Over Three-Fourths Of Young Americans Unfit For Military Service

A recent report by the Department of Defense (DOD) has found that an astounding 77% of Americans aged between 17 and 24 are unfit for military service, up 6% from 2017. Obesity rates were identified as the key reason for the decline in eligibility, with 11% of young people disqualified from serving in the military due to being overweight.

The report cites a study that shows that people who receive food assistance, mainly through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), are at greater risk of obesity due to the consumption of unhealthy food.

The report’s conclusions highlight the need for policymakers, including state and local school boards, to prioritize healthy eating, access to nutritious foods, and physical activity for children from an early age.

Obesity is a growing concern affecting not only our nation’s health but also America’s national security. Retired admirals and generals from “Mission: Readiness” recognize that the military alone cannot solve the underlying causes of obesity. Policymakers must take action to promote healthy lifestyles, particularly for young people, to reduce the disqualification rates for military service.

While obesity rates contribute to ineligibility for military service, other obstacles, including left-wing social experiments, also affect recruitment. In 2021, the Army’s recruitment campaign, “The Calling,” was widely criticized as “woke” propaganda. As a result, it faced significant pushback from conservative lawmakers and commentators.

The perception of many mainstream Americans is that the military is engaging in left-wing social experiments that only serve to deter potential quality military recruits.

The eligibility rates for military service have decreased significantly, with less than a quarter of Americans aged 17-24 meeting the necessary qualifications to enlist. In addition, the percentage of young people disqualified for multiple reasons has also increased to 44%.

The figures from the DOD indicate that physical fitness, including obesity, criminal history, and drug-related issues, are the key concerns preventing young Americans from serving their country.

Mission: Readiness member U.S.A.F. Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Norm Seip said of the disastrous eligibility report: “These new ineligibility figures are a painful reminder of the urgency around making sure that our young people have the tools they need to grow up healthy and prepared for whatever career path they choose, including military service if they so desire.”