An Important Victory for the US Military

Today I would like to celebrate a victory. A small victory, and one which was decades overdue, but an important victory nevertheless. A few hours ago, the Senate voted for closure (time to stop debating) on the repeal of 10 U.S.C §654, the law that prohibits gays from serving in the US military. This law was unfair to those who wished to serve and it harmed the US armed forces, both by depriving them of the services of some highly-skilled servicemembers and by encouraging servicemembers to lie and keep secrets. President Clinton’s policy of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” only slightly mitigated these ills. This kind of policy made us a laughingstock throughout the world.

I am delighted to be able to say that we have taken this small but important step forward toward rights for everyone in my country. I hope it is only the first of many.

Comments

2 Responses to “An Important Victory for the US Military”

  1. Brent on 2010-12-19 2:55 am

    An important milestone. One more success to look back at as we push forward towards full and equal rights for gay individuals and gay couples in our country.

    The time of secrecy and misdirection should be behind us, not just in the military, but in all of our society. We have too many pressing issues in this day and age to still be fighting a battle from the last century.

  2. mcherm on 2010-12-19 9:24 pm

    We have many pressing issues, but I think that this is one for the beginning of this century, not the last. To our founding fathers was given the task of establishing democracy, to a later generation was given the task of ending slavery; to another that of women’s suffrage; to one more recent was given the task of equal treatment for blacks.

    Not that any of these generations fully accomplished their task, nor was this the sole issue of the day for any of these generations. But when the history books look back on the ongoing struggle to raise the human condition, there was a primary test each of these generations faced.

    In just this sense, I feel that our generation faces the task of establishing equal treatment to those whose sexuality differs from that most widely practiced. In many ways, we have made great strides (how many prime time TV shows feature gay characters?). In others, like the military and marriage rights, we have actually backslid from the previous situation.

    Until this week. As of this week, we have actually IMPROVED in tolerance within the military over what our parents passed us.

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