In the cult-classic “Stripes,” the late, great, heavyweight actor John Candy told his fellow “recruits” that he joined the Army so he could lose a few pounds and “walk out of there a lean-mean fighting machine.”
Now, that same fitness plan could soon be a reality for millions of obese Americans looking to serve the good ol’ U-S-of-A. According to several reports, the Army is considering dropping certain weight limits for recruits so long as he or she is able to pass the physical fitness test with flying colors.
Per Military.com, “Soldiers who score at least a 540 on the Army Combat Fitness Test, or ACFT, will be exempt from having their body fat measured.” The highest score possible on the fitness test is 600.
It is possible to be physically fit, albeit plus size — take any NFL lineman, for instance. It would be very difficult, as the physical fitness test is still challenging, but in theory, an obese person could skip the “tape test” if they crush everything else.
The potential plan — which could allow larger recruits to avoid a potential obstacle to training — comes as a beleaguered military is struggling to figure out why recruitment is down across the board.
Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Jimmy Byrne observed in June that “Nearly every branch has struggled to meet its recruitment goals for 2022, with some falling as short as 40%. Worse yet, only about a quarter of America’s youth meet current eligibility standards — and recent surveys show only 9% are even interested.”
As pointed out by Byrne, one explanation could be the “wholesale embrace of woke politics.”
Of course, if you ask anybody in the Biden administration — such as Army Secretary Christine Wormuth — there’s no woke politics in the military — just diversity, inclusion, and equity (DIE) training.
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) October 10, 2022
In other words, the geniuses in Biden’s Pentagon cannot figure out why Americans are not interested in a military that mandates DIE-ing.
Earlier in 2022, the Army also ditched a gender- and age-neutral physical fitness test. That means women and older recruits have different requirements for physical fitness than men and younger Americans do.
In addition to woke Americans, other branches such as the Air Force have also been encouraging expectant mothers to sign up for the fight.
In September, the Air Force announced that it “has updated a policy to allow women, both enlisted and civilian, to apply and compete for an Officer Training School commission while pregnant.”
“We’re in a race for talent, and our policies need to reflect that,” Under Secretary of the Air Force Gina Ortiz Jones said in a statement. “This policy change will ensure we’re able to fully tap into the talent amongst our force as well as those looking to join us.”
It does not seem wise to have a military full of leftist pregnant women, but could it really be so bad if a bunch of folks like “Ox” in “Stripes” join the Army?
The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.