SLDN Explains Why it Opposed the Supreme Court Taking DADT Challenge
The country’s largest gays-in-the-military group says it’s glad the Supreme Court declined to hear a case challenging the ban on gays and lesbians serving openly in the armed forces.
The challenge was brought by James Pietrangelo, who – along with eleven others – had been challenging the constitutionality of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. A federal appeals court in Boston earlier threw out their lawsuit – and Pietrangelo was the only member of that group who asked the high court to rule that the Clinton-era policy is unconstitutional.
But the group representing the other Eleven – didn’t want the case to get that far. Aubrey Sarvis is executive director of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network.
Sarvis: “Eleven of those plaintiffs made the decision that they did not want to proceed with the case before the court as it was currently composed.”
Sarvis said the decision had less to do with legal reasoning, and more to do with weighing the chances of success against the consequences of failure.
Sarvis: “In any decision involving the Supreme Court, it’s a matter of Strategy, tactics, and timing.”
Sarvis said there’s another case making its way through the legal system that might get to the Supreme Court at a more opportune time – but added that the best way to get Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell repealed is not through the courts, but through the Congress.