Friday, May 04, 2018

Who Stands Guard?

A look at the demographics of the American military.

I'd like to point out two things. One, contrary to the liberal myth that the military takes the poor and uneducated for cannon fodder, the middle class is over-represented while the poor and wealthy are underrepresented.

There is nothing wrong with providing opportunities for the poor, of course. But recruits have to be capable of learning to be of use to the military.

And two, geographically the military does not represent America.

Not that I'm blaming the military. It recruits where people are willing to join.

But the military needs to break out of the areas that have military bases. That was the point of my article, "Course Could Be a Lifesaver for Recruiting," Army Magazine, July 2017 (Arlington, Va.: The Association of the United States Army), pp. 14-15.

I called for an Army outreach to cities and regions that don't supply their "share" of recruits by sponsoring courses on a version of the combat lifesaver course.

My thought is that a course that also adds the history and opportunities of the Army would introduce civilians to the Army and would increase the chance that the participants or their family or friends would enlist.

And such a course would have benefits in homeland defense by creating civilians able to treat casualties in their own neighborhoods, whether from terrorism, crime, or natural disaster.

Both outcomes help guard America. It's win-win. To avoid complicating the issue, I figured it would be an Army program. But it could be jointly funded by the Department of Homeland Security, really. Or funded by money that otherwise would go to Homeland Security.