Susanne M. Schafer of Associated Press offers a useful perspective on how Army recruits are changing and how the Army is changing to accommodate lower levels of knowledge about what used to be “basic.”
As gun ownership drops among young Americans and the Army trains a generation more accustomed to blasting out emojis on cellphones than taking aim at targets, drill sergeants are confronting a new challenge: More than half of raw recruits have never held, let alone fired, a weapon.
Phi Beta Iota: Apart from only 1% of youth being eligible for the Army because the other 99% suffer from a broad range of disqualifying conditions including obesity, now we are realizing that new Army recruits simply don’t know what past generations knew. A fresh look is needed at the relationship between the Army, education, and society. There may be roles for the Boy Scouts of America and the National Rifle Association — we have lost our foundation for a strong Army.