The Oregonian broke this story on Sunday, where an 18-year-old autistic man was recruited into the military and is supposed to report to basic training in August. It’s appalling and another blow for all the reputable recruiters in the services.
Jared didn’t know there was a war raging in Iraq until his parents told him last fall — shortly after a military recruiter stopped him outside a Portland strip mall and complimented his black Converse All-Stars.
“When Jared first started talking about joining the Army, I thought, `Well, that isn’t going to happen,”‘ said Paul Guinther, Jared’s father. “I told my wife not to worry about it. They’re not going to take anybody in the service who’s autistic.”
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But they did. Last month, Jared came home with papers showing that he had not only enlisted, but signed up for the Army’s most dangerous job: cavalry scout. He is scheduled to leave for basic training Aug. 16.