I’ve meant to talk about it sooner, but it wasn’t until I saw some particularly egregious arguments that I was spurred to action. Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell absolutely needs to be repealed. First announced at the State of the Union address, Defense Secretary Bob Gates and JCS Chairman Admiral Mike Mullen continued to call for it at a press conference later that week. Admiral Mullen’s comments – declaring the current policy as detrimental to the military’s integrity – are particularly noteworthy:
No matter how I look at this issue, I cannot escape being troubled by the fact that we have in place a policy which forces young men and women to lie about who they are in order to defend their fellow citizens. For me, it comes down to integrity — theirs as individuals and ours as an institution. I also believe that the great young men and women of our military can and would accommodate such a change. I never underestimate their ability to adapt.
We would also do well to remember that this is not an issue for the military leadership to decide [emphasis mine].
Andrew Sullivan has a great roundup of post-speech analysis, most of which generally concludes that yes, it’s time for DADT to go. But what I have problem with is the recent round of fatuous arguments, including a comparison of gay soldiers with Hitler supporters in the Wehrmacht. The US Naval Institute blog also has a pretty heinous post. Via Edge of the American West, who also came up with the best title for their coverage: “In Case You Were Worried That Someone Semi-Official Wouldn’t Make A Horribly Bigoted Argument About Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”
The USNI blog post is just called “Repeal of DADT, Amplifying Instructions.” It purports to rewrite the King James Bible, because of course the King James edition (and the King James only) is roughly equivalent to the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Highlights:
LEVIDICUS [sic] 18:22 WILL BE CHANGED FROM ‘THOU SHALT NOT LIE WITH MANKIND, AS WITH WOMANKIND: IT IS ABOMINATION’. TO ‘THOU ART PERMITTED TO LIE WITH MANKIND, AS WITH WOMANKIND: IT IS NOW IN KEEPING WITH DOD POLICY’.
DEUTERONOMY 23:17 ‘THERE SHALL BE NO WHORE OF THE DAUGHTERS OF ISRAEL, NOR A SODOMITE OF THE SONS OF ISRAEL’ WILL HAVE THE WORD ‘SODOMITE’ REPLACED WITH ‘INTOLERANT PERSON’.
…and so on. There’s no excuse for the imposition of your religions on the entire military establishment. Farley has a nice, brief takedown at Information Dissemination.
It’s not about religion, belief, agendas, or any other conspiracy nonsense. Everyone who’s capable, who’s earned it, and who’s wholly committed to serving the country deserves the respect to be allowed to do so, without having to hide a piece of his identity.