Despite growing tensions worldwide and an obvious need for a stronger U.S. military to defend against our foes, foreign and domestic, recruiters are having an impossible time trying to replace the numbers and the talent in our armed forces. And it's not for the mostly-superficial reasons popular media wants us to believe. The causes have the same roots as the alarming cultural shifts threatening our future as a nation. Despite massive bonuses and attempts at all sorts of inclusion—from LGBTQ-friendly social media posts to Air Force drag shows to lowered standards for education and fitness—the branches of the U.S. military are watching their numbers dwindle and their recruitment quotas regularly unmet. As I hope you know, the Warrior Poet Society is pro-soldier. We are veteran-owned and operated, and we see a strong military as integral to a free society. Unfortunately, our defenses seem to be shrinking and future recruitment prospects are being lost to a whole slew of distractions—and other things. Mainstream culture is attempting solutions, but they've misdiagnosed the problem.
"Maybe it's college." "Maybe it's COVID." "Maybe it's Americans' poor perception of our military"—which actually might be getting closer to the truth.
Reason #1: Poor Perception of Armed Services.
This is one propagated by mainstream media for why Americans aren't signing up, but it's also a reason caused, in part, by mainstream media. There's a narrative pushed by Academia through the mainstream media and other political channels that America is evil. Who wants to fight, defend, and be willing to lay down their lives for a country that's evil?
The answer is, probably not too many people. How can you, on the one hand, suggest that America is evil and then on the other hand that the now-dead ideals of their country are worth their blood, sweat, and years of service? There's a cost for America bashing, and this is part of that cost. When patriotism dies, you can't expect to have a full thriving able-bodied military. And anyone joining up simply to collect the signing bonus and paycheck—those are called mercenaries.
Reason #2: The Tyranny of Vax Enforcement.
So it's true. COVID-19 plays a huge role in the military's shrinking numbers, but not for the reasons touted by CNN. It's not because people are afraid of meeting face to face with recruiters. Rather, it's because both active and prospective service members continue to object to COVID-19 vaccinations.
Some current military members are being forced to decide between continuing their career or continuing to refuse the vaccinations. And of course potential recruits are being denied enlistment because of vaccination requirements.
Several times very recently I've heard from people who want to join and even pursue special operations opportunities, but the vaccination question becomes a brick wall every time. Right now, we have instructors in this company, former vets, on staff who ran to our employment from the military because they wouldn't get vaccinated.
This has even happened to a lot of our special operations community. Some of them have just completely hit the deck and got chaptered out of the military or faced incredible pressure and difficulty because they refused to be vaccinated. I'm not really taking a stand either way. I'm just pointing to this reality.
Reason #3: The Woke Agenda.
I realize there are exceptions to this, but most soldiers join the military to play war games, not woke games. The military is a meritocracy that the woke left wants to turn into yet another opportunity to display the LGBTQ+ banner.
Why? Do they think rainbows win wars? They just don't. And they don't inspire young men and women to join, train, fight, and act heroically when it really matters. It's as simple as it sounds. Do good military stuff, get military rewards. Play the woke games and grow weak and uninspiring to the soldiers who would have fought for the freedoms, ironically, that the left enjoys when they are able to trash and bash their country and toy with the tyranny of the wokist worldview.
It's a worldview that insists that everything, including the military, be recreated in their image. Unfortunately, the bullets, bombs, and evil intentions of our enemies can't be deflected by the woke force fields of their alternate realities.
I got in a little fight on social media with the National Guard recently, finally reminding them "None of our military giants focused on the private sexual preferences of their soldiers. Celebrating soldiers for soldiering is nice. Do that. And you do that by giving medals when they do good military stuff. The system already has ways of celebrating and recognizing.
Celebrating a soldier because they do gay stuff is offensive and wildly off course for our nation's military. Return to your former glory, please. The point is this. Heterosexual or homosexual - are you ready to protect against enemies foreign and domestic? That's what we need you to do. We are fighting real enemies, not for the right to have our sexualities celebrated and championed and positioned as reasons for military accolades.
At best, it's a distraction against what military people really should be doing. At worst, it's undermining the very fabric of our military. You're playing woke games when you should be focused on war games.
Reason #4: There Just Aren't Enough Qualified People.
There's a pretty painful reality at play right now in America that only seems to be growing. Army Chief of Staff recently reported that only 23 percent of fighting-age Americans (17-24) are qualified to enlist, and the other 77 percent are either too obese, too addicted to substances, or have a criminal record.
Instant gratification and victimhood culture are making Americans question whether anything is worth fighting for beyond our next hit of dopamine. A Department of Defense survey found recently that 57 percent of all young respondents believe that joining the military would leave them physically, psychologically and emotionally broken after serving.
But guess what. Life hurts, both inside and outside the military. There's no screen-based reality or substance or avoidance that will change that fact. The more snowflake you are, the faster you melt. When you want to be protected against offenses and slights and injuries so that you can live in a reality created in your own image, you're what's called a narcissist.
And you know what the budding narcissists of our world need a good strong dose of? Non-woke military training, beginning with those crack-of-dawn wake up calls at basic.
Train Hard. Train Smart. Play War Games Not Woke Games.