In 2007, only 11% of enlisted military recruits came from the poorest U.S. neighborhoods.Writing at the Wall Street Journal, Ann Marlowe crushes the leftist myth that the majority of those who enlist come from the poorest communities and that they enlist because they have no other options. In point of fact, in 2008 25% of those who enlisted came from the wealthiest segment of society.
From her column:
It should no more be necessary to write this article than to prove that there were Jews killed in the World Trade Center on 9/11. And yet the mythology refuses to die. Just last week, two well-educated and well-known writer acquaintances of mine remarked in passing on the "fact" that those who serve in the U.S. military typically have no other career options. America's soldiers, they said, were poor and black.(READ MORE)
They don't mean this to denigrate their service—no, they mean it as a critique of American society, which turns its unemployed into cannon fodder. Especially today with high unemployment, the charge goes, hapless youths we fail to educate are embarking on a one-way trip to Afghanistan.
These allegations—most frequently leveled at the Army, the military's biggest service and the one with the highest casualty rate—are false.