Mabus worried too many unfit for military service

U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus said Friday he was worried after he learned about 75 percent of Americans between the ages of 18 and 24 can’t serve in the military because they lack the education, are overweight or have a criminal record.

Mabus, a former Mississippi governor, has been traveling the state as part of Navy Week. He’s spoken to the Legislature and other groups about the relationship between education, health and national security. Mabus said a recent study found 75 percent of the U.S. population that would normally be eligible to serve in the military can’t because they don’t have enough education, are out of shape or have a criminal record. This threatens U.S. national security, he said.

“That’s a really scary fact,” Mabus said in a meeting with the Sun Herald. “It’s a nationwide issue.”

Sun Herald
3/25/11