The story that I connected to the most was On the Rainy River. I feel like i can actually see myself his situation because of how common it was. People all over had to face the same issue that Tim did and I think the majority including me would react the same way.
I can connect to Tim because i have the same initial thoughts when it comes to a situation like this. He thinks about his family first and his pride as an American. I have great respect for him in his decision on eventually joining the war. He is a very well rounded individual and very intellectual when it comes to making a sacrifice. It is so easy to run to Canada and escape the horrors of the Vietnam war. The average American has no care or connection to what people in Vietnam are doing. That is why 50-70% of people drafted fled the country. I could see myself going to Canada with my family because this war is not more important than being with them. I don't see it as being a traitor, I see the government as traitors for forcing people away from their lives to die for a cause that means nothing to them. Choosing people off of a draft just adds fuel to the fire. There has to be a much better way to find soldiers than randomly selecting people from their birth dates. Some people are very influential in society and it would be a detriment to put them in the war. Muhammad Ali is a great example of this. He is a hero to people all around the country. To put an icon like that in jail over a war that doesn't matter to the American people is a disgrace.
Tim uses characterization on his life and his surroundings when he was trying to decide on entering the war. He worked with pigs and would go home everyday smelling like them. Everyday he would contemplate fleeing the country while driving around in his car. He describes himself as almost an average American just doing his part in life that asks nothing from anyone. It is a great point because it relates to most of the people that were drafted. It is the most popular argument against the war. He is living in his own peace but all of the sudden he has this huge dilemma on his hands. That is not something that should be put on people.
"And right then i submitted. I would go to the war - I would kill and maybe die - because i was embarrassed not to." This quote from Tim was very revealing to how hard this decision was. Your choice was to go fight for something that is irrelevant and possibly die, or live life being viewed as a coward or a traitor by society for the rest of your life. This makes me think more about the attitudes of the soldiers fighting the Vietcong. Nobody wanted to be there. I am sure there were lots of issues within our own army to deal with at the same time. Having good morale in battle is a huge part of winning and the Americans didn't have that.