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February 20, 1983

Benjamin Sasway, the first student to be convicted for failing to register after the Carter Administration reinstated the selective service system in 1980, spoke about draft resistance in the Villard Room. Sentenced to 2 ½ years in prison, Sasway was paroled after serving six months.

Learning of his indictment in 1982, Sasway told the press, “The Government has chosen to prosecute me to intimidate the 500,000 people who did not register for the draft. I urge these resisters to stand firm, without fear. I ask people appalled by hatred and violence, who believe in freedom and who oppose militarism, to stand by me in protest. We can’t forget that it is our Government and we have the power, if we act together, to change and improve it.”

New York Times

The Years