Military eyes 16-year-olds as ranks and candidates dwindle
The best way to fix the U.S. armed forcesâ€™ recruiting challenges may involve dipping further into the nationâ€™s high schools.
As the Army, Navy and other services contend with a thriving economy and a directive to expand their ranks, there is a growing debate over whether the military should consider lowering the minimum enlistment age from 17 to 16. More than a dozen countries, including the United Kingdom, already have adopted the policy.
Critics say the idea is deeply flawed and presents a host of societal problems, but supporters argue that the Pentagon needs to think outside the box if it wants to continually overcome one of the toughest recruiting environments in decades....
Excellent point, Neil, about the threat being internal rather than external. Years ago, the military protected our freedoms and way of life. Today, the battlefield is the courtroom and entities like ADF, ACLJ, HSLDA, and others are fighting for our freedoms.
Is it not cost efficient to bring back a national draft ? The professional soldier is getting older. Recently a Green Beret Sargent was killed in action in Afghanistan. He was in his 40â€™s. Instead of lowering standards to include, draft to hone.
The critics are correct but there are a number of challenges for both sides of this debate. Those against should consider that 16 year olds are below the age of consent in many states, yet would be having relationships with adults that could lead to grooming for sex. There are many other ills within the military I would not want children, or adults, subjected to. And then there is the whole child soldier issue. However, the rise in marijuana use, medicated ADHD diagnoses, and other disqualifying things makes getting kids younger a prospect that might get some early enough before they would be disqualified.
We would be better off turning this role back exclusively to men. It's not a role for women or children.