Accurate, Focused Research on Law, Technology and Knowledge Discovery Since 2002

Looming National Security Crisis: Young Americans Unable to Serve in the Military

The Heritage Foundation Report – “The military depends on a constant flow of volunteers every year. According to 2017 Pentagon data, 71 percent of young Americans between 17 and 24 are ineligible to serve in the United States military. Put another way: Over 24 million of the 34 million people of that age group cannot join the armed forces—even if they wanted to. This is an alarming situation that threatens the country’s fundamental national security. If only 29 percent of the nation’s young adults are qualified to serve, and if this trend continues, it is inevitable that the U.S. military will suffer from a lack of manpower. A manpower shortage in the United States Armed Forces directly compromises national security.” Impediments referenced in the report are:

  • Education – “To join the armed forces, the military across all branches requires that an individual have a high school diploma or a General Equivalency Diploma (GED). This qualification ensures that recruits possess a minimum level of education, a basic understanding of written and cognitive skills, and enough “stick-to-itiveness” to complete an organized program. This basic standard eliminates far too many young Americans from being able to serve…”
  • Criminal History – “Another hindrance to young adults’ ability to join the military is criminal history. Though each branch’s criminal-background requirements vary slightly, the Armed Forces jointly adhere to a common standard of moral behavior as a means of evaluating a recruit’s ability to succeed in military service. Across the Services, emphasis is placed on conviction of a crime, not so much on the punishment given…”
  • Health Issues – “According to the former commander of the U.S. Army Recruiting Command,Major General Allen Batschelet, the biggest culprit keeping young adults from qualifying to serve in the United States military however is health concerns, mostly obesity…”

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.