Can’t Ask ..?

Although sodomy has historically been a criminal offense and therefore a cause of dishonorable release, it was not until 1942 that the amended Army regulations included a definition of both the gay and the “normal” person. The armed forces recognized and denied lesbian and gay draftees for the first time through psychiatric screening. Ironically, these prohibitions and exclusions were suspended during moments of war, allowing homosexuals to enlist and be drafted.

In 1981, the Defense Department (DOD) codified its military policy against homosexuals (DOD Directive 1332.14, 28 January 1982, Part 1, Section H). Nearly 17,000 males and women were discharged in the 1980s under the category of homosexuality, according to a 1992 study by the Government Accounting Office (GAO). Homosexuals were permitted to serve again during the war in the Persian Gulf. However, once the war came to an end, the DoD Military Code of Justice dishonorably discharged hundreds of earlier decorated military staff.

In January 1993, under pressure from homosexual followers, then president William J. Clinton commissioned a review of the military’s DoD policy on homosexuals. Clinton and then Senator Sam Nunn (D-GA), chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee, compromised with a “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue” strategy with powerful and vehement resistance from Congress and the military establishment. Congress codified most of the agreement that September.

Homosexual military personnel and their legal supporters have confirmed since its enactment that it has been a disaster for LGBT military personnel as a policy, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue.” Dishonorable discharges and military witch-hunts have increased significantly under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue.” The Pentagon confirms that since the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue” policy came into force in 1994, more than 8,500 men and girls have been removed from the armed forces. Some organizations estimate the cost to the army to replace those discharged since 1994 was more than $200 million.

Other reports showed a significant rise in the amount of alleged lesbian and gay staff inquiries. And most reports show that harassment has intensified in some locations of suspected lesbian and gay staff. More ironically, some DoD researchers conducted their investigations so unanimously that they also succeeded in prosecuting and discharging heterosexual members of the army. Rather than “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue,” our army is acting on and producing proof based on the flimsiest rumors.

Pfc in 1999. Barry Winchell has been convicted of Pvt’s murder. By beating him to death with a baseball bat while he was sleeping, Calvin Glover, a member of his unit. Prosecutors asserted that because he was a homosexual, Glover killed Winchell. Officially confirmed the verdict in that trial, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue,” was and is a failure.

George W. Bush has been very evident in his rhetoric since the start of 2003. With or without the approval and support of the armed forces of the United Nations, America will go to war with Iraq.

The Marine Corps took the uncommon step of preventing all Marines from leaving the service for the next twelve months starting in January 2003 in reaction to the mobilization ordered by President Bush. The so-called “stop-loss” order applies to the Marine Corps as a whole-173,000 active duty men and women and 100,000 in reserves. The order also stipulates, however, that those Marines presently facing discharge will continue to be separated from service due to sexual orientation. No other army branches have issued a “stop-loss” order.

It has been revealed over the past few weeks that a number of army specialists-staff with unique training that makes them particularly useful in the case of a Middle East conflict-have been discharged as homosexuals.

Don’t ask the question. Don’t say that. Don’t go after it.

Until next time…