Black America Must Rethink Military Enlistment: The Next War May Be Our Last

It looks as though the US military will have to depend on people of color to fight for their way of life in the near future.

Black America Must Rethink Military Enlistment: The Next War May Be Our Last

Surprisingly, the United States is not at war, directly. Though they are indirectly involved in two proxy wars, Ukraine and Israel, active-duty soldiers have not been called up since the twenty-year war in Afghanistan. Apparently, right now the military is having a recruiting problem with whites, but not with Blacks and Hispanics. Why is that?

One reason in particular is that the political ideology has shifted tremendously and Democracy is being challenged as a legitimate form of government. The nation is on the verge of an ideology shift into fascism.  Where does Black America stand on the political spectrum and the future of this country? There is clearly a racial divide in military recruitment, participation and functionality.

According to, “In 2018, 56.4% of new recruits were categorized as white. In 2023, that number had fallen to 44%. During that same five-year period, Black recruits have gone from 20% to 24% of the pool, and Hispanic recruits have risen from 17% to 24%, with both groups seeing largely flat recruiting totals but increasing as a percentage of incoming soldiers as white recruiting has fallen.”

In case of a new war, which conceivably will be devastating because of the risk involved in world domination and a shift in powers, the United States may not have the manpower to stand the challenge. Overall, recruiting is down. Nevertheless, regardless of the numbers, the demographics tell a story about the shift in opinion of the military.

The rate at which white recruitment has fallen far outpaces nationwide demographic shifts. In a good ole fashion “you got what you deserve,” backlash, white guys are not enlisting because of how the conservative party has trashed the military as “woke,” a growing obesity epidemic and an underfunded public education system. All things the Republican Party has complained about, defunded or refused to fund.

“Among other problems, opioid overdoses have increasingly pummeled the U.S. every year, with 80,000 deaths in 2021 and about 75% of overdose victims being white and many in their twenties, according to data compiled by the Kaiser Family Foundation.” Opioid addiction treatment being another program conservatives refuse to fund though all their talk about mental health treatment.

Not surprisingly, all the southern states that have refused government assistance to expand Medicaid have resulted in further destruction of the white male. “Nationally, the South has the highest prevalence of obesity, something researchers have attributed to a slew of factors, including restrictions on access to health care, high-quality fitness facilities and healthy food. Large swaths of the South also have relatively low household incomes -- putting easy access to fitness training and healthy foods even further out of reach.”

Then they complain about the recruitment problem, further blaming it on anything other than their own incompetence and neglect of the American people. One conservative Congressman, Paul Gosar said, “The number of white recruits has plummeted,” Gosar wrote in an unhinged fundraising email sent out Thursday, with the subject line, “dismantling woke marxist ideologies.” “[It’s] a casualty of this cultural skirmish that has left our Army beleaguered and besieged by ‘woke’ ideologies.”

Pushback to this statement came from a military official who “pointed to partisan attacks from conservative lawmakers and media, which has an overwhelmingly white audience. Those groups have used the military as a partisan cudgel against the Biden administration, lambasting the services for being "woke," or so preoccupied with liberal values that they have abandoned their warfighting priorities. In most cases, those attacks have zeroed in on the services being more inclusive for women, service members from racial minority groups and LGBTQ+ troops.”

So, it looks as though the US military will have to depend on people of color to fight for their way of life in the near future. But what does people of color get in return? Will they be treated better on the civilian front? Why should we fight for a country that shoots to kill our young Black men (and women)? A country that orchestrates an entire system of private prisons to confine and neutralize us and a court system that makes laws specifically for the imprisonment of Blacks? Why should we train to assassinate people of other nations who have done nothing to us as a people in defense of a country who pillages and plunders countries for their natural resources?

"In 2020, Black Soldiers comprised approximately 21% of the active-duty Army, 15% of the Army National Guard and 21% of the Army Reserve. Black Americans serve in the Army at a rate that is higher than their representation in the U.S. population. The active-duty percentage of Black Soldiers has remained higher than the representation of Black Americans in the U.S. population since 2002, with peaks in 2002 and 2014. In 2020, the Black or African American population — 41.1 million — accounted for 12.4% of all people living in the United States, compared with 38.9 million and 12.6% in 2010."

In the past, Blacks and Hispanics have joined the military for financial and educational purposes, and to secure a future. But those benefits have been scaled back tremendously in the last three decades. More military families are dependent on food stamps and some sort of public assistance to maintain a living, and conservative politicians are finding ways to continue to cut those benefits also.

The next war will not be a boots on the ground war. It will be a survival of the masses war possibly due to a nuclear fallout, or a domestic political revolution. Military soldiers must be better trained at providing aid to the injured, protecting against attacks, and operating automated forms of warfare. Training will also be needed for troops to understand who the enemy actually is. Because of the political divisions in the country as of now, some haters of Democracy are coaxing troops to turn against their own people.

Black America must begin to think about the future, not in terms of economic security, but in terms of ethics and principles. Do we want to serve a country in which half the electorate does not believe in Democracy, the very thing we are supposedly fighting for? Or are we confident enough in Democracy that we can enlist and determine who are the real enemies and who deserves to live?