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Obama May End Military's Ban on Gays

Just when you thought it could't get any worse............

Obama May End Military's Ban on Gays
January 07, 2009 Agence France-Presse
Sixteen years after Bill Clinton tried to end restrictions on gays in the military, the U.S. armed forces under Barack Obama may be forced to give homosexuals the same welcome as non-gays.
Under president Clinton, the policy that once saw homosexuals discharged from US military service evolved to "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," allowing gays to remain in the military so long as they did not reveal their sexual orientation.
Obama has pledged to overhaul current law.
"The key test for military service should be patriotism, a sense of duty, and a willingness to serve. Discrimination should be prohibited," reads an entry on the president-elect's transition website.

HYPERLINK "http://www.military.com"Poll: Should Obama Overturn "Don't Ask Don't Tell?"

Shortly after taking the oath of office in 1993, Clinton originally moved for an outright ban on discrimination based on sexual orientation in the military.
That step, for better or worse, prompted an outcry among top military brass, along with many Republicans and a significant segment of the public.
Clinton quickly came up with his "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" compromise, allowing gays and lesbians to serve in the military as long as they did not speak about their sexual orientation.
The law however still has seen a large number of dismissals of gay service members. Since its enactment, some 12,500 soldiers have been sent packing for acknowledging their homosexuality or after being outed as gay.
Those booted included some 800 key jobs such as Arabic translators, medical staff, pilots and intelligence personnel, according to the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, a group which is fighting to end all restrictions on military service based on sexual orientation.
Backers of reform said the move toward loosening restriction reflects a change in societal attitudes.
"There has been a sea change in the way this issue is viewed, especially in light of our national security needs," said Democratic lawmaker Ellen Tauscher.
"We shouldn't be forcing good men and women out of military service," Tauscher told AFP.
The lawmaker is the lead sponsor in the House of Representatives of the Military Readiness Enhancement Act, which would replace "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."
"The momentum for repeal has already begun. This summer we held first hearing on this issue in 15 years and recent public surveys show 75 percent of Americans believe (homosexual) men and women should be able to serve openly," the California lawmaker continued.
"My bill to repeal the policy last year had 148 co-sponsors in the House. I will reintroduce this legislation in the coming Congress," Tauscher added.
Even a group of some 100 retired generals and admirals recently appealed for "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" to be scrapped.
"As is the case with Great Britain, Israel, and other nations that allow gays and lesbians to serve openly, our service members are professionals who are able to work together effectively despite differences in race, gender, religion, and sexuality," the former military brass wrote in their November 2008 letter.
Many in the traditionally conservative military community continue to have misgivings, but that lack of support should not impede getting rid of the law, opponents said.
"There will always be some people who will prefer the status quo, but people who preferred segregated units (banned in the U.S. military in 1948) didn't leave the military by and large," notes Aubrey Sarvis, director of the SDLN.
Obama will have to be firm in his commitment to ending discrimination against gays in the military, he warned, despite a full agenda of burgeoning crises.
"Of course, the economy has to be the first priority, but it's a matter of developing a plan on how to move forward successfully," said Sarvis, who predicted a new law within the year.
"I take the president-elect on his word," he said. "I think he'll do it."
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Old 01-15-2009, 09:22 AM
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Old 01-15-2009, 09:23 AM
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This thread should so be in PARF.
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Old 01-15-2009, 09:23 AM
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Yes it should.

Also, the article gives no basis for its prediction other than one Congressman's opinion. There are 435 of them. 1/435 = zippo.

I think he'd like to do it, but realizes its a "third rail" of American politics and is realistically a rather insignificant issue. What is the chance that Obama wants to starts his term by immediately repeating one of the most famous political blunders of the Clinton administration?
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Old 01-15-2009, 09:27 AM
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Anyways, I find it funny how much "Don't ask, don't tell" is criticized by the left, when every single artile or opinion piece ALWAYS neglects to mention that this is a Bill Clinton policy.
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I think it was a bad policy. Perhaps an improvement on the previous policy. But still bad.

My memory is, Clinton made a stupid decision to lead off w/ the gays in military issue, it blew up in his face, and DADT was the cobbled-together face-saving compromise.

Either permit gays to serve, or don't.

I know gay men who served (one of my good friends was Army infantry, stationed Korea, in the 80s).
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Old 01-15-2009, 10:07 AM
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Old 01-15-2009, 10:17 AM
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When DADT was implemented, it was all that could be tolerated at the time. The military didn’t want gays at all, but tolerated them if they kept secret about it. Times have changed. I think the military is ready to accept gays. Of course, standard sexual harassment rules still apply, but they apply equally and without discrimination to both heteros and gays.

This is just social progress. First, the military didn’t tolerate them at all, no matter what. Next, they tolerated them if they kept quiet about it (DADT). The next step, which is what is currently being discussed, is to tolerate them while they are open about it. The last step is to change “tolerate” to “accept.”
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Old 01-15-2009, 10:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by legion View Post
Anyways, I find it funny how much "Don't ask, don't tell" is criticized by the left, when every single artile or opinion piece ALWAYS neglects to mention that this is a Bill Clinton policy.
Huh?

Everyone knows it is a Bill Clinton policy, why does it have to be mentioned?

And you've never seen policies criticized by the right, while neglecting to mention the republican president that implemented them? It works both ways.

Perhaps the right can't do this, but those on the left are free to criticize the policies implemented by a democrat. Just because we voted for him doesn't mean we agree with 100% of his policies, or bow down and kiss his feet.

I can tell you right now that I won't agree 100% with everything Obama does. I reserve the right to criticize those policies I disagree with.

Democrats are free to criticize policies implemented by a democratic president. I don't see this as "funny." I see it as democracy in action. It's a good thing.

Bush, on the other hand, is the one who said "if you aren't with us, you're against us."
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Old 01-15-2009, 10:54 AM
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I think gays should have the same opportunity to fight and die for the Islamic Party of Iraq as anyone else.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iraqi_Islamic_Party
Quote:
Following the elections the IAF joined the United Iraqi Alliance-led government of Nouri al-Maliki.


Edited for Iran/Iraq typo.
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This is another one of those issues I don't really have an opinion on.

I just wish a real, bonafide, nonpartisan study would be done. If having gays openly in the military impairs our ability to fight, then this policy should not be changed. If it does not affect anything, go ahead and change it.

Instead we have political posturing on both sides and no real study of the issue or what it might impact.
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Old 01-15-2009, 11:02 AM
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I suggest that ALL military personnel (every country) be entirely gay, no more heteros allowed.

No more weapons, bombs, bullets, aircraft ...etc. needed.

All disputes would be settled by open-handed, bytch-slapping fests and comparison of leather attire. " You didn't!!! "
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Old 01-15-2009, 11:16 AM
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agree..
it will be decided by folks who dislike the military..
would be turned down by the military...
in general by folks who have no clue about the military..
I served with some Gays..no problem
thing was they didn't make an issue out of it..
a flammie does nothing more than invite a blanket party..
& discharge for something..
I'm sure BDU's in pink are just around the corner..
and if I had a Co or a Top ala Barney mumbles Frank..
I would have laughed at it and take the art. 15

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Quote:
Originally Posted by gt350mike View Post
Obama May End Military's Ban on Gays
Well that will really help morale and unit cohesion.

Quote:
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Old 01-15-2009, 05:43 PM
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I think it was a bad policy. Perhaps an improvement on the previous policy. But still bad..
No, it's just bad.
Old 01-15-2009, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by m21sniper View Post
Well that will really help morale and unit cohesion.


Maybe it's time for a "tour of duty". I hear a good sniper is hard to find.
Or is it, a hard sniper is good to find?
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Old 01-15-2009, 06:21 PM
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Old 01-15-2009, 06:48 PM
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Military service is difficult enough. Having to sleep and shower with openly gay folks just makes it more difficult. Why make military life any harder/worse than it is now?
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Old 01-15-2009, 06:58 PM
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Wouldn't the military commanders be the best ones to ask regarding what's best and what works/doesn't work here? Why the need to politicize this and turn it into a lightning rod (no pun) for controversy?
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Old 01-15-2009, 07:29 PM
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Why is gay in the military such an issue? I bet William and his hoards in 1066 had a bunch of alternate lifestyle people in in his army.. You think there you aren't serving beside someone who is gay?

That they might serve there country with valor..?

My cousin was #2 in his class at West Point.....

he died of AIDS..

Smart guy.... West Point.... Kuwait, Iraq, etc...
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Old 01-15-2009, 07:30 PM
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