Obama camp scrubs website to remove references to “mandatory” community service


P.M. Jaworski
Western Standard
November 8, 2008

Associate editor, Terrence Watson, posted a satirical letter from the Western Standard to American youth who could expect to be required to serve 50 to 100 hours per year in "volunteer" activities. That was the obvious implication of the statements found on Obama’s website, Change.gov.

As news of the community service army draft trickled out, Obama webmasters began to scrub references to "mandatory" and "require." Take a look at these before-and-after quotes taken from the America Serves portion of the website:

Before (notice the highlighted section, especially the word "require"):

The Obama Administration will call on Americans to serve in order to meet the nation’s challenges. President-Elect Obama will expand national service programs like AmeriCorps and Peace Corps and will create a new Classroom Corps to help teachers in underserved schools, as well as a new Health Corps, Clean Energy Corps, and Veterans Corps. Obama will call on citizens of all ages to serve America, by developing a plan to require 50 hours of community service in middle school and high school and 100 hours of community service in college every year. Obama will encourage retiring Americans to serve by improving programs available for individuals over age 55, while at the same time promoting youth programs such as Youth Build and Head Start.

After (notice that the "requirement" has been changed to "setting a goal," as well as the fact that now college students can expect to be remunerated for their "volunteering"):

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t

The Obama Administration will call on Americans to serve in order to meet the nation’s challenges. President-Elect Obama will expand national service programs like AmeriCorps and Peace Corps and will create a new Classroom Corps to help teachers in underserved schools, as well as a new Health Corps, Clean Energy Corps, and Veterans Corps. Obama will call on citizens of all ages to serve America, by setting a goal that all middle school and high school students do 50 hours of community service a year and by developing a plan so that all college students who conduct 100 hours of community service receive a universal and fully refundable tax credit ensuring that the first $4,000 of their college education is completely free. Obama will encourage retiring Americans to serve by improving programs available for individuals over age 55, while at the same time promoting youth programs such as Youth Build and Head Start.


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