So... Don't ask?
February 15th, 2010
I'm admittedly not well versed in the affairs of the United States armed forces. I won't begin to start down the complicated path of spokesman but I'll be darned, how can I avoid this little tidbit that's saturated the news of late?
SO let me get this out right now. I'm not a proponent of repealing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell". Altering it sure, but downright removal seems a bit premature when considering the plethora of other issues that deserve such attention. The nature of rape in the armed forces. Funding and care for returning soldiers, veterans. Redefining instruction so that "youtube" videos of soldiers wasting ammunition to blow things up and "tweets" about their location don't flood the net for ally and enemy to see alike. Before jumping straight to labeling me "homophobic", I just want to try and explain how somewhere down the line, DADT may be worth all this drama but for right now, there are for more important things than shaking up the military structure especially while we're still in the middle of a war. And quite frankly, if the only thing stopping someone from enlisting was the fact that they would have to hide their sexuality then perhaps they don't belong there anyway.
I state such a truth because really, when did putting one's country before one's life mean said life sans being open about their sexuality? Enlisting is about sacrifice. One's time, devotion, freedoms, and in ultimate cases, their lives in effort to protect that which they love and hold dear. So, where does one's sexuality come into play in that duty? Not just for homosexuals but heterosexuals as well. Is being discharged based on one's preference extreme? Of course it is. But is opening the door and telling the majority to just "deal with it" any better? I mean heck if that's the case then it runs back toward more significant issues that should be addressed. Issues like the in a country who's native language is English American), one doesn't have to actually be able to speak it to be a citizen. When are we--who've taken the time to learn and be proficient in the language--going to stop accommodating those who don't seem to even be trying to adapt and tell them to just "deal with it"? This doesn't make any sense to me and it's not as though I haven't browsed news sites, reading articles, and rolling through comments pages.
I stand here having listening to arguments from both sides but find the one big question that I don't see anyone asking being, "how does it help?" Joining the armed forces has never been described to me as similar to summer camp. I've grown up being told enlistment is putting one's life on hold. Though there is a lot to gain from the service there is so much that must also be sacrificed. So why is there this sudden drive to accommodate people's sexualities? And where does it end? If the next minority of people happen to be those who find themselves romantically attracted to young children, then are they going to get a say as well? Homosexuals state they can't help how they feel and can't change who they fall in love with but then again a number of pedophiles have said the same thing. Especially in a society where our youths are gaining greater and more vast amounts of knowledge than our elders. Where does a future lie in making sexuality an open door when the focus use to simply be having the desire to defend one's country and way of life?
I still for the life of me can't comprehend how it helps? How does knowing one's sexuality, homo or hetero, help someone in combat? How does it help someone at work? How does it help when you're tasked with turning civilians into warriors? Someone, anyone, just let me know how completely removing the policy does anything more than spare a couple of people's feelings, open the door to lawsuits over "hate speech" and increases in accusations of molestation or rape
Someone, anyone, just give me an answer.