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Some Straight Talk about Gays serving in the Military
by Robert Randle
10/02/2010 / Politics
It is time for people to finally get a grip and come to their senses on this contentious issue. There is a sort of irrationality and mental disconnect that lead people to contend that having gays serving in the Armed Forces of the United States will somehow threaten the effectiveness and unit cohesion of our fighting forces, posing a grave national security risk; such concerns are unwarranted and utter foolishness. Attorney and retired Army Major, Jeff Cleghorn, who is gay, quotes Armed Services Committee member, Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss, as saying: "Allowing gays to serve openly might somehow lead to alcohol use, adultery, fraternization [with whom??] and body art [tattoos??]." That statement makes about as much sense as the one made by Christine O'Donnell, the East-Coast Sarah Palin, who once said that "Masturbation is Adultery."
Former President Bill Clinton, in an effort to gain the support of gay and lesbian voters, was instrumental in the passage of "Don't ask, Don't tell" which is a dumb and unnecessary law because after gays have finally come out of the closet in the larger society, are they now to go back into the closet and their sexual orientation hidden during deployment in one of the branches of the Armed Services? Some will contend, as does retired U.S. Air Force Major General, Rich Goddard, enlistment into the military by gay Americans is not an act of patriotism and duty but part of their larger agenda to infiltrate the branches of the Armed Forces with a lifestyle that is objectionable to most Americans.
Another concern, which is relevant to the issue is, Section 654 of U.S. Code Title 10, which states that gays are not eligible for military service, and that the military is a "specialized society" that is different from the rest of American society, requiring a code of conduct and discipline that is more restrictive than for the average citizen. Also, gay men are thought to have anonymous sex with multiple partners and frequent places such as libraries, theatres, bowling alleys and movies, targeting and preying upon impressionable, more vulnerable younger children. However, similar claims can be made for the many male heterosexual predators and pedophiles who lurk at these places, also. It is true that the "special culture" within the military has no parallel in American society; still, it is not separate and apart from the U.S. Constitution and Declaration of Independence, which guarantees all citizens the right to LIFE, LIBERTY, and the PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS.
That the presence of gays in the military will in some mysterious way lower morale, weaken the bond of discipline and retard the readiness and training of our troops is not based upon any credible scientific evidence or study but rather on prejudice, fear, hysteria and should not be tolerated one bit. If these brave and patriotic men and women are willing to give their last full measure of devotion to the nation that they love, then we should honor them with the respect and dignity that they so richly deserve.
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September 24, 2010
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