As the U.S. military begins its second year of service in Iraq, potential new recruits are showing reluctance to join for fear of being sent abroad. This, coupled with the improving economy at home, has prevented the Army from meeting its recruitment goals for the past several quarters.
Several solutions to this problem have been proposed, including extending the required length of service, further outsourcing jobs to civilian contractors, changing age restrictions, allowing LGBT identified individuals to serve openly, re-instituting the draft, and lowering aptitude test score requirements. Each of these options has the potential to radically change the face of the military
This growing crisis also brings other questions to light. What is our duty as individuals to our country? The benefits of an all-volunteer military are many and well documented. Many have suggested however, that the benefit to our nation of the sense of shared commitment and sacrifice engendered by selective service may be just as great. Another issue that arises with this subject is the ethics of the military’s recruitment strategies. Anti-recruitment campaigns continue to draw strength as recruitment officers increase their access to high schoolers. Some also contend that the military discriminatorily preys on economically disadvantaged communities of color.
What are the consequences of not meeting the recruitment goals? Which of the suggested solutions will address this problem, without diminishing the overall quality of the armed services? Are the recruitment strategies predatory?
Join us for a Café Society discussion on this important topic.
This weeks articles:
Some Bodies That Matter
For more informaiton, please contact Kristin Millikan at 312.422.5580.