‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ propagates inequality

Come celebrate 30 years!

Our nation’s military has fought bravely since anyone can remember, but issues have recently surfaced that suggest some of our servicemen are more worried about their fellow soldiers’ personal lives than the objectives given to them.

To avoid speculation about my background and sexual orientation, let’s just get this out of the way. I’m a Christian, conservative Republican, and straight as a board. I’ll admit I’m a bit radical at times. One could probably compare me to Joe Miller without the attitude problem, lies and sketchy evasiveness.

Through all this, even a conservative Republican like me can recognize the unconstitutional, prejudice-filled behavior that is not only condoned, but also required in the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law.

About 10,900 members of the armed forces have been dishonorably discharged under this law according to the Anchorage Daily News.

Quite frankly, it’s amazing to me that the American people have been fooled into letting this go on for as long as it has.

I respect the American military greatly, but if homophobic soldiers can’t put their own feelings and preferences aside to focus on their primary objective – fighting for this country to protect the constitution and the citizens therein – perhaps they should have chosen a different career path.

If our soldiers can be bothered so easily by a single aspect in the life of someone who is fighting alongside them, how can the military ever expect to do anything worthwhile?

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Contrary to popular belief, as it seems, gay, lesbian and bisexual citizens of this great nation are not transformed into ravaging beasts by their sexual orientation, governed only by their intense desire to harass and rape straight American soldiers and the public as we know it.

These good people probably haven’t formed a secret organization dedicated to the disruption of military efforts and preying upon the weak.

Australia is an excellent example of a country that lifted their similar policy and found that their military was improved because of it.

“Based on the results of prior studies… this study finds that the full lifting of the ban on gay service has not led to any identifiable negative effects on troop morale, combat effectiveness, recruitment and retention, or other measures of military performance,” states a study done by Palm Center, a research institute of the University of California.

The study went on to say that, “Available evidence suggests that policy changes associated with the lifting of the ban may have contributed to improvements in productivity and working environments for service members.”

In fact, there are twenty-five countries that now allow openly gay and lesbian soldiers in their militaries, according to Palm Center’s website.

The Australian Defense Forces have since flourished with little complaint. In fact, only 1.21 percent of complaints received have had to do with sexual orientation misconduct issues, according to the study.

Doesn’t the United States typically pride itself on being one of the more innovative nations? It appears as though we’ve fallen behind when it comes to one of the crucial elements of American culture: equality.

2 COMMENTS

  1. I have to say I appreciate your intent but, as a veteran who served with several gay people, I take offense to some of the statements you made. I wonder if you interviewed any soldiers for this article that made you feel they were homophobic and more worried about their fellow soldier’s personal lives than their military objectives? That is quite a statement.

    Honestly this issue has FAR more repercussions than the average citizen is aware of…most of them simply a matter of policy. For instance, being married gives you select privileges while in the military. Those privileges include where you get to live, who you can bring to certain social occasions and also how much money you make.

    Among other issues, the military is trying to figure out how they are going to transition to gay people serving openly while also not discriminating against them because their particular relationships, in most cases, are not considered “marriages.”

    I’d also like to say that for the most part, and especially in high stress situations, the military is one of the most accepting environments a person can be a part of.

    Thanks!

  2. Shana, the statement about homophobic soldiers was identifying a subset of the main population of soldiers, not calling everyone homophobic. As in any population at this time, there are unfortunately homophobes who are doing their best to discriminate against gays. These can reasonably be assumed to be the people responsible for the actions leading up to most of the dishonorable discharges. They are the soldiers who seem to find it hard to accept their fellow soldiers for who they are and not make an issue about it.

    Also, gay marriage is a completely different issue. This article simply states that the policy for allowing gays to serve openly has proven to be helpful in foreign military forces and it doesn’t make sense to prevent it here.

    Relationships within the gay community are just like those in the straight community, repealing DADT would allow gays to date and not fear repercussions such as dishonorable discharge. Policy changes dealing with where people live based on their marriage status and how much money they make by being married can be dealt with when gay marriage is actually recognized.

    As far as the ‘certain social occasions’ go, what difference would it make to you to have to look at two guys wearing suits and ties instead of a guy and a girl? In all probability you wouldn’t be able to notice the difference between them and any pair of straight buddies hanging out together.

    As it seems fair, I will also admit the obvious bias I may have. I am politically liberal and an openly bisexual male.

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