The U.S. military estimates that roughly two thirds of today’s youth are ineligible to serve due to a variety of physical, behavioral, and educational issues. Military hopefuls can be deemed unfit for service due to tattoos, felony convictions, low scores on intelligence tests, and drug use, among other reasons.
The most common reason recruits are disqualified is obesity. Child and adolescent obesity rates have skyrocketed in the past 30 years, and in some states nearly one out of five high schoolers is considered to be obese.
The military’s new tattoo standards have also put a hamper on some recruits. The military has banned tattoos on the hand, forearm, calf, and above the neck. In most states, it is illegal to tattoo someone under the age of 18 unless a parent has given consent or is present.
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