Where do America’s Soldiers Come From?

There are hundreds of military dynasties in the United States, where serving in the Army, Navy, Marines, or Air Force, is a traditional that reaches back, on occasion, to colonial times. But in today’s military family member is more likely to join up for financial security, as a sort of family-run business. Women and men who are signing up today come mostly from the Southern states — places like Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, and Florida. Plus many enlistees come from families that live cheek by jowl with military camps across the country, like Colorado Springs — which is next door to Fort Carson and several Air Force bases — the whole of El Paso County, where Colorado Springs is the county seat, produces more military enlistees than any other county in the United States. And now that women are encouraged equally with men to enlist, the numbers in El Paso county are growing larger. Another consideration for families newly arrived from another country is the promise of citizenship — although this has not turned out well for many soldiers during the Trump administration. There are several federal court cases pending in which soldiers who were born overseas allege they were promised American citizenship when they joined the military, only to be told later that the offer had been withdrawn.