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May 2024
1min read

Jim Fallow, who starved himself until his weight fell below the underweight limit for the Army, recalls how he felt on failing his physical: “It was, initially, a generalized shame at having gotten away with my deception, but it came into sharper focus later in the day. Even as the last of the Cambridge contingent was … deliberately failing its color blindness tests, buses from the next board began to arrive. These bore the boys from Chelsea, thick, dark-haired young men, the white proles of Boston.

“Most of them were younger than us, since they had just left high school, and it had clearly never occurred to them that there might be a way around the draft. They walked through the examination lines like so many cattle off to slaughter.”

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