The United States Army is looking for fine, upstanding citizens willing to come forth and lay their lives and well being on the line for the good and betterment of their country, land of the free, because of them, the brave. The Army sees beyond your race, religion, and gender (or so they say) and cares only about the ferocity and passion in one's heart for their country-- unless, of course, you have tattoos. Those are a no-go.
The changes to Army Regulation 670-1 concern things such as hygiene and personal appearance for soldiers in the Army, and the proposed legislation would only effect them; other branches of the military have individual guidelines and rules when it comes to appearances. The bill has not yet passed; it awaits the last step of receiving a signature from the Sergeant Major before it is put to action.
While the proposed changes involved other aspects of appearance, such as make up, hair styles, and nail polish, the only confirmed changes to the policy were about tattoos. While the army already prohibits tattoos that are sexist, racist, or otherwise blatantly problematic, the new rules could enforce restrictions prohibiting tattoos visible below the elbow or knee, and anything above the neckline.
The new regulations, if passed, could make protocol for soldiers to cover the costs for removing any tattoos that would break the new dress code, and could even lead to higher-ups having the authority to order soldiers to remove tattoos that didn't adhere to the code.
The large consensus is that the incoming stricter guidelines are to make soldiers seem more uniform, and would act as a form of "sacrificing for the sake of the force." Any changes enacted are expected to be implemented in thirty to sixty days.
Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.