Here is a sampling of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” responses I received from my editorial last week. There was only one nasty name calling liberal and I challenged him to write an article expressing his point. He has failed to respond with nothing but name calling.
Army Warrant Officer
I enlisted in 1964 and retired in 2006. This gives me a fair amount of exposure to military life including multiple tours in RVN, Korea, Japan and the Philippines.(Purple Hearts included) Having gays in the military is something that has always been and has never been a problem to anyone but the political. All of us knew who was gay and who wasn’t and as long as there was no intrusion on our beliefs and practices there was no problem with something that was done privately. The only questions that we ever had were; 1. Can you do your job? 2. Can you follow the rules? After these questions were answered there was no concern if the person was male, female, black, brown, orange, polka dot, Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, gay, straight, bisexual, or asexual. The problem with removing the ban in today’s politically correct society is that it will create another privileged class to abuse the system by claiming discrimination for the same two reasons that minorities and women have done for years; to cover substandard performance or retaliation, or both. I believe in protecting people from discrimination but the creation of protected classes leads to abuse that diminishes the legitimate claims and that in and of itself is the problem. I have gay grandchildren that would love to serve in the military but I have warned them of the problems once they are labeled and people look at them and their actions with a distorted perspective instead of treating them as individuals. I am against removal of the ban, not because of performance, but because of the politically correct fallout.
Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant
I have to say that gays in the service still make the hair on my neck stand up. Not because I am homophobic, but because I have seen abuses of power by service personnel who tried to convince their subordinates to try to/ or engage in “alternate” lifestyle activities. In fact, in 1977/78, a woman Marine major and couple of staffncos were given the choice of court-martial or discharge, because they were trying to force themselves onto hetero women, on Okinawa. The whole thing was hushed up, but nonetheless, a number of women personnel both marine and army, asked to be transferred(from MCB Camp Butler) because of fear of reprisals from any other “gay” superiors who avoided being exposed.
Most poignant to me, was the case of an exceptional woman Marine corporal, who came to me–as both a friend and staff sergeant–to talk to me about a situation that had her in tears and full of self-doubt. Apparently, a few of her female seniors were trying to convince her that she was a latent lesbian because she was a fine athlete, never dated male marines steadily, and had turned a couple of male marines in for sexual harassment. This young corporal was focused more on her career than having a long-term personal relationship at the time. While I won’t go into our counseling session, it brought home to me, how some senior members of the Armed Forces could impose their “gay” lifestyles on subordinates.
Among women personnel, out of uniform, public displays of affection, are generally taken for granted by the general public. Girls hug, etc., and it’s no big deal. However, lesbianism in the military, could take an insidious turn.
As for male personnel, living the “alternate lifestyle” it would be more covert, but there will always be that 10% of senior personnel who may attempt to compromise their subordinates or violate regulations concerning fraternization…no matter what the lifestyle. Yet, I know of more than one senior Marine who avoided being grilled about his behavior, by agreeing to retire/accept an honorable discharge.
Being that our legislators and administrations have short memories, I still remember a Marine Corps Colonel, telling a Congressional hearing, that he would advise his gay son not to join the Marine Corps or any of the services. Even with “don’t ask, don’t tell,” the colonel quoted some of the same reasons I have laid out and others.
While I have become tolerant of “alternate lifestylers” in the civilian sector, I believe that gays in the military create special problems and have and could compromise the professionalism and mission accomplishment of our services. Hell, just getting our “heteros” to keep a lid on it, is difficult enough. Our young troops have a direct link from their crotches to their brain-housing groups, with no cut-off switch. Why add more complications to the difficulties our career personnel have in keeping young troops focused?
A Hate Filled Liberal
Your comments on DADT are flat out stupid. DADT is about people lying to stay in the military. All the rest of what you have to say is macho unsupportable rubbish.
DADT is not working “just fine” because you are kicking out people who we have spent a fortune on to train.
Your unsupportable right wing homophobia may appeal to your audience but there are no facts to support it. Macho behavior doesn’t make for sensible decision making.
How intelligent are you if you don’t understand that homosexuality is normal in the animal kingdom.
You are clueless on this subject.
Typical right wing macho garbage.