I'm a veteran of the Vietnam war. I tell young people do not join the military. It has become a mercenary force to do the bidding of the Washington political establishment. To truly serve the nation means to serve the people, not the unconstitutional government. If people don't join there can be no war.
Sometimes when I talk to a male family member I bribe them with 20 dollars (not worth too much these days). I say, "Here, take this. If it keeps you away from a recruiter's office for one day it's worth it." I offer to take them to a VA long term care facility to see what war has been done to the minds and bodies of those who have served. I offer to take them to my local VA outpatient clinic to see Iraq and Afghanistan veterans with no arms and legs. I make them think.
I show them a copy of the U.S. Constitution. I read to them the preamble, to wit: "We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."
The emphasis is "We the people, ourselves": that's us. Not the corporations who benefit from manufacturing weapons of war, not the flag wavers for foreign governments and not the global bankers whose existence is to keep you in debt.
We can do things in the moment even if they're little to impress upon the youth, our children, about what war is really about; what freedom really means, that we must be ever vigilant when the politicians rattle their vitriolic sabers towards nonexistent enemies to expand American hegemony for world conquest.
I tell them to not pick up the sword is patriotic; it is heroic. A brave person stands against tyranny when it wraps itself around moral corruption and jingoistic nationalism.
We are the land of the free and the home of the brave because we are rebellious in our cause for liberty. Let us not be afraid to speak out on behalf of freedom and our pursuit of individual happiness.