What we need to learn is that whenever we create speciality groups, we are creating the dangerous possibility that our right hand will not know what our left is doing. I am not arguing that we should do without speciality groups entirely; that would be to throw out the baby with the bath water. But we must realize the potential danger, and structure our speciality groups in such a way as to minimize it. We are not yet doing so. For instance — because it does not hurt us as a whole — our society developed and currently maintains a policy of an all-volunteer military. Our response to the antiwar sentiment engenered by Vietnam has been to opt for an even more thoroughly specialized military, overlooking the danger involved. Abandoning the concept of the citizen soldier in favour of the mercenary, we have placed ourselves in grave jeopardy. Twenty years from now, when Vietnam has been largely forgotten, how easy it will be, with volunteers, to once again become involved in little foreign adventures. Such adventures will keep our military on its toes, provide it with real-life war games to test its prowess, and need not hurt or involve the average American citizen at all until it is too late.
A draft — involuntary service — is the only thing that can keep our military sane. Without it the military will inevitably become not only specialized in its funciton but increasingly specialized in its psychology. No fresh air will be let in. It will become inbred and reinforce its own values, and then, when it is once again let loose, it will run amok as it did in Vietnam. A draft is a painful thing. But so are insurance premiums; and involuntary service is the only way we have of ensuring the sanity of our military ‘left hand.’ The point is that if we must have a military at all, it should hurt. As a people we should not toy with the means of mass destruction without being willing to personally bear the responsibility of wielding them. If we must kill, then let us not select and train hired killers to do the dirty job for us and then forget that there’s any blood involved. If we must kill, then let us honestly suffer the agony involved ourselves. Otherwise we will insulate ourselves from our own deeds, and as a whole people we will become like the individuals described in previous sections: evil. For evil arises in the refusal to acknowledge our own sins.
— M. Scott Peck, writing in 1983 in People of the Lie: The Hope for Healing Human Evil