No to Drug Traffickers and Homosexuals
Criticism in a time of war is essential to the maintenance of any kind of democratic government.
--Sen. Robert Taft, (R) Ohio
The USMC and U.S. Army are recruiting more enlistees with criminal records, "including some with felony convictions." This is a questionable and illegal action by those entities. It seems Department of Defense (DoD) policies are above the law. Where in the phrase, "Duty, honor, country..." does it say, "convicted felon"?
It is illegal for a convected felon to be around firearms unless legal rights have been restored. In fact, felons are not allowed to own cartridges or any other ammunition. For the average felon, the likelihood of this restoration is akin to an act of God; it seldom happens. The legal costs to do so and the policies of the federal government preclude restoration of gun rights for ordinary individuals.
The Army calls these "moral waivers," in a manner of doublespeak. Shouldn't they be "immorality waivers"? It seems that even with higher enlistment cash bonuses, allowing more high school dropouts and low-scoring aptitude candidates, and loosening weight and age restrictions, the Army is still not making its numbers.
The number of moral waivers has increased 65% since 2003. from 4,918 to 8,129 in 2006, with the sharpest increase in waivers for "serious misdemeanors," including "aggravated assault, burglary, robbery and vehicular homicide." Waivers for less serious crimes, like drug use, have "dropped or remained stable."
There are also indications that the Army is wooing skinheads and other gang members to flesh out their ranks. Possibly it is that intimidating skinhead tactics are an excellent skill set for today's new Army requirements of imposing torture upon detained individuals.
Still, the Army has its pride. They will not recruit those with more than one felony, or drug traffickers. Considering the waving poppy fields of Afghanistan, that seems like a wise restriction.
As a citizen and a retired soldier, this writer finds it exceedingly strange that convicted felons can openly join our military, but homosexuals are treated as scum by recruiters and the administration, alike. Forget the criminals--allow open service by homosexuals and DoD can remain a law-abiding institution. DoD must comply with the law and disallow felons from carrying weapons.