Yes, of course, you can look it up. It is not secret. The point is that without googling it, most people do not know. Despite the fact that the military enjoys strong emotional support across the entire political spectrum, few Americans know much about the numbers, the people, or their work.
What percentage of West Point cadets self-identify as liberal or Democrat?
What percentage of active duty non-commissioned officers self-identify as liberal or Democrat?
Do you know without asking your search engine, where the most US troops are stationed outside the United States?
What percentage are female?
What combat roles do females fill?
Conservatives and Republicans are no better at these numbers.
During World War II fully 10% of the populace was in the military. Even through the 1970s, the draft meant that many people knew service members, had family members, or co-workers who were veterans. Right now, as Luke's report shows, about one-half of one percent (maybe 0.8% all active combined; and maybe just under 2% including all reserves) are in the military. Yet, we expect a "global war against terrorism" as well as profiled responses to North Korea, China, and Russia, in addition to high-tech status, even into outer space.
The numbers that Luke posted explain one population skew: the South and West are over-represented in the military with the Northeast and Midwest under-represented statistically. One factor is that kids from high school tend to volunteer from those places because they have military people in their social settings. They are familiar with it. One reason for that is that the South and West have the open land for big installations. But it is also true that after the Civil War, the North placed big army bases in the South. In addition, the South and the West have cultural traditions of male personal honor that reinforce a commitment to military service.
(Edited by Michael E. Marotta on 8/03, 4:02am)