On Don't Ask, Don't Tell

>> Thursday, May 27, 2010

Throughout the past year some of my friends more in touch with the gay activists circuit had became fans of Dan Choi. I get it, it's refreshing to find an activist to be so passionate about gay rights and to be rightfully a public figure with a voice is very inspiring and he's Asian to boost. I understand how repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell is important. If you're willing to sacrifice for your country, your sexuality shouldn't be the subject of scrutiny. Especially when you don't plan to TELL anyone but your boss or colleague actively seek out information on your sexuality by looking through your personal e-mails.

Other than a few African nations, there are no other countries with a more homophobic culture than United States. Maybe it was the religious right or maybe it's the depiction of gay promiscuity in the 70s became the stereotype for gays or maybe it's the traumatizing HIV started out as the gay disease, we are demonized because we are not the norm. A lot of homophobes thinks that being gay makes you less of a person, or it signifies lesser in moral and discipline, as if a gay person will go into the army and have sex with everyone.

Christian Newswire even go as far as saying if DADT is repealed, the soldiers will get AIDS which is stupid on so many levels. Gays are already serving in the military, if the soldiers are going to get AIDS, they should be already getting it. Plus just because you're gay, it doesn't mean you have AIDS and if they have gotten some serious sex counseling, they would know it's not that easy to transmit HIV. Of course, you cannot reason with people who won't reason, that pretty much rings true with homophobes, religious right, teabaggers, Republicans, the Fox News crowd and racists alike.

I do believe that DADT is getting repealed very soon. A recent compromise has been proposed in which firing of gay and lesbians soldiers will halt but the full repeal still has to wait until a study is done to ensure that there will not have a negative impact on readiness, recruitment, retention and other key factors that affect the military. I'm pretty sure some soldiers will say that if DADT is repealed they will leave the army thus creating negative impact on retention. As it stands, there's no non-discrimination policy in the repeal which means we are repealing the Don't Ask, Don't Tell part but still you can't ask or tell because even they won't discharge you for it, it will still make your world very difficult. And what is the punishments for the one who asked, or even worst, spied?

It's horrible for me to not care but I don't understand why gay folks would want to serve where they are not welcomed. If we're being mistreated and have to constant be in fear of being outed and dishonorably discharged, not because we committed a sex crime but merely because of our sexual orientation. For that very reason, everything we worked hard for, the hours, the wounds, the achievement we have attained will all be meaningless in a flash. So why? If the military would rather lose valuable translators than have us gays be in the army, why bother? If that's how the policy makers want to run the army, why do we insist on sacrificing our time and lives in it?

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