Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Don't Ask Don't Tell

I'll come back to the STDs being compared to nuclear waste.  I promise.

It really irritates me to see how Republicans are currently threatening a filibuster of a bill that will repeal don't ask don't tell.  Now there might be a dozen and a half reasons to filibuster the bill, since its attached to other legislation etc.  But McCain was waving the flag for why DADT shouldn't be repealed yet yesterday.

He's worried about our troop morale.  He's worried that openly gay service members would affect troop morale to the extent that they wouldn't be able to do their jobs as well.

McCain clearly doesn't think very highly of our enlisted.  To degrade our troops in saying that they're training isn't sufficient for them to stand next to a gay man or woman without being distracted from their job because they're too worried somebody is going to hit on them is insulting to our armed forces.  We have the best trained military in the world.  These men and women are disciplined, intelligent, and brave.  But of course they all turn into Junior high kids when there is a queer near by right?

To be fair, McCain didn't say that.  But I'm pretty confident that what he did say has similar implications, if not so hyperbolic.  DADT never should have been in existence.  And its about time we get rid of it.


  1. Wayne, I agree and disagree with you. It is ridiculous to think that those in uniform cannot be inclusive of gay people and function properly. It's an archaic notion. It's old fashioned.

    .....but there is an unfortunate truth to that belief. McCain speaks from personal experience as a military man. I'm speaking from personal experience and as someone living the military life. There is a culture of masculinity and heroism and chauvinism that exists in the military. It's not right, it shouldn't be encouraged, but it's there. A large portion of the men come from the extreme side of this machismo attitude. Many come from modest upbringings and don't even know any gay people IRL. They just have stereotypes and loose ideas of what "gay people" are and do. But this is not all military people. It's a fact that there are a lot of gay people in the military, but they just hide their sexuality.

    I believe the don't ask, don't tell rule should be repealed. I believe in complete equal rights for gay people. ...but when it comes to the military, it will be a big adjustment. There will be violence and harrassment. There will have to be sensitivity classes just like the sexual harassment classes that had to be taken when women began playing more integral roles in the military. But it's something I think needs to be done. And eventually, the presence of gay people in the military will be as unspecial as women in the military. It will just take a lot of time, effort, and patience.

  2. Well if the machismo culture is so prevalent, then wouldn't women serving cause similar distractions?

  3. Wayne, It does. Men fight over the women at work. Marriages are lost from perceived or actual infidelities. Women flaunt their sexuality to get what they want, sometimes this gets otherwise good people fired, or worse killed. Sex has nothing to do with what we do in our workplace (ie the battlefield). INHO neither men nor women should express their sexual preferences nor sexuality at work. Don't ask, don't tell both protects and harms gay servicepersons, yes. But, the underlying issue is not that their individual freedoms are stifled, but that sex distracts us from doing our job effectively, whether gay or straight.

  4. mmmk... I'll concede the point that sex makes people stupid, no matter how well trained you are.

    But DADT doesn't protect gay service person's at all. It sets up a system where if one person exposes details about their lives, they get fired, whereas another person exposes the same details about their lives, they don't.

    If sex is such a concern, then DADT should apply to straights as well. So any mention of your heterosexuality, sexual escapades, etc, would get you fired. That would make DADT equitable.