Go to home page

Civilian Conservation Corps Revival Proposed, but for the Future of Youth, or for Make-Work?

June 28, 2020 (EIRNS)—Democrats have “CCC” (Civilian Conservation Corps, created by President Franklin Roosevelt) legislation in the House and Senate, both by expanding the Americorps and by creating a new CCC. What are the purposes? As given in a Politico article June 25, Sen. Ron Wyden (OR) thinks a CCC should focus on forestry practices to prevent wildfires. Sen. Cory Booker (NJ) has a proposal focused on “farm conservation practices and wetlands restoration,” which could pit the CCC youth against ranchers and farmers. Another bill, the Great American Outdoors Act, gives $900 million annual appropriations to the Land and Water Conservation Fund for “the maintenance backlog on the nation’s public lands.” This sounds like picking up trash. Others named as supporting the general idea are Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Joe Manchin.

Or, a “CCC” could look to the real future scientific and/or productive activity of the young people involved. The LaRouche Political Action Committee, in its proposal “Reopen the U.S. Economy: The World Needs 1.5 Billion New, Productive Jobs,” called for a “Space CCC” in which NASA centers, space companies and high-technology machine-tool firms, perhaps working with union apprentice programs, can train youth for space exploration and science careers.

The former Surgeon General of the United States (1993-94) Dr. Joycelyn Elders, speaking at the Schiller Institute’s international conference “Will Humanity Prosper, or Perish?” June 27, proposed a kind of medical youth corps to enlist young Americans in tackling the raging COVID-19 pandemic and the lack of public health infrastructure in the developing sector and some “advanced” nations as well. This would involve training in medical care and public health principles and practices, and could really target the need for extensive new public health infrastructure and staffing in Africa, for example. Perhaps a “medical Peace Corps” would apply, since the young people would definitely be training to go to work internationally.

Dr. Elders quoted at length from a memo on this prospect by Schiller Institute President Helga Zepp-LaRouche, and added ideas from her own extensive experience in public health. She pointed out that “the Historically Black Colleges and Universities could be used as points of coordination” for this training, as could churches and other religious institutions. She also referenced the Sanitary Commissions created by young nurses and the Union government during the Civil War as an example, emphasizing, “We are in a condition similar to that of a world war. This is a time for creative non-violent action.”

“Give young people a chance to save the lives of their peers in African and other nations,” she exhorted.

Back to top    Go to home page clear