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‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Expert Responds to Military, McCain

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People on both sides of the issue of gays in the military spent most of Thursday reacting to Wednesday Night’s State of the Union speech, in which President Obama pledged to work to end the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy this year. Many of gay activists noted that Obama has made similar statements before, did not lay out a concrete blueprint, and called the comments ‘more of the same.’

Perhaps more important was the military reaction. While Defense Secretary Robert Gates did stand up and applaud the pledge during the State of the Union, on Thursday, Army Chief of Staff George Casey skipped around questions of whether the military was ‘ready’ to lift the ban. But gays-in-the-military expert Nathaniel Frank said what the military SAYS doesn’t matter nearly as much as what they do.

Frank: “If you want to know what the military really thinks, look at the discharge numbers. They have been going down almost every year since we became a nation at war. So we know commanders have been ignoring this policy, because it’s not serving them. So in public the military might say ‘we don’t want this’ but that’s not how they’re behaving.”

Vocal opponents of gays serving openly also spoke out on Thursday. Senator John McCain said “This successful policy has been in effect for over fifteen years, and it is well understood and predominantly supported by our military.”

Nathaniel Frank questioned McCain’s claim that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is ‘working.’

Frank: “Working to do what? If what you’re after is to discriminate, then yes it’s working to discriminate. But to say this is a successful policy when even the military commanders are ignoring it – I think the idea that ‘delay, delay, delay, this is working fine, don’t touch it’ – this is the conservative position and it’s rooted in nothing.”

Senior military leaders are expected to lay out a more detailed plan before the Senate Armed Services committee next Tuesday.


Written by OutQ News staff

January 29, 2010 at 8:00 AM

Posted in Uncategorized

One Response

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  1. I can’t believe a former Military man like McCain would think ANYTHING like “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” is working. Truth be told he’s probably doing what his people are telling him to do, that’s in his interest to being re-elected. I mean this is the guy who said he was for Gay Marriage on one talk show then one of his people whispered in his ear that he’s against it and he suddenly changed his tune. I believe this is when he was running for President.
    Anyway, keeping “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” is moronic. How many Gay’s are IN the closet in the Military and a huge threat to our security with just the hint of Blackmail from our enemies of being outed. I mean it’s not like “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” doesn’t drum out the person who tells, which makes the whole proposition false to begin with. If it was valid that person would be kicked out of the Military and the Gay person would be kept since they didn’t tell.


    January 29, 2010 at 9:08 PM

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