over 13 years' service. To bring back the draft would destroy what little bit of order remains in the military. Persons who do not wish to serve should not be made to. What the military needs is better support from the government. The military needs someone to stand up and take charge. The draft will not ensure that upper class citizens serve. It didn't work in Vietnam and it will not work now. If someone wants to help the military, give them clear direction in the war and stop making them fight with rules that only we are following.
What do you think about the draft? Send us your thoughts.