Saturday, November 22, 2008

Mr. President-Elect, it's time to end 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'

Dear Mr. President-Elect:

There is some concern around the blogosphere, that you are hesitating in ending the horrific policy of
'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'

This policy was WRONG when instituted under Bill Clinton.

But, back then, the United States Armed Forces was the fittest and strongest Armed Forces in the world.

This is NOT the case today, in 2008.

We have a U.S. Military stretched to its limits.

We are fighting two wars.

We have lost over 4,000 lives between those conflicts.

We have lost tens of thousands of soldiers who are permanently maimed and no good for active duty any longer.

We have lowered the entry standards so far, that it is NOT uncommon to see among recruits classes of folks that were eliminated without hesitation years ago.

What classes are those?

1. Rural Terrorists, better known as White Supremacists.
2. Urban Terrorists, better known as Gangbangers.
3. Straight up criminals.

Now, I would like for someone to explain to me, like I'm a member of Sasha Obama's classroom..

the justification for giving the United States Military Uniform to White Supremacist thugs, Gangbanging thugs, and criminal thugs..

But, stripping it from law abiding homosexuals and lesbians who want to serve their country.


Anonymous said...

Homosexuals are not denied in serving in the US military. The policy simply means not to flaunt a lifestyle that all don't agree with in front of everyone, to include some nations. Whether right or wrong, that's the policy.

Now, I agree far to many "personalities" or getting in. That's because there are not enough bodies to go around. But this can be fixed: reinstitute the Draft.

Brian said...

Don't ask, don't tell is actually a good policy for the military. (at least the "don't ask, don't tell" part).

I can explain that later... right now i'm late for work.

Brian said...

And Obama is not likely to change it... The Service Chiefs and the CJCS will tell him not to.

Truthiz said...

I must say that I’m in agreement with the opinion expressed by one of Andrew Sullivan’s readers.

A reader writes:

"Allow me to be a dissenter on the criticism people have been leveling at Obama for wanting to move slowly on DADT.

The public and younger folks may be perfectly supportive of opening the military to gays serving openly, but that's not the case with the military. No matter how delicately the administration approaches the issue, there will be resentment within the military. And it could turn violent at the lower echelons.

My fear is that moving too quickly and creating resentment by repealing the ban will simply make things dangerous for gays who are currently serving. I want Obama to take the time building consensus and support.

I want him to work with the JCS to make that happen. If service-members see that the policy isn't being ram-rodded down the military's throat, there may not be as open hostility as there currently is or will be.

I want DADT repealed and the ban on gays lifted. Badly. But, I've been with the military for the past 11 years under DADT. Another year is not a long time and worth it if the policy change is implemented smoothly and people are safer as a result. I don't want Clinton's mistakes repeated or compounded."

rikyrah said...

I have to admit, I'm shocked by folks trying to justify DADT. I really am. If you're willing to put on the uniform, and willing to die for this country, it should not matter if you are a homosexual or a lesbian.

I don't get it. Of all the things involved with civil rights for gays, this is one of the easiest.

We can't AFFORD this policy anymore. Not with the decimated and depleted Armed Services that we have right now.

Brian said...

Some may be unclear on the law as it pertains to gays in the military.
And some are getting don't ask, don't tell, mixed up with a so called "ban". These are not the same. The ban has to do with openly expressing certain things...and engaging in certain behaviors.

At the present time, there is no explicit ban on gays in the military.... if that were the case, the military would have to get rid of at least 10% of its people (and that isn't going to happen).

What the current law pretty much says is that gays can't serve openly as homosexuals.

I just wanted to make that clear.

I know folks will want to debate that until the cows come home... but i'm not going to argue that point.

Regarding don't ask don't tell... you have to understand military culture to understand why this is good policy. I think it's good because it DOES allow gays to serve...and to serve without being subject to harassment, threats, bodily harm, discrimination, etc. Or at makes it less likely that they will face these problems. Under the policy, they are treated like everyone else....exactly how it SHOULD be. But if you remove that policy.... and FORCE the military to allow open sexual expression in the workplace...(where it doesn't belong anyway) then all Hell will break loose. Things will only get exponentially worse for them... not better.

Don't ask, don't tell actually does more to protect the gay or lesbian service member... both physically, and administratively.
Problems don't tend to start for gays and lesbians in the service...until they have been exposed as such or until they have outed themselves. Then all the problems start to surface...or intensify. If it were a perfect world... they could serve openly without any problems at all... i'd love to see that. But that's not how things are in the real world....certainly not in the military.

Allowing open homosexuality in the military will expose people to harassment, taunting, assaults, abuse/rape, being ostracized, extreme discrimination for promotions and work assignments, etc. These conditions already exist of course... but things would be much worse for gays and lesbians serving openly. Not only that... but the situation would cause a distraction (a dangerous one) for troops in the field, especially during wartime. EXACTLY WHAT YOU DON'T WANT TO HAPPEN.

I can tell you, that gay activities take place in the military.... including on the battlefield.... especially among lesbians (they tend to be more open). Gays and lesbians in the military are nothing new... they have always been there. But the idea is to allow them to serve with as little hassle as possible, in a work environment that protects their privacy. What they do in the bedroom shouldn't be brought into the workplace anyway.... especially not the military, where the stakes are that much higher. I don't believe that it's necessarily a civil right or human right to bring or impose your sexual preferences...or to bring your sexuality into the workplace.... because the two shouldn't mix. What you do in the privacy of your bedroom or barracks is between you and your partner... THAT is something you should have the right to... But once you enter the actual workplace.... it should be left at the door.

I do believe these folks should be protected from discrimination, abuse, etc...and that should take precedence over all else. I also believe that the readiness of the military is also more important than this eagerness to be openly gay. Protections should be written into the laws for them... so they aren't subject to assault, rape, discrimination on promotions and work assignments, etc. But in order to make sure that they are protected in the military, and that they are in a safe need a policy that keeps their bedroom activity and preferences private... that keeps the work separate from the bedroom activity.

It's a lot harder to discriminate against someone who you don't know is gay or lesbian for sure, one way or another... It should be seen as an added layer of protection.

I think having gays and lesbians serve openly (which, as far as I know, has never been done before as a pro-active affirmative policy in the military...a policy forcing the military to allow the open expression of sexual preference in a workplace that has nothing to do with that whatsoever) would likely lead to all kinds of problems for the military and for gays and lesbians, and it would expose these folks to unnecessary risks. It would likely create morale problems throughout the services.

Is the military affirmatively FORCED to allow heterosexuals to serve openly?

I think gays and lesbians are misguided on the don't ask don't tell issue...and they probably don't understand what they are asking for. It seems as if they don't understand military culture....they seem to think its the same as the civilian culture...and it's not...and they won't be able to change that. They also believe that the policy is an out & out ban.... and it's not.

Gays and lesbians should embrace don't ask, don't tell and use it for their advantage...and build better policies and laws around it... instead of trying to serve openly in the least appropriate environment to do so.

Again... gays are already serving. They have been serving forever... their battle in this case seems to be centered around being able to do so "openly"...and it's a misguided battle IMO.

Out of all the battles they could be fighting...this is one of the most misguided.

All in all... the policy is there to protect the gay and lesbian soldier as much as possible....and to protect readiness, morale...and unit cohesiveness. Once you create this can of worms... the lid will come off of readiness...morale, etc... and the military will have an even bigger problem than what was there before.

This is one case where National security probably carries slightly more weight. Federal judges, overall, would probably agree.