There have been conscientious objectors in all American wars, and World War II was no different. While many, like the Quakers and the Amish, had a long history of refusing to fight, this refusal proved more troublesome when the majority saw World War II as "the good war." Many conscientious objectors, or C.O.'s, attempted to show support for the cause by volunteering for difficult jobs to disprove disloyalty. Many worked in mental hospitals, enlisted in medical experiment programs, and became fire fighters. Twenty-five thousand joined the armed services as non-combatants, including actor Lew Ayres who worked with a medical unit. Others worked in Civilian Public Service, a program operated by churches. Seven thousand C.O.'s were jailed for as long as four years for refusing alternative service or objecting to the draft. Following the war, C.O.'s replaced soldiers in Europe, became involved in the civil rights movement, and later formed protests against the Vietnam war. The Good War and Those Who Refused to Fight It includes interviews with a number of conscientious objectors.
Disc #1 -- Good War and Those Who Refused to Fight It 1. Intro and Background of Conscientious Objectors [12:54] 2. The Union 8 [4:58] 3. Pearl Harbor and the U.S. at War [3:02] 4. Civilian Public Service Camp [5:32] 5. COs Volunteered for Danger [3:47] 6. Mental Hospital Service [3:48] 7. To Prison [6:03] 8. Lew Ayres and Noncombatant Service [5:35] 9. After the War, the Legacy of Non-Violence [9:22]
Disc #1 -- Good War and Those Who Refused to Fight It Play Movie Chapters Web & ROM Resources Special Features Daniel Ellsberg - The Pentagon Papers James Farmer - Civil Rights Leader Ambassador Max Kampelman - WWII C.O., Reagan-Era Arms Negotiator Studs Terkel - Pulitzer Prize-Winning Author, The Good War William Stafford - Pacifism and Poetry The Story of America's Conscientious Objectors 1943 Peace Church Film on WWII C.O. Camps World War II Poster Gallery CO Handbook Draft Counseling 101 Iraq War Military COs CO Workshop