Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repealed: Let’s Just Throw Out All of the Standards

imageThe branches of the United States military will soon have to enlist those who are openly gay as the Senate passed a repeal of the Clinton-era “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy with a 65-31 vote moving the bill to the White House to be signed by President Obama.  Unlike some (the majority of whom I would guess have never served) I’m not celebrating this decision.  When our men and women are in combat we shouldn’t be treating the military as a social experiment.

But you know what?  Let’s just throw out all of the standards!  Fat people Waistline-challenged have been discriminated by the military for years.  Let’s just let them all in!  You weigh over 300 pounds and can’t run five yards?  No problem, we’ve got a place for you.  Don’t have 20/20 vision, no problem you can still be a pilot.  Because it isn’t fair that you can’t fly.  Not tall enough to be an MP?  no problem we’ll drop the 5’8” standard (I don’t know if that is still the regulation, but I was told back in 1989 I wasn’t tall enough at 5’7”) because dwarfs should be be allowed to serve in that MOS (military occupational skill).  Blind?  Deaf?  Not a problem.  Flat feet (my grandfather was kept from serving in WW II because of that)?  No sweat!  If you are 70-years-old and want to serve, we’ll start a Senior’s Brigade!

Matter of fact, it doesn’t matter if you can’t qualify with an M-16 or pass a PT test.  We’ll let you pass because we now have a kinder, gentler military.

The fact is the military has discriminated for years.  It has to have standards, and no not everybody can or should serve.  Congress has harmed military readiness, not helped.  I also think it sucks that they pushed through a controversial piece of legislation during a lame duck session.  No way this would have passed in January.

Some of the usual suspects on the GOP side voted in favor of this bill: Senator Scott Brown (R-MA), Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME), and Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) for instance.  I expect nothing less from New England Republicans.  They were joined by Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), Senator John Ensign (R-NV), Retiring Senator George Voinovich (R-OH), and Freshman Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) (who demonstrated why I couldn’t plug him).

Retiring Senators Jim Bunning (R-KY) and Judd Gregg (R-NH) were absent, as was Senator Orinn Hatch (R-UT).  Hatch needs to explain why he missed the vote.  Snowe, Brown, Ensign, and Hatch are up for re-election in 2012.  I hope they face a tough primary challenger.  I don’t expect that Snowe and Brown would lose, but I believe that Ensign and Hatch are vulnerable and this vote (and non-vote) will help them among their constituents.

I would like to personally thank (and encourage my Iowa readers to do the same) Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) for his no vote.

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Comments

  1. Jimminy Cricket says

    Gays have already been in the military you fool, this DADT wasn’t a magical barrier that kept them out. The fact is, reason doesn’t have any resonance with people like you, who try to hide their shameful bigotry behind the skirt-tails of convoluted logic (FYI being gay isn’t a physical impairment, like being fat or blind, that could hinder the use of a gun). It’s shameful for you, but that doesn’t matter because your hand was forced and you are powerless to do anything about it. Growing up is hard, but you’ll learn.

    • says

      I think you need test your reading comprehension skills, nowhere did I say DADT was a magical barrier. It just didn’t allow gays to serve openly. There are a plethora of reasons why that is a good idea.

      But hey present the homophobe card instead of presenting an actual argument, my point is this – the military has always discriminated.

      The overwhelming of people who supported the repeal have never served plain and simple. So the arguments for the repeal have largely been uninformed, and the arguments against by people who actually know what they are talking about have been ignored.

      But hey, congratulations on your victory by a lame duck Congress. I wonder why they didn’t try to get this pushed through before the elections… hmmmmm…

      • Jimminy Cricket says

        >But hey present the homophobe card instead of presenting an actual argument,…

        Ok, here’s one: All of the other countries that have this policy are having all kinds of problems, right? Oh wait, no, they aren’t. Refute it.

        >The overwhelming of people who supported the repeal have never served plain and simple. So the arguments for the repeal have largely been uninformed, and the arguments against by people who actually know what they are talking about have been ignored.

        Then write a letter to the “overwhelming of people” in the military in that huge study done…you know….by the military…that said it wasn’t a big deal and let them know their opinion is uninformed for not caring about other peoples personal lives. The opinions varied but the MAJORITY said it was not a problem and the last time I checked this was a democracy. And you know what? That doesn’t matter anyway because since when do we take a poll to see what would and would not make a troop uncomfortable? “Excuse me, would you mind going to war and being shot at? Yes? Ok nevermind.” That’s not how things work and it’s ridiculous that it was even necessary. Oh but that study wasn’t good enough because you didn’t write it, correct?

        I’m the one presenting an argument here, you are presenting vague fear mongering by using ambiguous terms like “So the arguments for the repeal have largely been uninformed” (How exactly?) and “There are a plethora of reasons why that is a good idea.” (Pro tip: “Because Jesus says so” or “gays are icky” are not valid scientific points) with some tail-chasing logic about why it’s ok to discriminate for one reason that clearly hinders an operation and one that has no bearing on it at all.

        If you don’t like gay people for whatever reason; maybe you had a bad encounter (there are shitty gay people too, just as there are shitty straight people), maybe you believe the fairy tales of religion, ok whatever, then just say so! It’s pathetic to watch people who feel that way keep trying to hide it behind junk science and circle logic. Don’t write an article that is clearly contradictory to the numbers presented and say they are wrong (????) just because you’d like to think so. Write an article called “Gay People Give Me The Creeps, I Wish I Lived In Straightland” and be done with it. Sheesh.

        Lastly, I don’t need to “play the homophobe card” because one of your search tags is “Homosexual Agenda” so it’s fairly clear what is going on here.

        Look, let me tell you, as a homosexual, the only “agenda” I and others like me have are getting the same rights that you have in this country. If you honestly think gays are in some shady conspiracy to do nonsensical things like recruit children (which, by the way, is impossible) and make other people gay (also impossible), you either had a run in with a kook or you need to get help. We have jobs, we have hobbies, we succeed and we fail just like you do, living life. Open service in the military will soon show that we are as capable of upholding the same standard that has been expected thus far.

        Peace

  2. Anonymous says

    How lucky for us that so many other countries (Israel, Canada, Australia, various NATO allies) have conducted this “social experiment” for some time and had no problems.

    The US is for all practical purposes on a permanent war footing. How many more decades would you care to have us wait to repeal a policy that more than 70 percent of the public opposed?

    • says

      No problems that they have reported which demonstrates how little you know about the military. First they don’t go reporting about the condition of their morale because that is vital intelligence to their enemies. Second you don’t know if problems are being reported up the chain of command. What you have is government bureaucrats saying its going well. Also just how open are the homosexuals in their fighting forces? How many homosexuals are actually fighting.

      As for the current poll, that was one poll. I wonder what the result of surveying just service members would be? Which leads me to another point – people who haven’t served generally don’t have a clue about why we are concerned – this isn’t just like any other job.

      Regarding your argument based on public opinion… I’ll be looking for you to support repealing Obamacare then.

  3. Anonymous says

    How lucky for us that so many other countries (Israel, Canada, Australia, various NATO allies) have conducted this “social experiment” for some time and had no problems.

    The US is for all practical purposes on a permanent war footing. How many more decades would you care to have us wait to repeal a policy that more than 70 percent of the public opposed?

  4. Matthew Brady Duckworth says

    Shane,

    I respect your belief that gay people shouldn’t serve openly in the military. That said, it doesn’t make any sense that this policy means we should eliminate other restrictions to service that actually impact a soldier’s ability to do their job. People who are overweight, blind, deaf, too short, too tall, etc. are discriminated against because they can’t perform the duties required. No one has argued that a person can’t perform the duties of a soldier merely because they are gay. There is simply no dispute that otherwise qualified gay people can serve their country honorably.

    The real issue concerns the attitudes and beliefs of straight soldiers and whether those who find gay sex as sinful or otherwise “icky” can nevertheless remain professional in the performance of their duties. I’m confident the vast majority of soldiers will do so, despite what their personal beliefs may be. The few who can’t deal will it can move on.

    Matt

    • says

      Actually my concern isn’t religious as it is with the close quarters… as you know this isn’t just an ordinary job and soldiers, sailors and Marines have very little privacy. That is my primary concern. I have the same concern with men and women in the field together generally not a good idea (when I say field I mean on the front, etc).

      When it comes to my faith the only vocation that I would say scripture prohibits homosexuals (and others who live blatantly sinful lifestyles) would be leadership within the Church and Christian organizations.

      I would be more comfortable with this decision if it were not made during wartime and logistical concerns were addressed before they pulled the trigger so to speak.

      Then I also have concern with those who do believe this is sinful behavior, I have no doubt they can act professionally, but can homosexuals work with these people without expecting validation of said behavior. Or will these soldiers be forced to attend diversity training that says they must embraces this as a valid expression of human sexuality. Will chaplains be forced to counsel (or marry) same gender couples because they are being paid on the taxpayer dime?

      A lot of concerns need to be addressed and codified before I would ever be comfortable with this.

  5. Sgifan256 says

    Let’s see, homosexuals have been serving in the military, forced to live a lie. There have been zero problems with gays serving in the military, nor in any other country. Hmm for one being gay does not affect anyone in the military, nor being open about it. Except the gay bashing homophobes who believe in lies, and fall prey to their own insecurities. So the only thing keeping this archaic, failed, and unnecessary law in place was prejudice, and homophobic hate.
    Only someone lacking basic logic, and intelligence would back this law, looks like you’ve proven that quite well.

    • says

      You are naive if you think there has been zero problems. The military whether here or in another country isn’t going to broadcast problems like morale.

      You have also provided no argument and instead resort to calling me a homophobe and bash my intelligence. When you say being gay doesn’t affect anyone in the military shows me that you have never served. This isn’t an ordinary job. I’m not against homosexuals working, but unless you have served you have zero clue about the working environment, the close quarters, and the zero privacy that you have.

      Since you couldn’t come here and show an ounce of respect and develop a decent argument without labeling me I’m blocking you. I have no time for commenters like you.

  6. says

    Great article. Before this month, I was a big fan of Mike Huckabee. However, he’s been as quiet as a mouse on the repeal of DADT, both before and after the vote. I left comments on his Web sites and messages at his PAC encouraging him to make a statement on DADT, but he didn’t budge. He’s commented on just about every other issue, though.

    I thought Huckabee was a man of great integrity. I don’t really think so anymore. I think he’s just as spineless as the rest of them. I can’t believe I ever contributed to his campaign. I hope that God will raise up a Republican nominee who’s worth voting for, because Huckabee has lost my vote.