Well, being a really weird, ‘liberal,’ young guy, I listen to NPR Talk of the Nation. Well, May 4, 2009, NPR had an Op-Ed piece with Retired Admiral Jerome Johnson, a proponent for the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Policy (http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=103784642). With the Obama Administration attempting end this policy, and with me stewing on what this admiral said during his interview, I couldn’t hold my opinions in anymore.
The title of his op-ed was Gays and Military a bad fit. WTF?? Are we living in the 19th Century again, or what? Well, let’s go through the wonderful, marvelous history of our fine military, when it comes to oppressing people that actually want to serve their country. BLACKS: not fully integrated in the armed services until World War II era, even though they served and sacrificed themselves in numerous battles and important wars (including Civil War). JAPANESE/ASIAN AMERICANS: almost not allowed to serve during WWII due to fear of sabotage, but one of the most decorated groups in the European theater. WOMEN: still not allowed to serve in the front line due to men feeling ‘soft’ at the sight of a woman dying. NATIVE AMERICANS: kind of iffy and pushed around during WWII until we realized we could use them for code talking (Navajo).
Yea, our military has a fine history of integrating minorities. Well, now, it’s showing it’s greatness again with integration of the LGBT community. Let me do a real quick disclosure, first. I am proud of my nation and the people that serve in our military. If I see a person in military dress, I will go shake his/her hand and thank them. In fact, if I hadn’t had a ‘pesky’ incident during high school, I would be serving in the Navy or Coast Guard right now, but I digress.
Anyways, Admiral Jerome Johnson has some interesting (is that the correct word to use for this) points about the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Policy. First, I didn’t realize we had a Section IV, Title X, that makes it illegal for the LGBT community to serve in the military. WTF???? “Wow, I want to serve my country, but I am illegally serving it because I love someone as the same sex as me.” That has to be a horrible thought running through anyones’ mind while they are being trained/having bullets whiz by their heads. I wonder if they fear their comrades not even wanting to save them if they find out about their secret.
This admiral wants that section/title to be preserved because ‘it’s incompatible with military services.’ And it’s been upheld by federal courts (how? it’s constitutional???). Yay California for having someone smart wanting to repeal the law.
And this admiral writes a piece to present that he believes there are no LGBT in the armed services. It might harm recruiting, retention, leadership, readiness, and the culture of the armed services. WHAT! Wow, I sometimes think that we progress, but in reality, we still have leaps and bounds to go, and other times, just go backwards in time.
Well, 54% of armed services would be imposed that the policy would be eliminated, and ~228,000 would quote on quote terminate their contract if the policy would be terminated. Um, why would I want people protecting me if they are not willing to protect everyone for equal rights. Besides, it’s not THEIR LIFE!!!!
This has become even greater news because a highly decorated Air Force Officer, Lt. Col. Victor Fehrenbach, has been discovered to be gay and is fighting to stay in the military (http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/272904).
Their argument for keeping this policy: the specialized living conditions of armed services, including the ‘small, intament’ living conditions. LGBT Community also impose security risks, quote on quote. Also, they cannot serve in specialized armed services, or be promoted. This will add ‘undue stress’ to our readiness, unlike the stress everyone is experiencing with the military conflicts. Joy for being inappropriate for imposing this on the military culture right now.
Apparently all LGBT people find all straight people attractive, hot, and wants to do them (hopefully you note the sarcasm in that). I know that straight people never utilize their intimate conditions to relieve their sexual frustrations (HA! RIGHT!).
Why not have a don’t ask, don’t tell for heterosexuals as well? Why this seperate treatment? Is it the heteronormativity of our cultural, or in this case, the military culture (aka, homophobia)? How would this destroy our military????
I understand that people do not morally approve of this ‘lifestyle’; however, to deem it illegal and to ruin someone’s career is completely wrong. I’m sure that many LGBT members of the military still would not disclose their personal lifes if the policy was eradicated because the stigma they experience. Why can’t people just learn that it’s their personal life, and not everyone needs to know about it (which goes the same way for heterosexuals, where I bet you don’t want everyone to know about your intimate, sexual life)?
Well, I feel better getting this off my chest.