The U.S. Army is experiencing a sharp decline in the number of white recruits it’s bringing into the service, a new report found.
According to data analyzed by Military.com, “A total of 44,042 new Army recruits were categorized by the service as white in 2018, but that number has fallen consistently each year to a low of 25,070 in 2023, with a 6% dip from 2022 to 2023 being the most significant drop.” The report further noted how “[n]o other demographic group” has experienced such a downward trend in recent years, and that the “rate at which white recruitment has fallen far outpaces nationwide demographic shifts.”
Much like the Navy and Air Force, the Army missed its recruiting targets for the 2023 fiscal year, with the branch coming up 10,000 recruits short of its goal of 65,000. When discussing the matter with reporters in October, Army Secretary Christine Wormuth claimed the Army understood its 2023 target was a “stretch goal” and described the branch’s plans to launch a “new ‘talent acquisition’ enlisted occupational specialty dedicated to recruiting” to help stymie the problem.
The branch also came up 15,000, or 25 percent, short of its 2022 fiscal year goals, according to the Army Times.
In detailing potential variables contributing to the Army’s decline in white recruits, such as a fluctuating labor market and higher obesity rates among American youth, Military.com cited remarks from an unnamed Army official who used the media’s infamous “Republicans pounce!” framing to blame the problem on conservatives. Rather than highlight or criticize the military’s embrace of racialist, so-called “diversity, equity, and inclusion,” or DEI, ideology, the aforementioned official dismissed the idea that young recruits “care” about the service’s leftward trend, suggesting it’s “the older people in their life … who have a lot of influence” about whether these youth decide to serve.
Of course, Military.com’s Steve Beynon was more than willing to adopt Democrats’ framing of the situation. In characterizing Republican criticisms of the military’s infatuation with leftist orthodoxy, Beynon accused “conservative lawmakers and media” of using the military as “a partisan cudgel against the Biden administration” and dishonestly summarized the “attacks” as Republicans “zero[ing[ in on the services being more inclusive for women, service members from racial minority groups and LGBTQ+ troops.”
“Often, those ‘woke’ critiques include few specifics,” Beynon wrote.
Such a characterization is completely dismissive of DEI’s root problem, which is that it demands merit be dismissed in favor of a discriminatory system that prioritizes an individual’s personal features, such as skin color and sexual orientation. Those who qualify for a certain position on merit but don’t meet the discriminating entity’s goal of being more “diverse” are passed over in favor of those who meet institutionally preferred identitarian standards. The military adopting such an ideology could portend potentially disastrous results for U.S. national security.
In an apparent attempt to “diversify” its ranks, the Army released a recruiting ad two years ago featuring an Army corporal “raised by two moms” and a cartoon depiction of an LGBT “pride” parade. After failing to bring new American youth into the service, the Army reportedly underwent a “rebrand” in early 2023 “in hopes of increasing enlistment numbers.” This campaign has notably produced ads containing “no explicit emphasis on [individuals’] immutable characteristics” or the “softness of previous efforts.”
So-called “diversity,” however, still remains at the forefront of the Army’s campaign, according to Wormuth, who stated, “You’re going to see lots of different people doing lots of different roles,” including “men and women” and “people of color.” This is “important because one of the things we found in our market research is that a lot of young people admire the Army, but they don’t think there are people like them in the Army,” she added.