70% of U.S. youth are too fat, uneducated, and criminal to serve in military

childhood obesity rates of U.S., China, Japan, So. Korea & India

Michael Cook reports for MercatorNet, Nov. 9, 2015, that in a 2009 report, Ready, Willing, And Unable To Serve, more than 450 retired generals and admirals in a lobby group called Mission Readiness concluded that young Americans are “too fat to fight” and that “The best aircraft, ships and satellite-guided weaponry alone will not be enough to keep our country strong”.

According to the report:

Startling statistics released by the Pentagon show that 75 percent of young people ages 17 to 24 are currently unable to enlist in the United States military. Three of the most common barriers for potential recruits are failure to graduate high school, a criminal record, and physical fitness issues, including obesity.

That was in 2009. Alas, nothing has changed since.

Mission Readiness 2014 report, Retreat is Not an Option,  found that:

Obesity is one of the main reasons why more than 70 percent of young Americans are unable to serve in today’s military. This includes young adults in families with generations of military service, and others who have the critical skills our military needs but cannot join simply because of too many extra pounds.

There are 3 reasons for why 75% of young Americans are unfit to serve in the U.S. military:

  1. Inadequate education: About 25% of young Americans lack a high school diploma. Even those who have one, many are substandard at reading and mathematics, which explains why as many as 30% of potential recruits with a diploma fail the Armed Forces Qualification Test.
  2. Criminal records: About 10% of young U.S. adults are disqualified because they have had at least one prior conviction for a felony or serious misdemeanour. According to the Pew Center on the States, “One in 30 [American young] men between the ages of 20 and 34 is behind bars.”
  3. Obesity and other health problems: 27% of young Americans are too fat to join the military. Many never even try to join. But of those who do, 15,000 fail their entrance physicals every year because they are too fat. Another 32% of all young people have other disqualifying health problems –asthma, eyesight or hearing problems, mental health issues, or recent treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. In total, half of young U.S. adults cannot join because of health problems.

Study after study show that the best early education program is a stable home with a loving mother and father. But the Obama administration’s Pentagon, instead of realising that young Americans need the strength and security that comes from intact biological families, recommend the usual government solution — better early education programs, better school meals, and better physical education programs. What the Pentagon refuses to say for politically correct reasons, is that America’s national security is at risk because America’s families are dysfunctional.

This is emphasized by a 2014 report by Brad Wilcox and Robert I. Lerman for the American Enterprise Institute and the Institute for Family Studies, which concluded that:

“what is largely missing from the public conversation about economics in America is an honest discussion of the family factor. The retreat from marriage … plays a key role in the changing economic fortunes of American family life. Growing up with both parents (in an intact family) is strongly associated with more education, work, and income among today’s young men and women.”

And they make better soldiers, too.

Retired Rear Admiral James Barnett said, “Our national security in the year 2030 is absolutely dependent upon what is going on in pre-kindergarten today.” In healthy families, kids learn to respect authority, value education and take responsibility for their health. They learn how to cooperate and to work as a team. They build a stronger moral sense. And all this costs the taxpayer nothing, unlike the government-funded programs recommended by the retired generals and admirals.

But after two generations of me-centred marriages and unstable families, America’s human capital increasingly is degraded. The introduction of same-sex marriage would only accelerate the process. As The Economist says about the challenges ahead: “The result is that America may be unable, within reasonable cost limits and without reinstituting the draft, to raise the much bigger army it might need for such wars.

At the moment, the Pentagon relies upon a weak job market to lure young men and women into the services. But it worries and should worry about what will happen when the economy eventually picks up.

Lastly, America’s obese young are not just bad for the military, they constitute a looming national health crisis.

Time magazine reports that researchers at a recent American Heart Association annual meeting in Florida warned that excess weight in children can lead to potentially harmful changes in the hearts of kids as young as 8.

Linyuan Jing, a post doctoral fellow from the Geisinger Health System, and her colleagues studied 20 obese children—i.e., those with a body mass index over 35, whereas a healthy range is 18.5 to 25—and 20 normal-weight children. All had MRIs of their hearts.

The researchers found that obese children:

  1. have 12% thicker heart muscle overall compared to the normal-weight children. Thicker heart muscle means the heart is working harder to pump blood. Previous studies have linked thickened heart muscle in adults to premature death from heart-related causes.
  2. show 27% thicker left ventricles, the chamber of the heart responsible for pumping blood to the body.
  3. show signs of having less cardiac muscle contractility, which is a possible early sign of decreased heart function.

Jing said, “It’s surprising to see evidence of heart disease among eight year olds. Because that implies that children younger than eight could have signs of heart disease as well.”


4 responses to “70% of U.S. youth are too fat, uneducated, and criminal to serve in military

  1. On America’s youth, I would like to call, “BULLFEATHERS!”, because they are healthy enough to hang out all hours, healthy enough to continue a seditary life but graze like bovine, healthy enough to protest, healthy enough to vote (like, for the jerk in the White House), and healthy enough to stand in a welfare line for “free stuff”. When the US military went volunteer, it was believed the quality of soldier would be better than what the Draft brought, instead it only fostered a generation of sllackers. In the Marine Corps, we had a cure for that, called “MOTIVATION” training. Why. Many reasons, starting with being subjected to Stress from the beginning, will save a Marine’s life under combat stress, and, I can say, combat, is, in fact, stressful, like you cannot imagine. Bring back the Draft but, all branches of the military need to get back to the Old School training of before the voluunteer military because some people are not smart enough to understand what is going on or how they might benefit from hard training. Southeast Asia was brutal, but the Drill Instructors had made training so hard, I would rather face NVA Regulars (trained professional soldiers), than face another go-around of boot camp. Draft people to give participation (hey, America also has Jury Duty, few like doing it), and then, if people slack off, “leave them back”, to repeat basic training but, all drill instructors of the branches should be, USMC Certified. Hard training. Fat boys, slim down. Skinny boys, muscle up. Find the weakest link in the chain and strengthen it. We had some uneducated, but the platoon managed to help them smarten up, not to be mean, but to educate them enough to survive combat. Under Obama, the military is demoralized. That must change. An enemy in the Oval Office is no friend of any GI. If there are no wars, the military is more like a job, rather than what many believe the military is. Step one, don’t take no for an answer, get them into basic training. It might also correct lives and avoid prison in years to come, or at least reduce the odds of crime. Strong, they will be able when discharged, to perform shovel ready jobs, real jobs. If too sick, how can they want jobs? They do not. They seek welfare and burden society. The military branches will teach Good Citizenship and self-discipline. Criminals? We had ex-convicts in WW2. They all wanted to fight and were on frontlines. From accounts that I read, they were good soldiers and only a few were problems. In fact, today, prisons have boot camp, to help inmates and reduce sentence time. Get people into the military by bringing back the Draft.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Agreed. I believe Selective Service should be reinstated for fit, healthy and qualified 18-35 year old males.

      At the height of the Iraq War (2003-2009), the “all volunteer” military showed it’s cracks when the services were bending over backwards and begging to get people to join. Granting waiver after waiver. Just speak to anyone who was on recruiting duty then.

      The U.S. Army was taking the obese, people with serious felonies, 41 year old women with children, you name it, and standards were decreased.
      The U.S. Marine Corps lowered their standards too, and prolifically recruited a man with autism (yes, knowingly, even though it’s supposed to be an automatic DQ) who was later charged with possession of child pornography.

      A good draftee beats a low quality volunteer who has multiple waivers and only joined with the promise of benefits, bonuses and extra college money.

      An all volunteer military only works when the numbers are small and the military can be highly selective, however that does NOT work in wartime when numbers are needed.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: 70% of U.S. youth are too fat, uneducated, and criminal to serve in military | Rifleman III Journal

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