Nolo's Plain-English Law Dictionary

Conscientious Objector

A person who refuses to serve in the military due to religious or strong philosophical views against war or killing. Refusing to answer a draft call is a federal felony, but when a person's religious beliefs are long-standing and consistent (as with the Quakers) then the objection to service is excused. Conscientious objectors may be required to perform some nonviolent work like driving an ambulance. Those who do not agree with these objectors sometimes call them "draft dodgers."