Gays in the U.S. Military - DADT policy
More reactions to the DADT
repeal law. Two
personal stories during late 2010-December
More reactions to the bill becoming law:
We are unaware of "special 'civil rights' " given to people of color, or LGBTs (lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender persons and transsexuals). All of the anti-discrimination laws that protect these groups also protect heterosexuals and cis-gendered persons equally. We are unaware of any "benefits and protections" claimed by same-sex couples other than that enjoyed by opposite-sex couples.
- Bill James,
a commissioner in Mecklenburg County, NC attacked Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) who voted to repeal DADT.
" 'Homosexuals are sexual predators.' ... Allowing homosexuals to serve in the US military ... ignores a host of serious problems related to maintaining US military readiness and effectiveness not the least of which is the current Democrat plan to allow homosexuals (male and female) to share showers with those they are attracted to."
"The US Government would not allow Hetero men and women to share showers and other personal facilities yet the leading homosexual in Congress (Barney Frank) thinks it is OK for homosexuals to do so allowing enlisted men and women to fall prey to higher ranking or more powerful homosexuals who ogle them (or worse). ..."
"I suspect Richard Burr will pay a high electoral price for his actions but whether it boots him from office next time is unknown. I know I won’t be supporting him even if he does have an R after his name." 3
Two personal stories by service members:
- "Savanna's" is currently a combat medic serving in Afghanistan and is a lesbian. The Boise Weekly interviewed her. Savanna said:
"My time in service has been rough. I was aware of the DADT policy, but I don’t believe now that any soldier who DADT directly affects really understands how difficult, mentally and emotionally, hiding their true identity will be until it’s too late to turn back. ... During basic training, a small group of lesbians were unfairly blamed for being 'too close' to who was obviously a lesbian drill sergeant. I am thankful to have had a First Sergeant who stood for what he believed was right. He pulled each of the trainees facing the indiscretion aside and helped us to send home anything that could be perceived to be against the DADT policy (letters, pictures etc.) before the investigation began."
“I am willing to die for my country. Who I go home to at night and who I love should hold no substance. ... What I would give to marry the woman I’m with and move her to my duty station as my spouse." 4
- Korrie Xavier once served on the USS Boxer, an amphibious assault vessel. However, she found living a secret life to be too stressful. She was in her very early 20s when she was trained to maintain and fire weapons systems on the ship. Only when she was in the military did she come to terms with her sexuality and accept that she is a lesbian. She became a lay center of Jewish shipboard life, even as she hid her sexual orientation in the "closet" from all but a few fellow service members onboard. She said:
"I loved being out to sea — in the middle of the night, when you’d hang off the fantail, and just listen to the water. It was incredibly calming, and you could see all the stars in the world."
Her immediate family of origin was also adversely affected by the DADT policy. They had to be careful what they said to friends
and families in case they accidentally "outed" her and terminated her career.
After four years in to her six-year commitment she wrote a letter to the captain in which she revealed her orientation. It said, in part:
"For the last few years, I’ve been willing to compromise myself. ... I realize now that there is no honor or pride in serving an institution that is so obviously ashamed of me."
Within months she was separated from the Navy, against her wishes.
She now lives in the Boston with her wife of two years -- a doctor of psychology. The were married in a Jewish ceremony by a rabbi.
She is debating reenlisting if the DADT policy is finally lifted. She said:
"Politically I have such issues with the military, and at the same time I miss it. I don’t think I would re-enlist. I think the part of me that wants to re-enlist is the little boy who wants to watch war movies. But there is something about that shared experience, to me, that is appealing."5
The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.
- Ben Adler, "Looking beyond don't ask, Don't Tell," Newsweek Magazine, 2010-DEC-22, at: http://www.newsweek.com/
- "Confusion Growing over Tolerance of Homosexuals," Chick Publications, 2010-DEC, at: http://www.chick.com/
- Igor Volsky, "NC Lawmaker Lashes Out At Burr For DADT Repeal Vote: 'Homosexuals Are Sexual Predators'," Think Progress, 2010-DEC-30, at: http://thinkprogress.org/
- Jody May-Chang, "Idaho Soldier Serving from the Closet. DADT Repeal Doesn't Lift All Burdens," Boise Weekly, 2010-DEC-30, at: http://www.boiseweekly.com/
- Karen Loew, "Double marker: A gay Jew in the Navy," Forward newspaper, 2010-DEC-29, at: http://www.forward.com/
Copyright © 2010 by Ontario Consultants on
Originally written: 2010-DEC-27
Latest update: 2011-JAN-01
Author: B.A. Robinson