Good News

The army has released Jared Guinther, the 18-year-old autistic teen who had signed up for “one of the Army's most dangerous jobs, cavalry scout, after being heavily recruited.”

Gaylan Johnson, spokesman for the United States Military Entrance Processing Command, said Guinther's disability was not disclosed in the medical exam and information regarding his condition was not available to the command until after the enrollment process was complete. The command oversees medical exams for the Army.

Guinther's mother told The Oregonian she informed recruiters about her son's disability by telephone as Jared was being tested, but that he was accepted for enlistment anyway. Family and friends say anyone who reviewed the young man's medical or school records would know he was unfit for military service.

"Jared would play with buttons for hours on end," she told the Oregonian. "He'd play with one toy for days. Loud noises bothered him. He was scared to death of the toilet flushing, the lawn mower."

An investigation is under way into whether recruiters improperly concealed Guinther's condition.
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) wrote a letter to Rummy about the case, and said, in part, "I am concerned that the military has created a situation where recruiters are pressured to act unethically in order to successfully fulfill their orders.” Well, yeah. In spite of lowering admission standards, easing age restrictions, and opening up the ranks to people with a history of serious criminal misconduct, recruiters are still having a rough time. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that people are realizing they’re not just signing up for the military, but signing up for a war with no end in sight, during which they may not even get enough to eat, and face the very likely possibility of being stop-lossed even when their gig is supposed to be up. Just a thought.

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