Free Markets, Free People

It is time to repeal DADT

Ben Smith at the Politico carries the story, I’m one of the signatories:

A group of leading military bloggers has issued a joint statement urging Congress to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”The community of “mil-bloggers” — often hawkish, critical of White House and military leadership, devoted to both the First and Second Amendments — isn’t easy to define politically, but has proven an increasingly powerful voice from the ranks. The statement, which says that there have always been gay soldiers and that “very little will actually change” with the repeal of “Don’t Ask,” carries the signatures of the authors of some of the most prominent: Blackfive, Q&O, Outside the Wire, and the US Naval Institute Blog, among others.

The expected pushback is already beginning to mount in the comment section of the link above.  I’ve thought about it long and hard.  I’ve actually changed my mind from years ago.  I guess that’s because I’ve known of and served with soldiers I knew were gay.  And every one of them were good soldiers who served honorably and did an excellent job.

I’ve also come to understand that it isn’t going to be the activists or those who want to flaunt their homosexuality who are going to seek to serve their country. Being a Soldier, Sailor, Marine or Airman is a hard, dirty and dangerous job.  Those that choose to serve are not going to do it because of who they love, but simply because want to serve their nation and the military is their chosen method of doing so.

This is a cultural change thing.  And the culture has been changing for years to more and more acceptance of homosexuality in terms of offering equal rights and protections.  This is simply an extension of that.  If I thought it would seriously effect readiness, I’d probably oppose it – but I don’t think it will.  Will there be some problems and some objections to overcome?  Yes.  But the military can and will overcome them.

The institution of the military is important to me, I’ve thought about this in some depth and come to the conclusion this is the right thing to do.  I agree with SecDef Gates and the JCS that DADT is a policy which needs to be repealed.  But I also support their recommendation that it needs to be done thoughtfully and at their own pace.  It also means that Congress will need to enact legislation to makes changes the UCMJ and some other necessary legislative steps to make this come to pass.

Sexual orientation should never be a bar to serving your country honorably in the profession of arms.

~McQ

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173 Responses to It is time to repeal DADT

    • >>Sexual orientation should never be a bar to serving your country honorably in the profession of arms.

      Your fathers who served and your father’s father’s who served never would refer to this as “sexual orientation”, but to what it actually is: immoral perversion. The ends don’t justify the means. If its ok for open homosexuality in the military, then why have any moral codes whatsoever? Why screen recruits out because of bad finances or serious criminal records or even pedophiles and polgymsists? In the end, they can be redefined as “financially challenged” or “single wife averse” so the bitter pill is made better on swallowing.  External cultural distortions gained in the outside world are being pushed by moral relatvists who have convinced themselves that their is nothing deeply wrong with homosexuality.

      It almost seems to me that it is irrelevant whether they fight well, unless you are conditioned to allow the ends to justify the means. Moral relativity shockingly seems to be taking the military by storm. And, it shouldn’t be entertained simply because the gay agenda will infiltrate the military even more. This will be just one vistory in a string for the left. Its a shame that the upper eschalons of command are indulging the politicizing of the rank and file.

      • My father, who served for 36 years, never had a problem with gays in the military, as long as they did their job. I did 28. Most people I know in the military (and have talked with) see this as a molehill disguised as a mountain. You obviously have a problem with homosexuality. Don’t try to pawn off your phobias on me with words like “honor” and “moral relativism”. You wouldn’t understand the terms if they were explained to you.

        • My father retired out of the Marines. I retired out of the Air Force/Air National guard. We both believe that homosexuality is immoral and deserves no special rights. Heck, science hasn’t even prove anything homosexual as “normal”…unless they get some of that Global Warming science hen one can prove anything. Of all the folks I knew in the military, they boldly against homosexuals openly serving, few were just complacent.  How about we prove homosexuality is normal then move on to repeal DADT.

          • How about you prove it isn’t and then we won’t.

          • “Bruce McQuain:
            May 12, 2010 at 17:45
            How about you prove it isn’t and then we won’t.”
             
            That’s your comeback?  Come on, the fictitious Mr. Spock character could have had a good answer.
             
            You didn’t have an answer because there isn’t one. While this is being forced down the peoples throats(no pun) the core issue isn’t being discussed is can a person  be born gay? If you ask a liberal the answer will Yes, you ask any one else the answers no. Politics play a big role in this.

          • Politics play a big role?

            Is that what drives you?

            How about common sense?

            Tell me when you chose to be heterosexual. You should know. If this is all about choosing, you must have decided sometime in your life, “by George I’m going to like girls”. When was that?

          • Choosing has nothing to do with it.  The issue is that the nature of homosexual men is inherently disruptive to social structures set up by heterosexual men, particularly in the sort of high-stress environment the military is exposed to.
             
            This is yet another case of the liberal mind deciding it knows better than all the previous generations of humanity combined.  It’s idiotic and self-defeating.

          • “The issue is that the nature of homosexual men is inherently disruptive to social structures set up by heterosexual men”
            And the nature of men in their late teens and early 20′s is inherently disruptive to many social structures set up by men who are older.  The nature of a lot of men in this age range is inherently disruptive to almost everything if you let them get away with it.
             
            Overall – My gut says there’s a lot of stereotyping going on concerning homosexual behaviors as the foundation to objections to scraping DADT.  Having said that, it points out an illustrative example of a problem the military will have to overcome, mostly from males, that they don’t want to be in confined quarters with “one of them”.  A problem most likely to be encountered during induction since the vets in many cases admit they didn’t like it at first but eventually got to the point where they felt it didn’t matter.  Clearly for those who had an objection, and overcame it, it was “for real” experience in the service that was a factor, which inductees don’t have yet.
            The upshot to that point being, you’ll lose potentially good soldiers right up front who can’t get around the idea they are serving with homosexuals, as opposed to losing the troopers who are good soldiers AND gay.
             
            Regarding unwanted sexual advances, it’s covered by UCMJ.  It’s a fact of life that homosexuals exist, they don’t ‘choose’ to be homosexual, and at random they make as good (or as poor) soldiers as any random heterosexual recruit will.  I’m having a hard time justifying throwing them out of the service just because other people don’t like their choice of bunk buddies and can’t stand to think of what they’re doing behind closed doors in their bedrooms.   I know plenty of heterosexual people who’s bedroom habits are not on my list of things I need to concern myself with, I’m not sure why people spend time worrying about homosexuals when they aren’t equally worried about whether or not their hetero buddies are committing ‘sodomy’ according to statue or scripture while dressing up as Eva and Adolf in jack boots and Fritz helmets on the weekend.
             
            Scrap it, it won’t turn the military into semi-naked boa and lame combat boot wearing companies on dress parade.

          • If you ask a liberal the answer will Yes, you ask any one else the answers no. Politics play a big role in this.

            Huh…
             
            Hey Bruce…  Did you know I was a liberal?
             
            B1, you twatwaffle, politics plays NO part in this.  If you absolutely rule out that someone can be “Born Gay”, then you are telling me that millions of people actively choose a lifestyle that causes ridicule, hatred, and number of other lovely things (Like random assaults because you look like a pretty-boy).
             
            And if you actually think THAT, then you’re dumber than I thought you were.  And that’s one hell of an accomplishment.

  • I’ve come to the conclusion over time that the people who want DADT repealed as a matter of social justice aren’t going to like what they get once whatever comes after is implemented.
    DADT itself was supposed to be a big pro-gay thing that allowed homosexuals to serve and it’s been turned into a symbol of the ultimate discriminatory evil.
    I just can’t see homosexuals serving openly without being subject to limitations on career field and assignments that are far more restrictive than those experienced by women.     If I’m right, what that’s going to mean is that we’ll go from DADT where homosexuals are assigned in an orientation-blind way to any job according to their ability and desire, to a situation where homosexuals are strictly limited in where they are allowed to serve.
    I’m not saying a thing about my preferences, just what I see happening.

  • If sexual orientation is irrelevant to serving, then opposite sexes should share barracks, showers, etc.

    No?

    But I’m being superficial. There is something else here that no one is willing to talk about, so I guess it falls to me to bring it up. While homosexuality might be neither here nor there when it comes to individual soldiers, what happens if and when a “gay culture” develops in the military? And I’m not talking about just the gay soldiers hanging out and eating at the same table in the mess hall. I’m talking about a gay culture that develops in the command structure.

    Now, someone might ask how that is different from a “heterosexual culture,” and aren’t these things all equal in our wonderful modern world. My answer would be that it’s not the same, that there is always going to be a strong difference between the main culture, which is not all that weighted toward a sexual question, and a very distinct sort of sub-culture that absolutely hinges on a sexual question, and that these differences, not to put it too bluntly, are real differences of kind, and at that level no longer just about the meaningless term “preferences.”

    An example of gay subculture wreaking considerable havoc inside a major societal institution is the one that developed inside the Catholic Church. This became a particular problem at seminaries, and I can retrieve some serious discussions of that if anyone is interested.

    So, I think that Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is, by all appearances, an O.K. policy, if not a perfect one. It doesn’t ask too much, but it carries an explicit limit, for the purposes of good order in the military, on the expression of a particular form of sexuality.

    Political correctness has stifled real and serious explorations of this subject, and I think that military people do their own cherished institution a disservice by falling prey to “Oh that’s something we don’t need to talk about.”

    The American military is not to be trifled with, and its culture and what that culture means is very important. There are some very bizarre elements that are a part of gay subculture, and I don’t think that they should be waved off or explained away as not part of the discussion.

    • Fine. Talk about it. But don’t discount the “military culture” in which it must try to plant itself. That’s the same culture that has made a plus of integration of both women and blacks by challenging them to be the best military person they can be. It’s not just a slogan, McP.

      • I’m not sure that the integration of women is a good example, at least not until recently.    I’ve not argued that women should be in the infantry or that our average smaller size isn’t a legitimate issue, but until the present conflict in Iraq there was a distinct message to women that they weren’t full participants.    I think that has changed on account of there being no safe, behind the lines, place for support troops anymore and so we’ve finally stopped having a complete cow at the notion of women in harm’s way.    Its just not possible to keep women out of combat, even if they are still barred from combat roles.     No more Private Benjamin, right?     Now we have the Lionesses and Sgt Hester.
        I think that there was a good chance for “military culture” to absorb homosexuals in that sort of mushy zone where NCOs get things done and there is room for elements to shift and move and find order that works… exactly the “culture” part.     I think there was at least a chance for DADT to segway into Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Care and sort yourselves out.
        I’m expecting that repealing DADT will most likely result in brittle regulation, much like “integrating” women resulted in Congress demanding that they be protected from actually being soldiers.
         

      • Being a woman and being black isn’t a behavior.

        It is not correct that “sexual preference” is nothing more than an individual’s choice between two norms.

        They are not both norms. We live in a very tolerant society that has learned to deal with homosexuality. Even the Catholic Church acknowledges homosexuality as a steady-state occurrence in society that is not easily traced to a cause. It is certainly nothing so uncomplicated as a “preference.”

        Political correctness is not a good standard for action.

        • This has nothing to do with political correctness. It’s simply a nod to the fact that gays have as much of a right to serve as do others, have been since the country was founded and should be able to do so without hiding it. And officers, who don’t want to see good soldiers go just because they’re gay, don’t have to compromise their integrity by pretending they don’t know what they know.

          And I certainly don’t buy into the notion that homosexuality is a preference. If it is, I certainly missed that point in my life when I had to choose.

          • This issue is saturated with political correctness. People walk on eggshells around it. First, because they don’t want gay activists screaming in their faces. Second, because they are very uncomfortable about it. I’ve seen this over and over again and live in a town where the punk mayor sprung “gay marriage” on the residents without advance warning and then the activists went to work on anyone who objected.

            The term “sexual preference” isn’t my term. It’s the politically correct term, the preferred term, if I may be so bold.

            Now, with that out of the way, the phenomenology (if I may put it formally and objectively) of homosexuality is nothing so benign as “just because they are gay.” That’s the big lie that comes in the politically correct shell.

            “Don’t ask, don’t tell” is a “meet your sincere desire to serve halfway” measure that attempts to consider the individual separate from the problematic sexual practice. I think it’s preferable to the witch hunt standard. But it is itself not unproblematic, and I don’t mean that in the way you are seeing it as problematic.

            But the assumption of your argument is that homosexuality does not present a problem, or at least that it is not an insurmountable problem, to military order.

            And my reaction is, from observing the politics surrounding the gay movement, which are tied in with gay culture, and ultimately related to what I’m politely calling the phenomenology of homosexuality, that I wouldn’t make that bet.

            It’s a much more complicated matter than “just because they are gay.”

          • It has nothing to do with PC. It has everything to do with allowing those who want to serve their country honorably and to be honest about who they are to do so.

            It’s a much more complicated matter than “just because they are gay.”

            Is it? Well why don’t you let those in the military work it out?

          • Yes, it is.

            You’re convincing me that you haven’t really thought about this issue, but rather that your mood changed about it.

            This can happen when the reductive element of libertarian thinking ignores everything but the predicate that sets a particular reduction off in the first place.

          • Heh … keep ignoring those questions and attempting diversion, Martin – it’s really strengthening your argument.

            Here – this is from someone who just returned from Iraq (and yes, I happen to know him). Answer him:

            I’m a Reservist, back from Iraq in January. Not saying who or where, but I’ve served with openly gay/lesbian Soldiers and NO ONE CARED. You’re not allowed to engage in sex on duty. Hetero OR Homo. It’s a non-issue. I’m an NCO so I share my quarters and would’ve had not the slightest issue sharing quarters with any of the gays I’ve known of. It’s not an issue.

            There are two sorts of Soldiers – not straight and gay, but shitbags, and squared away Soldiers. And that’s all anyone I’ve served with gave a rat’s tiny hiney about. We were working a lot of 18+ hour days keeping our choppers flying – didn’t leave a lot of time for gay or straight nonsense – and I’d imagine it’d be more prevalent in a support unit like ours than in an Infantry unit where they’re even busier.

            Never been part of a unit that cared. For those of you who are being all ‘Regulation Charlie’ and yelling at Uncle Jimbo and the rest for this one, how many regulations did YOU regularly violate during your career? I’d wager there’s an awful lot of ‘em.

            I think it should be repealed. It allows people to be open about who they are. It does NOT allow them to push their sexuality on someone else, or engage in sex on duty any more than other Soldiers are allowed to.

            That’s my experience as well. Other than the fringes, the big middle just doesn’t really care – at all. That’s also has driven my thinking on the issue not some “reductive element of libertarian thinking”. Actual, real, “I was there” experience – just like the Soldier above.

            So what’s your experience in all of this, Martin?

          • Yes, a nice testimonial. And I’m sure that your friend polled everyone he served with and in all the units he had contact with. As I’m sure you did while you served. But that’s not the point. The policy restrains the matter, whether or not “no one cared.”

            And are you suggesting that I would have to have served in the military with gay people to draw conclusions about the potential for difficulty? No, you wouldn’t try to claim that someone couldn’t understand the special demands of military service and understand how open homosexuality could complicate that.

            I follow issues and I follow people. I pay attention to culture. With all due respect to your impressive service, which I respect and appreciate, I think it is you who does not understand this issue.

          • I’m asking how you can stipulate how the military culture will react to the repeal of DADT if you don’t actually have any experience within that culture?

            I know what’s going on in the military (I follow issues). I’ve talked to any number of people over the years about this issue (I follow people). I’ve watched the attitude change – dramatically (I pay attention to culture). We’ve grown up in the military. And apparently we understand “the problem” much better than you appear too. To most of us, as demonstrated by that testimonial, it’s a non-issue. His point about the “types” of soldiers is so true that I laughed outloud when I saw it – dead on. I don’t care who you love if you are squared away and do your freakin’ job – period.

          • ” You’re not allowed to engage in sex on duty. Hetero OR Homo. It’s a non-issue.”
             
            Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha
             
            good one
             
            ok, back to the real world now, where female military members have their pregnancy rates spike every time they go on deployment

          • You understand, Rollory, that those women are getting knocked up while off duty, right?  That they aren’t getting boned while on watch?  I mean, you ARE aware that being on “Active Duty” doesn’t actually mean that you’re on duty 24/7, right?

          • “that those women are getting knocked up while off duty, right?”

            And you know that because….?
            Those women are part of their units 24/7.  On a ship or in Iraq/Afstan it is irrelevant whether you are on or off duty. This is not a civilian job where there is a clear and definite division between work and home. Also, being pregnant still causes problems no matter where or when it was caused. Sexual activity between a subordinate and a superior is problematic and illegal on or off duty.

          • Yeah right. Again the modern homosexual movement will be used as a political vehicle to silencing any opposition.
             
            Again, show us the science that homosexuality is normal…it’s not asking much.

          • Well tell me – when did you choose to be heterosexual? Heh … yeah, you didn’t did you?

            Figure it out.

          • Again, show us the science that homosexuality is normal…it’s not asking much.

            Show me the “science” that ice cream is delicious.  Seriously, what does this mean? That’s not asking much.
            I DISAGREE WITH YOU!  RESPOND USING SCIENCE!!!!!

          • Gay is a behavior not a people?

          • It is an orientation – just like you have.

          • You say orientation, I say mental illness.

          • Of course you do – you wouldn’t be able to deny them their right to serve with a clear conscience if you didn’t.

          • “that gays have as much of a right to serve as do others”

            When did serving in the military become a right?

          • Gee – most of us understand that’s a figure of speech.

      • Its a fallacious argument to compare homosexuality, a perverted behavior with genetic underpinnings, to immutable charachteristics of black skin or femal gender. Apples and oranges. It is disingenuous to usurp women’s lib or civil rights as a parallel fight.

        • Who made the comparison with women’s lib or civil rights? I simply pointed to the fact that the military had handled the integration of women and blacks (after all the similar arguments you’re making now had been made) and survived them quite well thank you very much.

          How is it that all other NATO countries have managed to integrate open gays into their military? And Israel? Are their gay somehow more special than ours? Is there something about their ability to see past a person’s sexual orientation that you can’t manage? Anyone want to make the argument that Israel’s armed forces are second rate?

      • Comparing homosexuality to gender or skin color doesn’t fly because it’s “behavior” compared to skin pigmentation.  And what about solders who don’t agree with homosexuality as “normal” will they be ran out of service as a bigot? I can see this will open up a whole can of worms.

        • Its an orientation, it isn’t a “behavior”.

          For those not with the program, they’ll most likely be treated just like those who wouldn’t accept integration. My guess is it will be a huge yawn when it finally happens.

          • Okay Bruce, Is homosexuality a behavior because please don’t mince words here. Comparing a person who is born black  which is a difference of skin pigmentation to a white person. that wouldn’t be orientations would it Bruce?

          • I’m not denying skin pigmentation is different than sexual orientation, I’m disputing your claim that homosexuality is a “behavior”. I assume you can figure out the difference.

  • Gays and lesbians who choose to serve will do so not because of who they love, but because of WHAT they love.

    • What concerns me is not those who want to serve <b>that</b> which they love, rather the dishonest activist with a chip on their shoulder seeking to make a point.  Irrespective of what the national mood is, the media is yearning for yet another excuse to blame the military for… everything.
      It is a tight rope,  we have volumes of evidence of radical gay activism, as well as of millions of homosexuals serving  silently but honorably.
      As Bruce acknowledges, revisions to the UCMJ will have to be very well thought out.  DADT to DMIAI (Dont Make It An Issue).

      • It just dawned on me that a repeal of DADT will necessarily upset civil libertarians.  Non-fraternization regulations will have to be beefed up and have to be enforced.  A heterosexual CO/subordinate relationship can wreck havoc on a battalion,  just imagine if they are living in the same barracks.

  • “If I thought it would seriously effect readiness, I’d probably oppose it”

    Probably, Probably?

    Plus ‘seriously’?

    Wow, talk about weasel words.

    • OK, I don’t think it will effect readiness – clear enough?

      • I don’t think it will affect readiness either.
         
        I just think that those up in arms about this (as opposed to those saying “Sure, why not?”) aren’t going to like what they get when they get what they want.

      • Ok so how is DADT effecting readiness now?  If it’s not, what’s the issue?
        If this is all about ‘dumb’ policies, well, heck there’s probably plenty of others that rate higher.

        • Ok so how is DADT effecting readiness now?  If it’s not, what’s the issue?
           
          I’ve never served, but I’ll take a shot at that anyhow…
          The issue I see, is that homosexuals that have and continue to prove their honorable service are “outed” by either their own hand or by others – are then summarily discharged.  Not only taking away their valuable skills from those for whom they serve for and with, but also costing the taxpayers mega-cash.
          The taxpayer’s have paid thousands if not millions to train some of these people only to see their investment cast away over something as petty as their preference of sexual partners – nothing more.
          There are countless examples of homosexuals who have been discharged not because they threatened cohesion or unity – many with testimony from their commanders and fellow soldiers in support – but because of some silly, outdated DADT.
           
          For me, it just makes for good fiscal policy.
           
          Cheers.

          • The ends don’t justify the means. Just because its good fiscal policy doesn’t mean moral truths should be discarded. That is what is wrong with this administration, and this country. Just because it sounds good doesn’t make it so.

            Why have any honor code at all?

            Its just that you want to force others to your point of view that homosexuality is acceptable, and its not. You can pass laws to try to hurt people who disagree with you or even inflitrate the military, but folks as a whole don’t buy it.

          • What rights of yours are violated by a gay person serving his country?

          • Its just that you want to Its just that you want to force others to your point of view that homosexuality is acceptable, and its not. You can pass laws to try to hurt people who disagree with you or even inflitrate the military, but folks as a whole don’t buy it.
             
            We’ve had laws on the books against discrimination now for ages.  It is illegal for employers, including the federal government – the largest employer, to disregard applicants on the basis of their sexual orientation.  I don’t see how applying the same standards to the military forces “my point of view” any more than not allowing a gay person to work for the DoJ would.
            The only question is are they able to do the job.  And after careful consideration and input from very knowledgeable people, I have come to the conclusion that they are fully capable.
             
            If you don’t think that gays should be allowed in the military on grounds of morality, then you most likely don’t think that they should be allowed in any position for the government.
            And that means you are not considering their ability to do the job in your formation of your opinion.
             
            And that’s sad.

  • My biggest worry is that when someone is aloud to say I am gay (which they should be able to say) someone else (say a stick Christianist (is that a word?)) should be aloud to say they do not believe in homosexuality.  That is not what will happen. The gay person will be able to say I am gay and any who says they do not believe in it will be punished.

    • Exactly – the military as a whole has been caught off gaurd with myopia. They haven’t yet seen what it is yet: Saul Alinsky and leftist McCarythism infiltrating the finest fighting machine in the world. People have bogged themselves down with silly pro quid pro debates, but just like civilian life, once the door is opened other leftist and homosexual agendas will rally forth. It always does.

      • Well thank god we don’t let the Homos serve openly…  I mean, if we did that, they might go all “Gay Rage” on us and shoot up an army post…  Oh, wait, that was a straight dude.
         
        Seriously, Nadon…  You have some serious issue, and I really think you should work on those before you talk any more.  Maybe you should go make up with your boyfriend or something, because you obviously have some anger.  Did he forget your anniversary or something?  is that what this is?
         
        All gays aren’t like him, dude.  Honest.

        • Let’s be real. The “dude” that shot up the army post as you described did because of this (ah-hem) religious hatred of the country, not because he’s gay. So don’t compare apples to oranges and grow up while your at it.

          • Tell you what, Billy-Bob…  I’ll grow up when you cease to be a bass-ackwards moron.
             
            I consider sex outside of marriage to be immoral, but not only do civilians do it all. The. Time. But I’m pretty sure it isn’t unheard of in the millitary, either.
             
            And unlike sexual orientation, people choose to screw before (or outside the bonds of) marriage.
             
            So get the hell of your High Horse of Stupidity, and make an argument that doesn’t consist of entirely of “Teh Gheys r bad!!1!!!11!eleventy”.  I’d remind you that a crap-load of people thought blacks were an inferior race back when the services got Integrated, and they were wrong too.

  • If, according to the petition, “very little will actually change” with the repeal of “Don’t Ask,”  why change it?

    It’s sort of like what happened to schools.  In that case the focus became on making kids feel good about themselves instead of teaching them anything.  Look where that lead us.

    In this case you want soldiers to feel good about themselves.  I am sure that 4-5% feeling really good about themselves is important to you, but in the end that is not what the military is here to do.  
     

  • I’ve also come to understand that it isn’t going to be the activists or those who want to flaunt their homosexuality who are going to seek to serve their country.

    That dynamic changes when we need to muster a conscripted army.  There will be people who don’t want to be there, don’t mind being disruptive, and don’t have any future career concerns. 

    • There will be people who don’t want to be there, don’t mind being disruptive, and don’t have any future career concerns.
      Isn’t that the case with anyone in a conscripted army?

      • Did I say it wasn’t?

        Don’t really get your point other than attempting to ridicule my point by implying it was a generalized statement.  

        If you must have it explained, which I doubt, Bruce was using the attitude of a volunteer and possibly career minded military person as part of the argument to dismiss concerns gays in the military.  I was pointing out that conscripted military persons would not necessarily share that attitude. 

        • Relax, man.
          Your brief comment gave no other reason than to believe it was a generalized statement – as was mine.
           
          However, if you would like to explore this further, it would make for a good discussion.
           
          Bruce was using the attitude of a volunteer and possibly career minded military person as part of the argument to dismiss concerns gays in the military.  I was pointing out that conscripted military persons would not necessarily share that attitude.
          And they wouldn’t necessarily share that attitude with regards to blacks, women, Hispanics, or whatever…
           
          Do you think, however, that the volunteer professionals that would make up a good portion of the enlisted and all of the NCOs and officers would tolerate such disruptive behavior?
           
          I feel that in this day and age, with the soviets gone and China having more interest in gaining advantage via economic means rather than military, that a need for a conscript army is highly unlikely and even undesirable.  So to fashion major policy to accommodate a very unlikely scenario would be unwise.
           
          You?
           
          Cheers.
           

          • And they wouldn’t necessarily share that attitude with regards to blacks, women, Hispanics, or whatever…
             
            Since racial and gender diversity have been applied to the military, how many wars have we fought where our military resources didn’t far exceed what was expended?  In other words, how many wars have we fought where maybe we soaked up the cost of disruption and ignored its impact.  Not saying racism is justified, but imposing utopia doesn’t come free.
             
            Not saying my above point is true.  But just saying we have a diverse military doesn’t mean the opposite is automatically true either.
             
            Do you think, however, that the volunteer professionals that would make up a good portion of the enlisted and all of the NCOs and officers would tolerate such disruptive behavior?
             
            That goes back to my earlier response, they could handle it, but if we’re in a conflict where conscription is required should they be wasting their time?
             
            I feel that in this day and age, with the soviets gone and China having more interest in gaining advantage via economic means rather than military, that a need for a conscript army is highly unlikely and even undesirable.  So to fashion major policy to accommodate a very unlikely scenario would be unwise.
             
             
            And you’re almost guaranteed to never get the war you expect.  The decision we make now could be with us in 20 years and all bets are off.  As for China, their industrialization directly benefits their military prowess.  Its not contrary to gaining military advantage in the least.
             
            So if we are in a real conflict were we need to conscript or lose war, its because if we lose we’ll lose it all.  And losing a war to anyone but the US sucks.  It sucks really really hard.  And more injustice will be heaped on the average gay and not gay person than being excluded from of the military.

    • That was the case when we had a draft army with supposedly no gays – what’s your point?

      • Cause DADT was the dominant social norm not just in the military in most places up until the mid 80′s to mid-90′s timeframe.
         
        In fact, when the Clinton Administration implemented DADT, they were chided for implementing business as usual.
         
         
        And those that didn’t observe DADT in a vocal and visible way were still put in service often before then?

  • The sum total of my military experience is 6 weeks on an active duty summer ‘cruise’ aboard an LST as a midshipman when I was in NROTC, summer of 83.  There were gay sailors aboard that ship, and nobody was confused about that fact.  It’s also the case that nobody gave an owl fart in a tornado.
    In 1983.
    I really don’t think that it’s going to impact readiness.

    • A friend who is a Gunny Sgt in the Marines told me once “Trust me, there are gays here, and only the completely retarded don’t know who they are.”  He then proceeded to tell me that no one who cared about silly things like winning wars and surviving a firefight gave a rat’s ass who was gay – if they did their job, no one was going to say a thing about where what got stuck.

      • Why have any code of honor at all then? As long as the guy next to you is doing his J-O-B its fine that he is a triple felon, a plogymist, a pedophile, etc. Rght?

        But you know its not okay at all, but your intent is to punish people and force them to think that homosexuals belong in the normal group not the undesirable sicko group. This is all about forcing people to change their perceptions over what they know to be a wrong, distorted behavior.

        • Those are all violations of the law, aren’t they? In case you haven’t noticed, being gay isn’t. And a convicted felon or convicted pedophile won’t qualify to enter the military, will they?

          • What?  Being gay is committing an act specifically against the UCMJ, otherwise you’re not gay.

          • Don2, I’ll use small words, so you understand.
             
            It is illegal in the US, to engage in pedophilia.  It is also not legal to be a practicing polygamist.   It is not, in any state of the Union, illegal to be actively gay.

        • What do you supposed DADT encourages just by its existence, speaking of honor? It requires one side to lie and the other to pretend what they know they don’t know if they want to hold on to a good soldier who happens to be gay. This is you idea of “honor”?

          • Well, duh…  Gotta keep them queers in their place, don’t you know…

          • Scott, we’re talking about the UCMJ but otherwise you’re spot on……..

  • Anyone who thinks this will not have a negative impact on the military is living in a fool’s paradise.

    Wait until the gay activists and their lawyers get busy.

    • Wait until the gay activists and their lawyers get busy.
      I just have to laugh at this.  I mean, what do you think these gay activists and their lawyers are going to do?
      Force the army to redecorate the barracks with avant garde artwork?  Serve soft cheese and white wine in the mess hall?  Turn the morning bugle call into a show tune…
      I feel pretty,
      Oh, so pretty,
      I feel pretty and witty and bright!
      And I pity
      Any girl who isn’t me tonight.

       
      What, exactly?  I must know.
       
      Cheers.

      • That might be one of the funniest things I’ve read on here in a LONG time.

        • Ha ha, having men who have anal intercouse in the military is such an amusing, silly thing to object to. Let’s laugh about it somemore shall we? I mean afterall, what’s morality? What an old fashioned outdated concept. Obama is cool – and he approves! I can’t wait to sell the Army a new unicorn.

          • Let’s laugh about it somemore shall we?
             
            Okay!!
            Have you heard the one about the chicken farmer and the drill sergeant?  ‘Cause that’s funny as hell.

          • Hey Nadon…  Have you heard the joke they don’t tell gay people?

      • Well duh! You think for a second gays and their pinko lawyers are going after free thinking people who don’t believe homosexuality is normal? What the modern gay movement is a politician vehicle to silence any opposition. So I think homosexuality isn’t normal in the military then I get run out for discrimination and general discharge. That is the larger issue at hand.
         
        How about your declare to the world the revelation of science which confirms homosexuality is normal…3…2…1…

        • How about you declare to the world the revelation of science which says something which has existed as long as humanity isn’t? Actually, don’t even bother to go on that fool’s errand, because it doesn’t matter. What matters is 1) is it illegal (answer: no) and 2) does it detract from their ability to do the job (answer: no again).

          Disapprove all you like. But unless you can present some actual practical objections (translation: something more than “Ewwwww! Sodomites! Unclean! Unclean!”) it’s just sitting in a corner with your face scrunched up. Where you’ve set your Ick Threshold is completely irrelevant.

  • At least gays won’t get pregnant.

    Having had some experience as an enlisted man, I have zero confidence in the system’s ability or willingness to protect me from sexual harassment from officers like Eric Massa. On the contrary, I expect them to act more like the Catholic church, where protecting the organization comes first. 

    • Massa was a molesting subordinates prior to DADT, which means that the penalties for being gay alone were far harsher than post-1993.  The penalties for what he did are still the same  as far as I know (I can think of at least 3 violations of the UCMJ).  Yet Massa still managed to be predator.  Repealing the ban or leaving it in place will not change this, enforcing the UCMJ will.  If you think I want predators like Massa wearing the uniform than you are sadly mistaken.  I care not what floats their boat, if they touch anyone without permission or fraternize with subordinates they need to be punished.  Period.

  • That dynamic changes when we need to muster a conscripted army.  There will be people who don’t want to be there, don’t mind being disruptive, and don’t have any future career concerns.
    Bingo. I am suspicious of “only wonderful, dedicated folks will serve” arguments.  That’s not true for heteros and I have no reason to believe it will be true of gays. The military is full of dirt bags. It’s just easier to hold them accountable in the armed forces because the rules allow us to kick them out when they cause problems. That won’t get easier when we introduce yet another protected class of folks into an organization that depends upon suppressing individualism for the sake of effectiveness.
    I also find it ludicrous to assume that there won’t be huge PC considerations wrapped around this just as there have been with other social justice measures in which the military is expected to do what society at large can’t and won’t do.
    Anyone who thinks women are treated just the same as men in the military is smoking crack. They aren’t.
    That’s not to say that there aren’t many fine, professional women in the military. I know many of them. But there are also dirtbags who use their status as members of a protected class to get away with things men can’t. That’s a problem and we ought to face it. We ought to be tracking non-deployability rates caused by pregnancy but we don’t anymore b/c that became a political football.
    Sexual misconduct is a real problem now and men and women don’t even live in the same quarters. But again, we can’t say that because we are bigots for facing facts? It’s not just “those awful men” (whom female Congresscritters like Jane Harmon are constantly accusing of producing “an epidemic of rape”). It’s often women who contribute to the problem.
    But I can’t say that either or I’m sexist?
    *sigh*

    • I just wonder how every NATO army but Turkey have managed it for all these years. Because everyone of them allow openly gay service members. And so does Israel. Go figure.

      • But do you know what the reality is in those NATO militaries vis a vis this issue? Given that in Europe now it is often a crime to criticize homosexuality (or Islam, for that matter), it might even be impossible to get a true reading of the impact on military order. Items like this are simply undiscussable over there, and we would be unlikely to hear about a problem.

        I don’t regard the European standard for anything, with the possible exception of wine, as any kind of exemplar for the U.S. And certainly not anything to do with their militaries.

        • Of course you don’t, because they’re inconvenient to your argument right now. Try Canada then. Fighting right along side us in A’stan. Or Australia. And I noticed you skipped Israel …

          • Argumentum ad populum didn’t convince me that we should have nationalized health care and it’s not going to convince me that we need to reorder the values of our military.

            If that’s the best argument you have, then you don’t have an argument.

          • Values of the military? And what are those, Martin?

          • What, one of the values of our military is “The total number of X Chromosomes in a sexual coupling shall not be an even number”?
             
            Are you HIGH???
             
            How in the hell can you sit there and suggest that DADT (or prohibiting Gays from serving at all, period) is helpful to the Military?  Do you think there aren’t gays NOW?  Do you think people don’t KNOW WHO THEY ARE?  Do you think any of your junior high “oh noes a ghey might see my peepee” BS is even within the same hemisphere as a real, rational argument?

          • A policy can represent a whole series of compromises, Scott. It can be fair. It can take all sorts of things into consideration, even without knowing what all of those things are. So, it’s not necessarily important whether anyone knows or suspects that this or that person in the military is gay. What’s important is that no one asks, and no one tells. Do you get that? It’s a compromise that lets all sorts of people, not just gay people, serve.

          • No, Martin, it really does only affect Gays.
             
            Unless you know Blacks who serve, and people don’t know they are Black so long as they don’t tell anyone, or don’t listen to Rap and HipHop…
             
            DADT forces good and decent people to hide something at some level, and it is something that can be used to ruin a soldier’s good name – fall out of favor, and you’ll get dishonorably discharged.
             
            DADT is not sound policy.  It doesn’t actually allow gays to serve, it just lets them hang around so long as they play pretend really well.  It’s disgusting, and it goes against common decency.
             
            Unless you think gays are evil for being gay, in which case that’s an entirely different conversation and I’m afraid it ends with me calling you some very unflattering names.

          • @Scott Jacobs: My conclusions about this subject are based on observation and evaluation, not on ingrained prejudice. But, that said, prejudgements passed along by culture — prejudices — are not by necessity wrong. Hayek is very strong on this question when he writes about the concentrated knowledge that is embedded in traditions, which are contructed with judgements that often escape from immediate view.

            Once again, my views on this also coincide with those of the Catholic Church, which is very careful in its explication of natural moral law. And I think that Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is consistent with the Church’s view and it’s consistent with the view of more bible-based denominations.

            But I would describe the development of my views on this as existential and phenomenological, and that they precede my inquiry into the Church’s view, but were clarified by my growing understanding of natural law.

            Now, if you want to call me names over that, then you will have taken a position contrary to what I’ve always regarded as the one of mutual respect between the two of us here at McQ’s ranch, which I think would be regrettable.

    • Bingo. I am suspicious of “only wonderful, dedicated folks will serve” arguments.
       
      Well good for you Cassandra!!  You should be suspicious of “only wonderful, dedicated folks will serve” arguments.
      Of course, however, I haven’t seen any “only wonderful, dedicated folks will serve” arguments lately.  But that shouldn’t stop you from being suspicious.
      After all, it’s much easier to erect strawmen to destroy.
       
      And don’t worry about being labeled a sexist.  The military was obviously perfect before they allowed women to serve.
       
      I long for the heady days of the old military disciplines.
      Rum, sodomy, and the lash… And the like…
      But purely heterosexual sodomy, of course.  ‘Cause, …not that there’s anything wrong with that.

      • I long for the heady days of the old military disciplines.
        Rum, sodomy, and the lash… And the like…
        But purely heterosexual sodomy, of course.  ‘Cause, …not that there’s anything wrong with that.

        Remember…  It’s only gay if your balls touch…

    • All the “well thought out” posts about abilities and rights, with which I do not disagree only one spoke of logistics of facilities. If you would not like this heterosexual male showering with your wife or daughter, then you should not force others to be subjected to the shower tree with those who might find me “stimulating”  (although I’m getting old and anything might be good)..but I digress. The facts are there isn’t enough money to have individual showers and heads for all-officers and chiefs excluded. It is not about can gays fight it is can we accomodate ones “rights” by infringing on anothers?

      • Yeah, because you know I bet when I go to the gym and shower off afterwards with a bunch of guys in there that not one of them is probably gay, huh?

        • Gay guys at the gym tend not to proclaim they’re gay in the shower, which is why you don’t know who is and who isn’t.    Right?
           
          I still favor Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Care.    But if sexuality is going to be ignored then it needs to be ignored.     I don’t think that “gays serving openly” is going to follow DADTDC.     I think that people are going to *care* and it’s going to be in writing… because any time Congress gets their mitts in something, that’s what happens.

  • I spent 20 years on active duty including two combat tours and I don’t believe we need open homosexuality in the armed forces.
    As 13 year old cadet at Culver Military Academy, I woke up at 2:00 AM to find a man sitting on my bed. There was no question what he wanted.  I told him that the guy he was looking for had moved to the end of the hall where three first classmen (seniors) roomed.  Rumor had it he left the third floor of the main barracks without the benefit of the stairs.
    The problem is in the Navy where commissioned and petty officers on ships have much more autonomy than do their counterparts in land forces.  They tend to “nest up” and use the chain of command to prey on young enlisted men.
    Overall, I doubt the benefits outweigh the costs.  Of course, this is a Congressional decision, not an executive one.
    Don’t ask, don’t tell is just a Clinton era policy to avoid the issue.  Repealing DADT won’t allow gays to serve in the military.  It will allow commanders to ask if a member of the armed services is gay.  If he admits it, he’s discharged.  If he lies and is later caught, he can be charged with making a false official statement, punished and then discharged. 

    Congress must change the UCMJ to remove homosexuality as an offense.  In a highly charged election year, good luck with that.

  • Bruce, thank you for this.  I almost wish I hadn’t given up blogging now just to post about this!  Has Dale or Michael taken a position on this matter?  Regardless, I enjoy all 3 of you in the podcasts.  I always listen the day after so never get a chance to call in but I am still a big fan.

    • This has been a long time coming and as I said, John, I’ve changed my mind over the years. One of the things people don’t realize, and I did 18 years in the reserves, is they and the NG have a good number of gays in them and always have. And, for the most part, it’s not secret and, even more pointedly, no one cares. Show up on time, do you job and do it well, lean to “soldier” and amazingly everything else seems to take care of itself. Right now, serving gays (in Reserve and NG units) are all over A’stan and Iraq.

      In answer to your question, I believe Dale and I’m not sure about Michael, but I will leave it to them to speak out if they so choose.

      • Well I do appreciate it, Bruce.  Honestly it wouldn’t matter to me if you or the others did support DADT, I’d strongly disagree but remain a big fan of the podcast.  You guys aren’t extreme social cons and frankly have the best commentary on politics around IMO.

        Ironically I myself underwent a change of opinion regarding DADT as well.  Back in 1993 I hated it and was angry about it but reluctantly agreed with General Powell’s recommendations because I believed then and still do that the mission of the military comes first.  It was a combination of things that changed my mind:  the haphazard way this ban was enforced (discharges go up in peacetime and down in wartime including cases of known gays), the arguments for DADT (especially “unit cohesion”) proved to be demonstrably flawed, the growing acceptance of society-at-large on the matter (or perhaps a “who cares?” attitude is more apt), the experience of militaries of our closest allies in ending their own similar bans, etc.  I believe the time is right.

  • I’ve also come to understand that it isn’t going to be the activists or those who want to flaunt their homosexuality who are going to seek to serve their country.

    Surely you jest.

    • Why would they? They’ve freakin’ won their point. This isn’t really that hard to figure out if you actually think about it.

    • The activists and the flaunters wouldn’t survive then normal, chew you up and spit you out nature of boot.  They just wouldn’t make it.

  • I just wonder how every NATO army but Turkey have managed it for all these years. Because everyone of them allow openly gay service members. And so does Israel. Go figure.

    And you think the other NATO armies are a force to be reckoned with which we really ought to emulate, do you? Yeah, we should be more like the German army, with their stunning service record and skill in combat. Right.

    • And you think the other NATO armies are a force to be reckoned with which we really ought to emulate, do you? Yeah, we should be more like the German army, with their stunning service record and skill in combat. Right.
       
      And you think that US forces are a force to be reckoned with because it incorporates DADT, do you?
      That shows little respect for our men and women in uniform.  Truth is, they know they serve with homosexuals, and it doesn’t have any effect on their performance.

      • Pogue:
        How much combat time do you have?  Zero.

        • I have plenty – what’s your point, Arch?

        • How much combat time do you have?  Zero.
           
          Oh, so that precludes me from having an opinion and joining the debate?  Should the same criteria be made to also preclude those from making policy with regard to the military?
          Like … say … G.W. Bush, Cheney, Obama?
           
           
          I’ve freely admitted to my lack of experience – so I have deferred to others.  And after listening closely, I have come to a thoughtful and reasoned conclusion.

    • Or the Israeli army – I noticed you skipped them. And the Brits, fighting right along side of us in A’stan. Or the Canadians? Or the Aussies? How have they managed, Christopher? Even freakin’ Russia allows gays to serve openly.

      Is your argument really, “well they’re not as good as us and that’s why”?

      Really?

      • Dude, the IDF freaking TERRIFIES me.  They are utter and complete bad-asses.

        • Yeah but the homosexuals didn’t make them “bad asses” unless you find that bad ass good?

      • Well, your move to argumentum ad populum — the bandwagon fallacy — doesn’t work.

        Most of those countries have nationalized health care. It’s not an argument for establishing nationalized health care.

        End of argumentum ad populum.

        This is the U.S. military. Not the Israeli or the Canadian military.

        There are issues to be considered here that do not have anything to do with who felt O.K. serving around gay soldiers and who didn’t. There is a mechanism in place that allows gays to serve that tries not to make an issue of their sexuality, and the total sum of unfairness is that they don’t get to raise the issue either. In other words, it’s a private matter to be kept private. There is nothing wrong with that as a concept or a practice.

        Open service raises fresh issues. These can be political issues and in the most rarefied sense of the term, cultural issues. Both of those can affect order and nothing about an argumentum ad populum mitigates that possibility.

        Homosexuality is problematic in a number of ways, and based on that I would argue that Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is a tolerant, satisfactory, and even generous policy that welcomes service by gays but recognizes that some personal privacy and therefore personal restraint is in order. It allows service with honor, and looks to mitigate potential difficulties.

        • Well, your move to argumentum ad populum — the bandwagon fallacy — doesn’t work.
          Most of those countries have nationalized health care. It’s not an argument for establishing nationalized health care.
          End of argumentum ad populum.
           
          LOL!
          And don’t you know that they put mayonnaise on their french fries?
          If we repeal DADT, does that mean we’ll be putting mayonnaise on our fries???  WTF, dude!?
           
          End of argumentum ad absurdum.

        • Apples and oranges on health care and economic differences with Israel.  What makes necessitates having a ban on openly serving gays here in the United States but not in Israel?  If anything, Israel’s not-so-secret pact with the ultra-Orthodox and the quite hostile part of the world their military is in would make a ban even more relevant there than here.  Yet they still repealed it and seem to be doing fine.

        • That’s pretty weak, McP.

          How have the Israeli’s managed to have one of the most effective (and feared) militaries in the world with gays serving openly? That’s a simple question which points to an example that punctures your argument. Why, instead of all this tap dancing, don’t you address it? If having gays serving openly is such a “bad thing”, wouldn’t it be a “bad thing” in Israel? Australia? etc?

          As to your “fresh issues” – they’re apparently only “fresh” here, aren’t they?

          • First, it may in fact be a bad thing in those militaries. Just because they allow it doesn’t mean we know enough about it to make a judgement. So, there’s no argument there for you either, in lieu of the bandwagon argument.

            Second, the U.S. has a different culture than Israel. And Israel also requires everyone to serve. It’s not an all voluntary force.

            Third, the U.S. makes independent judgements about how it does things based on its traditions and values.

            I would remind you that there are a lot of people who serve in the military who haven’t experienced the enlightenment that you have. They still have very clearly defined, and dare I say Biblical, understanding of what is good and honorable and what is not. That’s not to say that they cannot be as tolerant as the next person, but change that equation so that what they consider to be wrong is elevated with what they consider to be right and you have yourself a problem, my friend.

            And all your unqualified enlightenment about such matters might not be enough to keep those lads re-enlisting and putting their lives on the line, not because they do not love their country and the service, but because they do not recognize it any longer.

          • But it’s not a “bad thing” – that’s the point. And wishing it was otherwise doesn’t make it so. Israel remains a very well trained and potent military and does it with openly serving gays.

            As for my “unqualified enlightenment” – mine comes from actual experience, years of it. My “unqualified” enlightenment comes from actually seeing gays serve when others knew perfectly well who and what they are and had no problem with it.

            If that’s “unqualified”, what does that make your conjecture?

          • Let us guess, when a heard a buffalo run off the cliff the remaining ones should follow?
            Because other nations have socialized medicine, the US should have it  also?
             
            So other nations who adopt such social experimentation should should be forced upon us? Sounds kinda stylish but eventually the fad will disappear.
             
            Your argument isn’t scientific based but consensus.

          • If a proven hypothesis (If Israel allows open gays to serve in the military and Israel has an efficient and well-trained military that has proven itself in combat, then openly gay soldiers haven’t effected Israel’s readiness) isn’t based in “science” then what is it? Australia – same experience. UK, same experience. Canada, same experience. All (but Israel) fighting effectively beside us now in A’stan.

            Other than not liking homosexuals, what – based in science – do you bring to the discussion?

      • The Isrealis have a draft as well and compulsory military service for all.

        So I guess that’s a good comparison.

        The issue is, to me, is DADT effecting readiness NOW?  If not, why change?
        You still have not answered that question.

        • Because, as you point out, it makes no difference – ala Israel. So why keep it? Keeping it means that commanders must enforce the law, even if that means a good soldier slips and we find out about his or her sexual orientation. Most commanders don’t give a rip, but honor and integrity make them duty bound to enforce the “law”. Or they can chuck their honor and integrity out the window and pretend they don’t know in order keep that good soldier on duty. Wouldn’t you just love to be put in that position – even when we know, given the Israeli example, that it’s really a non-issue?

          • “but honor and integrity make them duty bound to enforce the “law”.”
             

            Chucking the law out the window doesn’t seem to have been a problem for some of them if it is a choice between that or their own interests.
            Kelly Flinn, Kara Hultgren, tailhook, B52 crash at Fairchild AFB, etc.

  • I concur.

    However, we must insure that sexuality, whether hetero or homo, does not negatively impact unit cohesion or in any way compromise the command structure long established in military service.  When a distructive force; gay, straight, homophobic, or heterophobic compromises the military’s mission…they should be expunged.  That should be a command decision and “not” for  the courts. A disruptive warrior, regardless of motive, should be dismissed.

    • Absolutely agree RiverRat – and the rules are in place to do that already. Try “conduct prejudicial to the good order of the military” for starters.

  • Gay’s have been serving openly in the Canadian Military for over 17 years… 

    As elsewhere, there had been dire warnings that esprit d’corps, morale, and operational effectiveness would be compromised by a change in policy; but, as elsewhere, NONE of that happened in Canada. 

    At first the  Canadian Forces did not recognize homosexual marriages or extend partner benefits to homosexual couples. but now Full partner benefits are available to all of Canada’s service members, including compassionate leave and partner entitlement to dental care and health care plans as dependents, among other standard benefits.

    Recently a Gay Military Wedding, with both partners in full Military Uniform took place on a Canadian Military Base.

    Patriotic gay and straight Canadians are serving and sacrificing in Afghanistan, alongside American troops, getting the job done. Gay service is no longer an issue in Canada — the standard of conduct for homosexuals serving in the Military is EXACTLY same as for heterosexuals.
     
    And I would posit to the person who made some dumbass comment about women & men serving in the military not sharing bunks and showering together and equating that dynamic to the homo-hetero dynamic in order to justify some bogus reason for NOT repealing DADT  — let me spell it out clearly for you —– THE  ONLY reason straight men and women don’t share accomodations and showers is because straight men can’t seem to keep their dicks to themselves……in other words.. you’re a bunch of poon dogs!
    The hetero male hetero female dyamic  IS NOT the same as the gay male/ straight male dynamic and never will be.  That speaks MORE highly about gay males then it does about hetero males!

    The most comprehensive academic study of homosexuality in a foreign military ever compiled is titled  “Effects of the 1992 Lifting of Restrictions on Gay and Lesbian Service in the Canadian Forces; Appraising the Evidence”. and  it reflects an exhaustive inventory of relevant data and research.

    Key findings:

    * Lifting of restrictions on gay and lesbian service in the Canadian Forces has NOT led to any change in military performance, unit cohesion, or discipline.

    * Self-identified gay, lesbian, and transsexual members of the Canadian Forces contacted for the study describe good working relationships with peers.  * Yes that is right.. Canadian Forces allow TRANSEXUALS to serve… and  I’ll say it again ..the standard of conduct for homosexuals & transexuals  serving in the Military is EXACTLY same as for heterosexuals.

    * The percent of military women who experienced sexual harassment DROPPED 46% AFTER the ban was lifted. While there were several reasons why harassment declined, one factor was that after the ban was lifted women were free to report assaults without fear that they would be accused of being a lesbian.

    * Before Canada lifted its gay ban, a 1985 survey of 6,500 male soldiers found that 62% said that they would refuse to share showers, undress or sleep in the same room as a gay soldier. After the ban was lifted, follow-up studies found NO increase in disciplinary, performance, recruitment, sexual misconduct, or resignation problems.

    * NONE of the 905 assault cases in the Canadian Forces from November, 1992 (when the ban was lifted) until August, 1995 involved gay bashing or could be attributed to the sexual orientation of one of the parties.

    There is NO reason  for the US Military to continue to ban/discriminate against Gays serving OPENLY.
    As for DOMA… well the Australian Defence Force (ADF) offers full same sex partner benefits; and Israel has provided combat death benefits to same sex partners for years; despite the fact that NEITHER country allows same sex marriages to be performed. 

    The study I mentioned can be found here
    http://www.palmcenter.org/press/dadt/releases/study_finds_gays_do_not_undermine_canadian_military_performance

    The United Kingdom, Canada, and Israel transitioned to unrestricted open service policies quickly and WITHOUT problems.

    Regarding retention & recruitment— —Neither the UK Military  nor  the Canadian Military where service is voluntary, have EVER suffered ” any difficulties related to recruitment or training completion rates; recruitment levels are characterized as ‘quite buoyant.’”

    The Canadian Forces have suffered “no resignations (despite previous threats to quit), and no problems with recruitment”.

    Any argument against repealing DADT is without merit and based purely on homophobia and alot of ignorance about gays judging from some of the comments posted here…. and those same bogus arguments against repealing DADT are identical in every manner as those that were voiced when the Military decided to racially integrate.

    DADT will be repealed sooner than later.  The Military won’t suffer. The  impact that will result will prove to be nothing less than positive.

  • Well good for you Cassandra!!  You should be suspicious of “only wonderful, dedicated folks will serve” arguments. Of course, however, I haven’t seen any “only wonderful, dedicated folks will serve” arguments lately. 

    Perhaps you should re-read what Bruce wrote:

    it isn’t going to be the activists or those who want to flaunt their homosexuality who are going to seek to serve their country. Being a Soldier, Sailor, Marine or Airman is a hard, dirty and dangerous job.  Those that choose to serve are not going to do it because of who they love, but simply because want to serve their nation and the military is their chosen method of doing so.
    Bruce may well believe that, but I don’t. People join the military for any number of reasons, not all of them patriotic. I have the utmost respect for the Marine Corps but I would never argue that no one except selfless patriots ever joins the Marines.
    Just as I see no reason to assume all military folks are dedicated patriots who unfailingly put country above self, there is no reason to assume that sexual orientation – in and of  itself – is such an ennobling characteristic that it makes everyone who shares it more patriotic than those around them.
    I just wonder how every NATO army but Turkey have managed it for all these years. Because everyone of them allow openly gay service members. And so does Israel. Go figure.
    And I think we should look at their experiences. But I also think we should look at the differences between our armed forces and theirs.
    Not one of the armies you mention, Bruce, is as large as the United States’ armed forces. And not one of them maintains the same op tempo. Since you mention it, there’s no hard evidence (anymore, at least) that integrating women into the armed forces adversely impacted unit readiness.
    If pregnancy were the only issue associated with fuller integration of women into the armed forces that would be one thing. But it is not. Rape and fraternization are other problems that dramatically increase when women are added to the mix. Advocates of greater female participation are enamored of anecdotal arguments, such as “I wouldn’t do this, therefore it shouldn’t be a problem” or “people who can’t control their sexual urges can’t be trusted with deadly weapons”. As Lex’s own anecdotal experience shows, however, women can and do behave in destructive and irresponsible ways that demonstrably impact unit readiness and morale.
    Lex’s experience aside, decisions about the use of women in the military should be driven by empirical data rather than competing and subjective narratives. His experience rings true, but there is a more objective (and harder to refute) case to be made here – one based on the aggregate behavior of men and women living in close quarters.
    The problem, for women’s advocates, is that the data don’t add up in a way that supports their case for full integration of women into the armed forces:
    Among the competing narratives put forward by the women in the military lobby, something does not quite ring true. The stories are diametrically opposed. If one is accurate it casts doubt upon the others and yet the proponents want us to accept them all at face value.
    Either it is true that these women can defend themselves as well as men both verbally or physically (in which case they should be fully integrated into all branches of the military with no special accommodations) or they cannot even defend themselves against the depredations of some of their stronger male coworkers (in which case they require special protections if they are to be integrated, even in a limited way, into the armed forces).
    Either it is true that men and women can bunk, shower, and defecate in close quarters without causing problems detrimental to the good order and discipline of the command, OR 4 in 10 women who live and work in close quarters with men are being raped and/or sexually harassed.

    They can’t both be true.

    That is, unless Ms. Harmon doesn’t consider rape detrimental to good order and discipline. She can’t, unlike many feminists, have it both ways. She can’t insist 40% of women are being raped and sexually harassed on the job, yet insist integrating women into the armed forces doesn’t have a negative effect on command readiness. That just doesn’t make sense.
    As I pointed out on a prior post on the impact of women on unit readiness, there is tremendous political pressure on DoD *not* to keep track of this sort of thing. I don’t think this “proves” anything, other than that human nature is the eternal constant in human affairs. But then that’s sort of been my point all along – times may have changed but human nature has not.
    I just don’t think it’s quite reasonable to assume that contemporary attitudes towards sex – whether hetero or homosexual – are supportive of the kind of self-restraint needed when folks who are naturally attracted to each other live in close quarters.
    And I think that’s an argument you are ignoring.
     

    • Perhaps you should re-read what Bruce wrote…
       
      Yeah, I don’t read that as, “only wonderful, dedicated folks will serve.”
      McQ and I often have disagreements, but if there is one thing I do know, is that he almost never deals in absolutes.

      • I said activists aren’t the one’s that are going to seek to serve. Why would they? They have nothing to protest or be an activist about – gays would be serving openly in the military. And besides, we’re at war and that’s a dirty, dangerous business which isn’t likely to attract those whose only agenda is attempting to gain gay rights when those rights have been gained. If someone can explain why that’s probably not true, I’d love to hear it.

        In the meantime the UCMJ deals quite explicitly with conduct “unbecoming” or “prejudicial to the good order and discipline of the military”.

        • The UCMJ also deals quite explicitly with servicemembers who make themselves undeployable.
          Are you seriously maintaining that political considerations don’t affect enforcement of the UCMJ? Recently we had a general who had to apologize for stating his intent to enforce the UCMJ in Iraq.
          Hardly the first time. He ran smack up against activism and activism won.

      • but if there is one thing I do know, is that he almost never deals in absolutes.

        http://www.dorktower.com/2005/06/07/comics-archive-689/

        • OK, I have been know to deal in that particular Absolut …

          • And to go completely recursive in this topical off-shoot, that is fine, because you “ALMOST” never deal in absolutes…
             
            Also, I had no idea that they made a cranberry/raspberry juice cocktail to use as a coloring agent for my vodka.  I feel as though I was cheated out of much joy.

  • OK, there were supposed to be all kinds of blockquotes in my prior comment. Apparently I screwed something up.
    At any rate, I don’t happen to have any moral objections whatsoever to homosexuality. Never have.
    I want Congress to look at how this will be implemented b/c of the problems I’ve seen with integrating women into the armed forces. I don’t hate women either, nor do I think they’re any better or worse behaved than men. But the unequal standards applied to women b/c they’re a protected class create some pretty perverse incentives that don’t enhance good order or discipline.

    • CassandraI want Congress to look at how this will be implemented b/c of the problems I’ve seen with integrating women into the armed forces… unequal standards applied to women b/c they’re a protected class create some pretty perverse incentives that don’t enhance good order or discipline.

      While I’m starting to shudder at the thought of Congress doing ANYTHING (I don’t trust that bunch of boobs to tie their own shoelaces without screwing something up for the rest of us), I agree with the rest of the comment: the playing field must be level.  This also applies to sexual harassment, fraternization, and all other aspects of discipline.  While I trust that the vast majority of gay servicemen will behave themselves as well as their straight comrades, I am not interested in seeing newspaper headlines about how the military is discriminating against (for example) a gay officer who is in a relationship with a subordinate, or gay servicemen playing the “gay card” if they are disciplined for some infraction of the UCMJ and other regulations.  By the same token, the military must take steps to ensure that gay servicemen are not subject to abuse or harassment in the same way that steps had to be taken to ensure that blacks and women were not abused when they were integrated into the armed services.*

      At any rate, I’m sure that the military can deal with any problems so long as extremists on the right and ESPECIALLY on the left keep their big mouths shut and stay out of problems that don’t concern them.

      And, to be explicit, I also support repeal of DADT.  I see no reason that a gay person who wants to serve and defend our country should not be allowed to do so so long as he agrees (like every other person who puts on the uniform) to obey the regulations and otherwise behave himself as befits a member of the US armed forces, which is to say with courage, skill, integrity, and honor.

      —–

      (*) When I think of my drill sergeant from basic training, I have to shake my head and wonder at the stupidity of my ancestors who would have confined that great soldier to peeling potatoes if they’d even have allowed him into the Army at all.

  • >Here – this is from someone who just returned from Iraq

    So this argument says DADT works!  So you want to repeal it…for…I still don’t understand.

    You say gays serve now.  Okay, so they are serving their country.  No one is allowed to have sex on duty.  Okay.  So DADT improves things…how?

    You call yourselve a libertarian, but you’re not.   DADT allows people with different morals to serve together.   You are waving a flag for homosexuals, but you are throwing under the bus those who object to it.  Under your system everyone must conform to your views.

    That makes you are a tyrant.    Homosexuality is not sex, it is not race.  And to compare it to either is to show your ignorance and hostility to religion (I am myself agnostic)

    Today I believe that the military requires officers to be “non-political”?  Maybe we should change that as well?  Allow the military to work openly in elections, work in uniform for their party?  After all a political orientation is as important as a sexual one.

  • What an exchange of feelings on this subject. Truly, truly interesting and the most relevant of any I’ve seen as some of the people participating are/have actually lived the circumspect side of this deal in real time.

    From outside, I have the typical Christian introspection which is, love the person, and hate the sin. This thought is fortified when you think of what that person is prepared to give up in defense of our nation. When I hear of those brave souls who are injured or die for the express purpose of making me and my family and friends safe, I am deeply humbled. It makes no difference to me if that person is straight or gay, I am appreciative just the same and there is a dept we owe to those people that can never be repaid. All we can do is give the respect that is due for the people who execute the necessary tasks that insure our continued freedom. I live in America, and what people do in the privacy of their bedrooms is none of my business and it sure as hell is none of the Federal Government’s business. I believe what Bruce said is true, that those who are serious about defending the country are not those who are pushing an agenda. To hell with those who are pushing a gay political agenda, they will be known as “players” straight away and will be shunned so that they sliver away into the abyss they crawled out of. But, to those who are there, first and foremost, to protect this nation that is their home as well as ours, may God have mercy on their sins, as well as on yours and mine. 

    Brown    

  • Qando now has more interesting banner ads….”Atlantis All Gay Cruises.”
    Hmmmm, a bit exclusionary, no?

  • Qando now has more interesting banner ads….”Atlantis All Gay Cruises.”
    Hmmmm, a bit exclusionary, no?
    p.s. I would never have guessed this is the topic that gets 150 comments…

  • I’m afraid that if DADT is repealed it would adversly affect recruiting for quite some time.—-CONEY

  • I think that the argument against repealing it seems to ignore a point that I think is pretty pertinent– gays already serve in the US armed forces, and apparently their fellow soldiers know it, and in many cases know who they are.  DADT is not about keeping gays out of the military, nor is it about keeping the military ‘morally clean’ (unless you also plan to remove people for fornication, adultery, smoking, drunkenness, foul language, and taking the Lord’s name in vain).  It seems to come down to a policy where everyone pretends that there aren’t any gays in the military, and then removes anyone who admits to being a homosexual.
     
    And that sounds like a very weird policy, to me.
     

  • I have to agree with Bruce here, that whatever my personal view of homosexuality is, i dont care if the dude fighting next to me enjoys watching my ass a little more than usual, as long as he is effectively watching my ass.

  • If we want to have homosexuals (or women) in the military, there actually is an easy way to do it.  Set up all-homosexual or all-female units.  That has worked in the past.  Pretending things that are not the same are actually the same, however – that never works.

  • “How about you prove it [homosexuality] isn’t [normal] and then we won’t.”
     
    Liberal mind in full display here.  Denial of normality (90-95% not normal enough for you?).  Denial of biological fact (how many kids do homosexuals have?)  General refusal to engage in logic.  Good going.  You don’t even need people to argue against you, you do a plenty good job making a fool of yourself.

  • Having served in the military recently (retired after 20 yrs) there may be several aspects that most “civilians” do not think about.

    One deals with “dependants” or “family members.” Currently, when a military member (male or female) gets married or has a family, those family members, which includes almost any relationship you care to name (step-children, parents that you are the primary care-giver for, divorced but not remarried spouses, etc.) are able to access all facilities on military posts, and are eligible for TRICARE (the Military Health System), which also acts as insurance with civilian doctors.

    Also, if you remove DADT, does that mean that you ALSO allow that openly gay/lesbian member to MARRY the individual of their choice? Even if that memebr is posted to a base where homosexual marriage is against the law? If an openly gay member marries in a state where it’s legal, then gets posted to a state where it isn’t legal, how will the authorities handle that gay/lesbian member and their spouse?

    There are regulations within the Uniformed Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) which prohibit, “…all disorders and neglects to the prejudice of good order and discipline in the armed forces, all conduct of a nature to bring discredit upon the armed forces…” (Article 134). How do prosecutors determine what exactly are now considerd those actions that are defined in this article?

    These are the questions that AREN’T being either asked or answered, and will cause major problems to our military that is TRYING to fight a war against islamic fascists.

    By the way, think of the propaganda value of this policy shift to these jihadists; “These foreign devils permit homosexuals in their midst!” (as if they need any other example of “moral decadence” to use against us)  

  • I’ve been hesitant to comment because I’ve not served, and so I can’t speak as to how things actually go in the ranks. But the whole thing seems a matter of “who cares”.  If you want to serve, go serve.  Like with anything else, you trust the institutions themselves will police the situation to keep issues from getting out of hand. I mean women sailors already get knocked up on deployment I believe.  I’d think that potential fights and jealousy over that would be more of an issue than if a gay fella was in the unit? It just seems that if the presence of open gays can destroy morale and discipline, then some of these troops weren’t trained well enough. If you volunteer, thank you! But know that you’re gonna serve with all kinds, and maybe you don’t have to like them but you need to work with them.

    If any vet disagrees with what I’ve written in regards to inter-unit dynamics, please feel free to put me some knowledge.

  • Forgive me, but this is the first time I’ve visited this site.  I assume you’ve served in the military, so you would then understand just how fraught with political correctness it has become, to the point where even the suggestion of impropriety can get someone in trouble (remember the whole “it’s not about intent, it’s about perception” grounds for culpability?).   Do you realize this will effectively institutionalize same-sex relations as a government-sanctioned identity?
    You should know, with all the ethnic-heritage months, that gay activists will only be demanding equal recognition with other identities.  If they don’t do this automatically, they’ll wait till some young troop does something stupid, providing them with the moral capital to demand such recognition.  That would inevitably force the military’s hand to implement mandatory programs requiring members (and their children attending DoDD schools) to undergo a form of social re-education.  What we’ll face is nothing short of government-sponsored invasion of conscience.
    If you think activists have had no influence in the military, think again.  What you’re advocating has been the culmination of a very aggressive effort over the last couple of decades, apart from which this wouldn’t even be a matter of discussion.  Everything I’ve described is 100% plausible, and pretty likely, and we both know it.

    • Yup, served. Think it’s the right thing to do – have seen the military handle issues just as complex and do it well. Time for everyone to grow up and acknowledge what’s been true since our founding and what other nations have already had in place for years with no detrimental effects to moral or readiness.

      • I can only refer to the remarks of another officer, that we are the envy of the world’s militaries, not the other way around.
        Do you really think the consequences of P.C. culture has been good for the military? I guess you believe this will serve the cause of some overriding principle, but how this will not bring us one step closer to government-instituted social re-programming is something I’ve not yet seen addressed in any of these discussions.  Apparently, this doesn’t bother you, but I can assure you it bothers a lot of current active duty force whose children will likely become direct subjects of such re-education programs.  Do you really think the military’s reversal on this matter won’t eventually be accompanied by some mandatory re-training on how to think of homosexuality in culture?  And who do you think will be crafting such programs?  A restrained non-activist?
        Part of the reason why I support the continuation of DADT in some form is precisely because sexual orientation shouldn’t be a matter of discussion in the workplace, least of all in the military environment.  By your endorsement of repeal, you’ve extended the reach of the left’s politicization of the military.  Way to go.

      • I neglected to give a reference for an earlier quote:

        Some suggest that the United States must emulate Denmark, the Netherlands and Canada, which have incorporated homosexuals into their forces. But none of these countries has the institutional culture or worldwide responsibilities of our military. America’s armed forces are models for our allies’ militaries and the envy of our adversaries — not the other way around.

        http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/04/14/AR2009041402704.html

        • Check out Israel and Australia – they have what anyone would classify as model militaries that others envy. They may be smaller, but they’re well trained, efficient and potent. Anyone who says Israel’s military isn’t envied or modeled after hasn’t been paying attention. And they’ve managed that with gays serving openly in their ranks. The exception(s), as you might figure, undermines the point you’re trying to make rather significantly.

          • Actually, Bruce I hope you’ll notice it’s actually a minor point.  It’s one which I think still resonates with the majority of those now currently serving, regardless of what other nations are doing.
            I’ve devoted far more attention to matters which will inevitably extend from what you’re proposing.  This has been your second response, and so far nothing in your remarks (or those of anyone else’s) seems to be willing to address those consequences.   I guess these concerns don’t bother you, but they certainly bother a lot of us still in the military.

          • Well, first I reject your contention that those in the military will have to be “re-programmed”. I certainly wouldn’t have to be if I were still serving. I have a son who is in Afghanistan right now who sees this whole thing with gays as a non-issue as do many of his fellow NCOs. And that’s the point – it should be treated as a non-issue. What you who are currently serving may or may not have picked up on is the reserve forces – who are no serving right along side you and have been a decade – aren’t at all as concerned with gays in the ranks as the active types are. There’s a reason for that which you may wish to explore.

            Let me use an analogy to make a point (and no, this doesn’t mean I equate the repeal of DADT with the end of segregation – there’s another point to this). Hosea Williams, one of MLK’s LTs in the civil rights battle was traveling through Demopolis, AL the day after the ’64 civil rights bill was signed into law. It was lunch time. He decided he’d stop there for lunch. He was scared of how he would be received in a previously whites-only cafe and thought about going to black cafe in town. But since he’d fought for the legislation, he was very determined to dine in the white cafe there. He said he walked in, with his heart going 90 miles an hour and the white waitress who met him said hello and ask him where he’d like to sit. Not a bit trouble.

            He said, “I realized at that moment that there were a whole lot of white folks that were just as glad as I was that this is over.”

            That’s the reaction I expect in the military for the most part. For those like you, not so much. My guess is you’ll either get on board or find something else to do. That’s much the same thing that happened when integration became the policy of the US military for those who wouldn’t accept it.

          • Oh, and given your answer about the “minor point” I assume you concede it. I say that because what “resonates with the majority” doesn’t mean it is true or even relevant and certainly isn’t a credible defense of the point.

          • Interestingly enough, it didn’t take long for another blogger to confirm my suspicions:

            Ask yourself this.  Should soldiers in a unit be required to show support for Gay Pride Month, at the risk of being accused of creating a hostile work environment if they don’t?  Because they will be asked to do just that.  Other federal agencies already celebrate Gay Pride Month.  DOD will begin doing so immediately on repeal of DADT.
            Ask yourself this.  Should unit leaders – COs, XOs, command senior NCOs – be required, as a matter of professional promotability and fitness for leadership, to affirm a positive view of homosexuality?  Should they be denied promotion and higher leadership positions if they cannot, in good conscience, agree to a formulaic endorsement? If you believe these should be professional criteria, why?  What is your rationale for this as a military requirement?
            Because this will happen.  It will happen even if the initial implementation of a DADT repeal specifically states that it won’t.  Attrition through lawsuit and Congressional witch-hunt will take care of that.  Military policy will be aligned to avert trouble from political activists – as we have seen already.
            See here and here for longer pieces, with complete documentation, justifying these predictions.

            http://hotair.com/archives/2010/05/14/they-already-serve/
            Again, nothing I’ve seen in anyone’s remarks comes close to addressing the consequences of repeal.  Either advocates of repeal dismiss these concerns as unimportant, or (worse) they haven’t even occurred to them.

          • And obviously, no matter how well written or thought out, you never well “see” in anyone’s remarks anything that you would consider “addressing the consequences of repeal”.

            What I see is someone who can’t handle the possibility and consequently ignores the evidence that this has worked in the past in well respected, well-trained and potent militaries and won’t accept the fact that it would work in ours.

            And that makes continuing the dialog a waste of time.