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mariner
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Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 8:15 pm

Over 100 retired senior military personnel have sent an open letter to the President Elect, asking him to end DADT:

http://www.towleroad.com/2008/11/100-military-le.html

"We support the recent comments of former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General John Shalikashvili, who has concluded that repealing the "don't ask, don't tell" policy would not harm and would indeed help our armed forces. As is the case with Great Britain, Israel, and other nations that allow gays and lesbians to serve openly, our service members are professionals who are able to work together effectively despite differences in race, gender, religion, and sexuality. Such collaboration reflects the strength and the best traditions of our democracy."

According to the AP, Obama has expressed support for the repeal, but he would not do so on his own.

Can we look forward in hope that it will end?

mariner
 
flynavy
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 8:20 pm



Quoting Mariner (Thread starter):
Can we look forward in hope that it will end?

Yes, I certainly hope so. I personally know an Arabic linguist who was discharged under DADT. The government (that means you, the taxpayer) spent millions of dollars on him. I'd even venture to say DADT is a threat to national security.

Me, personally - the government spent millions on me during my military training as well. I can honestly say that had I been discharged under DADT, it would have been a detriment to my unit and to the country as I was a vital asset to my command. Had they lost me, it would have hurt them. Luckily, though, that didn't happen.

It's all about personal sacrifice, which I did. That being said...

DADT is bogus. Its days are numbered.
 
flynavy
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 8:32 pm



Quoting QXatFAT (Reply 2):
Meaning, are gay men and women not allowed to serve? I was a little too young for when it was big in the Clinton administration.

Wikipedia is your friend: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don't_ask,_don't_tell.
 
QXatFAT
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 8:33 pm

Sorry for my ignorance, but is DADT something for gays to be in our military? Meaning, are gay men and women not allowed to serve? I was a little too young for when it was big in the Clinton administration.

Thanks
 
flynavy
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 8:43 pm



Quoting QXatFAT (Reply 4):
Flynavy, I will say this, thank you for serving our country. I do not care what sexual orientation you are, just thank you for the service that you gave.

Danke schön!

Quoting QXatFAT (Reply 4):
...is hard to believe sometimes.

Perhaps to an outsider and someone who has never worn the uniform. But I can tell you that it's the 21st century, and it's time for the policy to go. It is a detriment to national security.

The best way to describe DADT is this...

"My country would give me a medal for killing a man, but would fire me from my post for loving one."
 
QXatFAT
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 8:43 pm



Quoting Flynavy (Reply 3):

Thank you. Interesting read...with that said...

I think it is kind of lame that DADT was implimeted but this statement ...

Quoting Mariner (Thread starter):
our service members are professionals who are able to work together effectively despite differences in race, gender, religion, and sexuality.

...is hard to believe sometimes. Seeing what has been happening in Iraq and Afganistan, there are people that screw things up as well. Hearing on the news what some of our professional service men do to the nationals of these countries is sick! I would just hate to read in the papers what would happen if service men and women were beat up or even killed over their sexual orientation. To me, that would hurt moral more than anything.

I am not saying that all service men and women are like that, but there is always the rotten apples that spoil the whole bunch.

Flynavy, I will say this, thank you for serving our country. I do not care what sexual orientation you are, just thank you for the service that you gave.
 
Ken777
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 9:34 pm

I was in the Navy, starting in '66. During that time a gay person could easily avoid the draft by being honest on their application form. For someone to serve during that time they actually wanted to serve.

My first ship was the USS Long Beach, with a crew of 1,200+. I would be a fool if I thought that there was not at least one gay man on that ship. My conservative guess would be 2% to 3%. During my time on that ship there was not one problem. Nor was there on my second ship.

As for Obama, I believe that he will remember the problems Clinton had with this issue and he will avoid it for a while. It stopped Clinton's political honeymoon dead in its tracks and, on hindsight, was dumb timing. Obama needs this to come up to him from the DoD with full support in order for it to have a political chance. It's a shame, but I believe that is the political reality.
 
Charles79
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 10:57 pm



Quoting Flynavy (Reply 5):
Perhaps to an outsider and someone who has never worn the uniform. But I can tell you that it's the 21st century, and it's time for the policy to go. It is a detriment to national security.

Completely agree. As a recently separated gay officer I can tell you that the services are ready to repeal DADT. I was always under the radar but we had a Major and a few O-5s who were so obvious they made the Village People look masculine. No one bothered them...in fact, they were very much part of the military community and accepted as such.

Having said that, I do acknowledge that repealing DADT is not a top priority for the new administration, given that they got 2 wars plus an economic crisis to deal with. If anything it might become a priority for the ARMY as that service has been hit hard by the loss of key personnel because of the DADT policy. I've been told by friends that even the strongest homophobes there are starting to make concessions so that key positions remain manned.
 
LH423
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 11:24 pm



Quoting Ken777 (Reply 6):
As for Obama, I believe that he will remember the problems Clinton had with this issue and he will avoid it for a while.

Yes, but admittedly, times have changes. CNN, while covering this story, showed that back when DADT was being debated, only 45% of Americans supported gays being open in the military. In 15 years that number has jumped to 75%.

While it won't be a top priority with the economy and the wars, it's something whose time has clearly come and when it does come up I fully expect it to be repealed.

LH423
 
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Wed Nov 19, 2008 11:53 pm



Quoting Flynavy (Reply 1):
I personally know an Arabic linguist who was discharged under DADT. The government (that means you, the taxpayer) spent millions of dollars on him. I'd even venture to say DADT is a threat to national security.

Some lawmakers agree with you. In 2007, it was reported that 58 Arabic translators had been discharged for being gay:

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/...merica/NA-GEN-US-Military-Gays.php

IHT: "Lawmakers who say the military has kicked out 58 Arabic linguists because they were gay want the Pentagon to explain how it can afford to let the valuable language specialists go.

"Seizing on the latest discharges, involving three specialists, members of the House of Representatives wrote the House Armed Services Committee chairman that the continued loss of such "capable, highly skilled Arabic linguists continues to compromise our national security during time of war."


At the time, Secretary Gates said he had no plans to review the policy.

mariner
 
flynavy
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 12:00 am



Quoting LH423 (Reply 8):
In 15 years that number has jumped to 75%.

That might have something to do with the fact we're in two wars. Ironic, isn't it?
 
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akiss20
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 12:06 am



Quoting Flynavy (Reply 10):
Quoting LH423 (Reply 8):
In 15 years that number has jumped to 75%.

That might have something to do with the fact we're in two wars. Ironic, isn't it?

Very cynical

Gays are only liked when its useful to like them? Part of me agrees, but I hope i'd like to think that the statistics show a societal shift rather than a temporary increase in demand.
 
dxing
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 1:52 am



Quoting Flynavy (Reply 1):
I can honestly say that had I been discharged under DADT, it would have been a detriment to my unit and to the country as I was a vital asset to my command. Had they lost me, it would have hurt them.

"The graveyards are full of indispensable men." -- Charles de Gaulle, 1890-1970

Quoting LH423 (Reply 8):
In 15 years that number has jumped to 75%.

I wonder what that survey would show if it were taken only within the military? Those are the people who will have to deal with the policy, not some societal idealist walking the streets of New York.
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:07 am

I'm sorry, but I think the gay community is setting themselves up to be very disappointed by President Obama, on this issue.

I will bet everyone in this forum $100 that in 2010, DADT will still be official policy. I think Obama will commission some studies, he will pay lip service to repealing the policy, and then he will just sit on the issue for a few years.

He has positioned himself very carefully, and while I have no doubt that in his heart he truly opposes DADT, he is also a pragmatic politician. There are a lot of of things on his plate, that he wants to get accomplished in the next four years. Some of those big ticket items are going to require the expenditure of a lot of political capital.... and he simply cannot afford to risk a firestorm over repealing DADT, if it means galvanizing the opposition against other important initiatives. Repealing DADT is clearly not that high on his priority list.

So I honestly don't think the policy will be repealed for at least another two years. And if, god forbid, his first two years go poorly, the time line could slip even further. But, I worry that some are expecting immediate action on this, and I don't think there is much evidence to support such hope.

-UH60
 
travelin man
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:11 am



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 13):
So I honestly don't think the policy will be repealed for at least another two years. And if, god forbid, his first two years go poorly, the time line could slip even further. But, I worry that some are expecting immediate action on this, and I don't think there is much evidence to support such hope.

All he has to do is not enforce it. He is Commander in Chief after all.
 
vikkyvik
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:24 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 12):
"The graveyards are full of indispensable men." -- Charles de Gaulle, 1890-1970

What exactly do you mean by that? Just curious...

Quoting DXing (Reply 12):
I wonder what that survey would show if it were taken only within the military? Those are the people who will have to deal with the policy, not some societal idealist walking the streets of New York.

In the absence of a draft, folks are perfectly free to not join the military, if they are unable to serve with gay people, for some reason. Same as any other job, really.
 
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mariner
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:28 am



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 13):
I worry that some are expecting immediate action on this, and I don't think there is much evidence to support such hope.

I think people are much more realistic than that.

Quoting DXing (Reply 12):
I wonder what that survey would show if it were taken only within the military?

When they changed the law in Britain, the majority of military (serving) people were dead-set against it.

Things change:

http://www.rense.com/general67/oeo.htm

Sunday Times: British Army Gay Recruitment Drive Launched"

"The army came out in style this weekend when it launched a recruitment drive aimed at tempting more gays, lesbians, transvestites and even transsexuals into the ranks.

It set up a recruitment stall at the Gay Pride festival in Manchester, backing its new-found commitment to homosexual rights by sending 10 gay and lesbian soldiers in combat trousers and tight T-shirts to join thousands of marchers on a five-mile parade through the city."


mariner
 
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:33 am



Quoting AKiss20 (Reply 11):

Gays are only liked when its useful to like them? Part of me agrees, but I hope i'd like to think that the statistics show a societal shift rather than a temporary increase in demand.

Oh, I had a friend who got sent back to Iraq and he was gay. So he told his superiors about this. Basically, they told him that they didn't care and he was going back, anyway.

DADT was used by the military repeatedly to its own benefit. They'd use it to kick out people they didn't like and then conveniently ignore it if someone was needed. That's one of many reasons why it needs to go.

Quoting DXing (Reply 12):

I wonder what that survey would show if it were taken only within the military? Those are the people who will have to deal with the policy, not some societal idealist walking the streets of New York.

Doesn't matter what they think. They are there to serve US. That's why it's called the "Service." If the Royal Armed Forces, a rather effective bunch, and the Israeli Self-Defense Force, also a rather effective bunch, and the German Army, etc. all have gays openly serving, then we should be able to pull it off, too.
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:40 am



Quoting Travelin man (Reply 14):
All he has to do is not enforce it. He is Commander in Chief after all.

I think a lot of people have a overly grand image of what a "Commander in Chief" does. Yes, he is the highest person in the chain-of-command. Yes he has the power, specifically through appointed subordinates, to run the military. But he's not a god.

Much of what is done in his name in the military - like the commissioning of officers, or the promotion of flag officers - is done by the military staff. So while his name is on those orders, he's not the one running the show.

President Obama will not be enforcing/not enforcing DADT. He will appoint civilian leadership and JCS members to conduct his policy. So therefore, it is important to see who he appoints to these positions, to know how fast DADT will be repealed.

But to give us insight into what he's looking for in the JCS, he is on record as having said:

Quote:
What I want, are members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff who are making decisions based on what strengthens our military and what is going to make us safer, not ideology.



Quote:
"I would never make this a litmus test for the Joint Chief of Staff. Obviously, there are so many issues that a member of the Joint Chiefs has to deal with, and my paramount obligation is to get the best possible people to keep America safe.

So you need better understanding of the chain-of-command structure, to understand how this policy would be repealed.

President Obama would first consult the JCS, CoSs of each branch, FCCs, his appointed civilian leaders, and ask for the advice of congressional and nongovernmental organization leadership.. The outcome of these discussions would most likely be the commissioning of a study. The result of the study would be privately published and distributed amongst the decision makers. After another internal discussion, an initial decision of what to do, would be made. Once this decision was made, the JCS would be tasked with establishing a method of implementing the new policy. Once the implementation method is approved.... is when the new policy would come into effect.

So it's not cut-and-dry. There are a lot of people weighing in, and when the policy is eventually repealed, the administration will undoubtedly receive some flak. That is why I don't see President Obama choosing to wage that war early on, especially when he needs to spend his political capital wisely.

Two years, minimum, in my assessment. But I've been wrong before, and I would gladly be wrong on this issue. I'm just saying: don't pop the champagne bottles too soon.

-UH60
 
WunalaYann
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:40 am



Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 15):
What exactly do you mean by that? Just curious...

I think he means that we all like to think we are indispensable but that we may not be. That was not de Gaulle's finest statement by any means...
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:53 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 12):
I wonder what that survey would show if it were taken only within the military? Those are the people who will have to deal with the policy, not some societal idealist walking the streets of New York.

I cannot speak for all branches, but the Army Times published their summer 2008 comprehensive survey, which asked a huge range of questions, including feelings on gays serving openly. This survey was different from past ones, since the Times only surveyed active and guard duty soldiers, and it showed a strong move of opinion on the issue.

48% were in favor of allowing gays to serve openly
39% were opposed
13% did not know or answer

Broken down to ranks below E6 and O5 - soldiers who were naturally younger and held less time in service - 58% of soldiers were in favor, 32% opposed.

It's obvious that outside of the old dogs, the issue isn't what it use to be. And that our younger soldiers are professional enough to see beyond demagoguery, and judge their fellow soldiers on their abilities, not their sexual orientation.

-UH60
 
dxing
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:57 am



Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 15):
What exactly do you mean by that? Just curious...



Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 19):
I think he means that we all like to think we are indispensable but that we may not be. That was not de Gaulle's finest statement by any means...

Did he actually have a finest?  wink  Regardless your reply is correct. Anyone who thinks that he is that indespensable to a unit is setting himself up for a disappointing surprise and I don't care what their specialty is.

Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 15):
In the absence of a draft, folks are perfectly free to not join the military

Which might make for some interesting recruiting numbers. It might be interesting to see what effect just quietly lifting the ban versus trumpeting it would be.

Quoting Mariner (Reply 16):
When they changed the law in Britain, the majority of military (serving) people were dead-set against it.

The mindset between the two countries is just different.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 17):
Doesn't matter what they think. They are there to serve US. That's why it's called the "Service."

I can see you have little understanding of what moral means in the service.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 17):
then we should be able to pull it off, too.

$5 a gallon gas, should we go that way? They get to wait in line for medical care, should we go that way too? Just because its good for goose does not automatically mean it is good for the gander.
 
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mariner
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:02 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 21):
The mindset between the two countries is just different.

I have lived in both countries for extended periods of time. I haven't noticed "the mindset" on matters gay to be particularly different.

mariner
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:03 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 21):
I can see you have little understanding of what moral means in the service.

Well morale is very important.

But I would think that serving extended 15 month combat tours, with as little as 3 months rest period between rotations, would be more detrimental to the morale of soldiers. Certainly more so, than say, learning the fine soldier to your right, who you have served with honorably in battle, is gay.

Yes?

-UH60
 
ADXMatt
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:20 am

President elect Obama has already stated that he is against DADT but will not do anything unless he has the support of the higer ups in the military. Sorry I don't have a source and I'm going by my memory.

I don't know why anybody would join the military under the restrictions of DADT. Not being able to live your life openly and always being afraid that if someone found out you could lose your job, benefits, and pension.

But alot of gay men and lesbians do join. I've dated a few when i was in my 20's and living in DC. This was in the early years of DADT.

it was just like any other job as it depends on your boss and if no one in your group complains it's a non issue. It's when someone else or a superior makes it an issue. That was then, I don't know the climate now that we're at war. I'm sure it's pretty much the same.

IIRC didn't bush order a stop gap order on discharging gays until after the war? it was after the linguists being fired hit the news.
 
QXatFAT
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:22 am



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 20):
And that our younger soldiers are professional enough to see beyond demagoguery, and judge their fellow soldiers on their abilities, not their sexual orientation.

I would like to hope so but part of me doesnt believe it. Just hearing and reading what happens to innocent people in these other countries we are in by some of our own military members what are real sickos. I know not all are like that but ill I am saying is, it takes only one to do a "hate" crime. It saddens me at the possibility of it. I would hope that they are professional enough but even the professional are not always professional 100% of the time.

UH60, thank you once again for serving our country. I have always admired you for that and always respected you for it. Thank you
 
vikkyvik
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:32 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 21):

I can see you have little understanding of what moral means in the service.

Morale, as pointed out, is obviously important.

But if a soldier's morale suffers because his or her fellow soldiers may be gay, then perhaps that soldier shouldn't be serving in the military. I mean, I'd hate to think what other random things could affect his morale as well.

Quoting DXing (Reply 21):
Did he actually have a finest? wink Regardless your reply is correct. Anyone who thinks that he is that indespensable to a unit is setting himself up for a disappointing surprise and I don't care what their specialty is.

Thanks for the clarification. I didn't want to make any inflammatory statement before I understood the context. And I'm glad I didn't.

Quoting DXing (Reply 21):
Which might make for some interesting recruiting numbers. It might be interesting to see what effect just quietly lifting the ban versus trumpeting it would be.

I have no problem with them doing it quietly.
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:35 am



Quoting QXatFAT (Reply 25):
I would like to hope so but part of me doesnt believe it. Just hearing and reading what happens to innocent people in these other countries we are in by some of our own military members what are real sickos. I know not all are like that but ill I am saying is, it takes only one to do a "hate" crime. It saddens me at the possibility of it. I would hope that they are professional enough but even the professional are not always professional 100% of the time.

Wait, I am a little confused here.

Are you arguing that there are sick individuals in the military, and therefore, it would be unwise to allow gays to serve openly... because they may become a victim of a hate crime?

...Stay in the closet, or you could get your skull bashed in. Wow, that kind of sounds like a horrible threat. Not to mention a very low opinion of us.

-UH60
 
QXatFAT
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:39 am



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 27):
Are you arguing that there are sick individuals in the military, and therefore, it would be unwise to allow gays to serve openly... because they may become a victim of a hate crime?

Here is what I think on the issue...

I am all for gays serving in the military if they so choose. If they choose to serve our country, I am all for it.

I am not threatining anyone by any means. I am just worried as to what can happen because there is always that one individual that can ruin it for everyone.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 27):
Not to mention a very low opinion of us.

That is where you went overboard and read WAY into my post.
 
dxing
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:47 am



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 20):
It's obvious that outside of the old dogs, the issue isn't what it use to be. And that our younger soldiers are professional enough to see beyond demagoguery, and judge their fellow soldiers on their abilities, not their sexual orientation.

True, all things are subject to change. By the survey it's still below 50%. The day it goes over 50% change it.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 23):
Well morale is very important.

Damn spell check  irked  But of course the miracle cure will happen in the middle of November, of course no year was attached to that statement.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 23):
But I would think that serving extended 15 month combat tours, with as little as 3 months rest period between rotations, would be more detrimental to the morale of soldiers. Certainly more so, than say, learning the fine soldier to your right, who you have served with honorably in battle, is gay.


Yes?

True but if that is what is brining down morale then the ETS is always an option as well. Why not let women serve in combat units on the front line or in the Special Forces?
 
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Moose135
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:58 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 12):
I wonder what that survey would show if it were taken only within the military? Those are the people who will have to deal with the policy, not some societal idealist walking the streets of New York.

And 60 years ago, how many thought it was a bad idea for blacks to serve side by side in the same units as whites? The services got over it, and we eventually ended up with an African-American as Chairman of the JCS.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 18):
President Obama will not be enforcing/not enforcing DADT. He will appoint civilian leadership and JCS members to conduct his policy. So therefore, it is important to see who he appoints to these positions, to know how fast DADT will be repealed

Actually, it's more than that. Since the prohibition against gays serving is contained in the UCMJ, it would take Congressional action to change the law. I agree with you, I wouldn't expect Obama to push for a change early in his term, but I would be surprised if it didn't receive serious consideration down the road.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 17):
DADT was used by the military repeatedly to its own benefit. They'd use it to kick out people they didn't like and then conveniently ignore it if someone was needed. That's one of many reasons why it needs to go.

And a big part of the problem with "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" is that people forget the third part - "Don't Pursue". As long as homosexuals in the military do not disclose their sexual orientations, they should not be investigated and discharged, however this is often not the case.
 
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DocLightning
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:59 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 21):

I can see you have little understanding of what moral means in the service.

The Service is not there to act morally. They are there to act ETHICALLY. Big difference.

And, I will repeat, the mission of the military is to "serve and protect." There is a reason that the CIC is a civilian; the U.S. Armed Forces are always supposed to be subordinate to civilians. That was one reason I got VERY touchy when GWB put on a military uniform during his "Mission Accomplished" stunt. He's not a member of the military and he's not supposed to do that.

Quoting DXing (Reply 21):
$5 a gallon gas, should we go that way? They get to wait in line for medical care, should we go that way too? Just because its good for goose does not automatically mean it is good for the gander.

We're not talking about gas or medical care. We're talking about the military. The argument that putting openly gay servicemembers in the military will reduce its effectiveness. This argument holds no water based on the evidence from other militaries.
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 4:08 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 29):
Why not let women serve in combat units on the front line or in the Special Forces?

Simple: because anyone who doesn't meet the physical criteria for the demands of the job shouldn't be allowed to do it, a concept sexual orientation has nothing to do with. The same reasoning that prohibits people over prescribed height or under vision/hearing requirements from being airline pilots.

Quoting DXing (Reply 29):

True, all things are subject to change. By the survey it's still below 50%. The day it goes over 50% change it.

If the survey is true, a majority of likely peers in their units already have no problem with them serving. So why keep them out until superiors are OK with it as well? If they are professional, they'll do the job and adhere to the requirements of their command accordingly.
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 4:10 am



Quoting DocLightning (Reply 31):
That was one reason I got VERY touchy when GWB put on a military uniform during his "Mission Accomplished" stunt. He's not a member of the military and he's not supposed to do that.

Is a flight suit, really a military uniform? I've seen a number of civilian jackasses (and no I am not calling President Bush a jackass, he's still my boss for a few more months. I am calling other people jackasses) who run around at the local flying club, with a pickle green flight suit.

Did it have a US Flag, rank indicators and branch identifier? If not, then it wasn't a military uniform. Technically.

-UH60
 
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DocLightning
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 4:12 am



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 33):

Did it have a US Flag, rank indicators and branch identifier? If not, then it wasn't a military uniform. Technically.

There was a flag and a name badge and I think a branch identifier that said USAF.

I can't imagine he had a rank identifier. Still, it hit a bit close to the mark for me.
 
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Moose135
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 4:25 am



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 33):
Did it have a US Flag, rank indicators and branch identifier? If not, then it wasn't a military uniform. Technically.

Is a US Flag required? Back in the day, we didn't wear a flag patch on our flight suits, nor branch identifiers. I remember wearing a squadron/wing and SAC patch, and a name badge with my wings and name only, along with rank on the shoulders.

Here's the best photo I could find. Looks like the name patch has a set of wings (are those Navy wings? They don't look like USAF, even though that's what he earned) and what looks to be his name, and a longer line of text, maybe "Commander in Chief"?
 
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 4:28 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 29):
True, all things are subject to change. By the survey it's still below 50%. The day it goes over 50% change it.

Well considering that statistically the percentage of support has continued to rise by anywhere from 2-10% per year... I'd venture to say we can expect the 2009 survey to reflect the 50% line.

What's worth noting is that in 208 only 39% were opposed, while in 2000, over 60% were opposed. I'm proud of that. And I'm proud of the fact that the younger generation is shedding the older generations stubborn bigotry.

Quoting DXing (Reply 29):
Why not let women serve in combat units on the front line or in the Special Forces?

I also have no problem with women serving in combat, hell for the most part, they already do! As long as they meet the physical requirements, then more power to them.

I have flown into combat on numerous occasions with females. I have had female PICs, and as a PIC myself, I have had female PIs. If I did not have confidence in their abilities, I would not have gotten into that cockpit.

In fact, I had a young female private, who was one of my crew chiefs in Iraq. She successfully defended our helicopter, by employing the 240B weapon system, against insurgent RPG and small arms fire. I owe her my life.

And just as I have served with female soldiers in combat, I have served with gay soldiers. One of the best pilots in my old unit, was a man who I saw as a model soldier and pilot. After fostering a strong friendship with him, he told me that he was gay. And it made not a single bit of difference. To this day, I still strive to be the same level of soldier and pilot, that he was.

I would be honored to be considered on the same level as him. And it would be a black day if the Army lost him, simply because of whom he chose to love.

There is more to a person's character, and worth, than their sexual orientation. And it certainly doesn't make them any less of a patriot, or a battle buddy.

-UH60
 
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 4:35 am



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 36):
And just as I have served with female soldiers in combat, I have served with gay soldiers. One of the best pilots in my old unit, was a man who I saw as a model soldier and pilot. After fostering a strong friendship with him, he told me that he was gay. And it made not a single bit of difference. To this day, I still strive to be the same level of soldier and pilot, that he was.

I would be honored to be considered on the same level as him. And it would be a black day if the Army lost him, simply because of whom he chose to love.

There is more to a person's character, and worth, than their sexual orientation. And it certainly doesn't make them any less of a patriot, or a battle buddy.

I applaud your honesty and candor. If everyone felt as you, this world would truly be a better place. Till then, you lead by example. Bravo.
 
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 4:37 am

Quoting Moose135 (Reply 35):

I am not 100% positive, but in Iraq we were required to present the US flag in a visible location, to identify ourselves as a military person. USAF personnel also wore the US flag.

And if you look at this photo, you can see the pilot who flew with him, had a US flag clearly visible. He also has his rank - CDR - clearly visible.



Anyway, I wish I could get a close up of that patch. Depending on what it says, would make all the difference. I have a few patches, that have customized logo/wording... but it would not serve as my official name tag. Indeed, any official name tag must present rank, branch and name. I don't know what his said.

But really, what else could the guy have worn? Aside from the photo op, the flight suit is necessary for safety and survival reasons. Flying in an Armani suit has never been acceptable DoD policy.  

[Edited 2008-11-19 20:45:33]
 
dxing
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:20 am



Quoting Moose135 (Reply 30):
And 60 years ago, how many thought it was a bad idea for blacks to serve side by side in the same units as whites? The services got over it, and we eventually ended up with an African-American as Chairman of the JCS.

Again as we saw in prop 8 in California, not even many blacks equate race as being equal to sexual preference. More on that below.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 31):
And, I will repeat, the mission of the military is to "serve and protect."

I thought that was the police?

Oath of Enlistment army:

I, (NAME), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 31):
The argument that putting openly gay servicemembers in the military will reduce its effectiveness. This argument holds no water based on the evidence from other militaries.

Other militaries do many things differently. That does not mean it's best for ours.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 32):
Simple: because anyone who doesn't meet the physical criteria for the demands of the job shouldn't be allowed to do it, a concept sexual orientation has nothing to do with.

I knew of several women in the military when I was serving oh so long ago now that could have passed the physicals with flying colors.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 32):
If the survey is true, a majority of likely peers in their units already have no problem with them serving. So why keep them out until superiors are OK with it as well? If they are professional, they'll do the job and adhere to the requirements of their command accordingly.

Well let me put is different way since my point didn't get made. If we are going to make, as of right now, the majority uncomfortable to reward the minority, then why stop with allowing gays to openly serve? If as you say:

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 36):
There is more to a person's character, and worth, than their sexual orientation. And it certainly doesn't make them any less of a patriot, or a battle buddy.

Then why not wipe out all sexual orientation limits. Allow women to serve anywhere they can as long as they meet the qualifications? If we are going to do that then the next step is to abolish all reference to gender so our transgender citizens can serve too. Barracks, latrines, showers, uniforms, standards, you name it should be unisex. That way we've made things equal in that everyone is equally uncomfortable. Sounds fair doesn't it? Why have seperate quarters on a ship? It just makes things more difficult for everyone. Subs have limited space as it is so open it all up. As long as the female doesn't have a problem why should the males? Now you might have some explaining to do to your wife if you get posted on some long assignment and your bunk buddy is a good looking female but it's just part of the rigors of the job right?

Sexual preference is that, sexual preference. It does not equate to race since as stated several times in numerous threads, you can hide gay all day but lets see you hide black. It will have an affect on morale at some point but again, why not make the majority uncomfortable so the minority will be happy in a volunteer position that was clear on the job requirements before you raised your hand?
 
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:32 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 39):
you can hide gay all day but lets see you hide black

That proves nothing. You can't see deafness. You can't see Jewish. Discrimination is wrong regardless to whom it against.
 
Mir
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:38 am



Quoting QXatFAT (Reply 28):
I am just worried as to what can happen because there is always that one individual that can ruin it for everyone.

Sure. But are you going to base a policy for a military the size of the US on the potential actions of a few idiots? That would be ridiculous. You go with the one that makes sense for most, and if some idiot decides to be stupid and divert from that policy, you deal with them accordingly (something that the military can be very good at).

Gays do not need any special protection from others in the military, and to insinuate that they do, as you did, is kind of demeaning, both to gays and to the sensible men and women who make up 98% of our armed forces and who, though they may disagree with homosexuality, will never go against one of their own. It's demeaning to gays because it implies that they can't stand up for themselves - nothing could be further from the truth. It's demeaning to the men and women of the armed forces because it implies that all of them have the potential to commit acts of violence against gays. I trust that our military is better than that.

-Mir
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:47 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 39):
Barracks, latrines, showers, uniforms, standards, you name it should be unisex.

lol... well maybe not way back when you were a Joe, but today, they pretty much are. Many coed barracks exist, and in the field, soldiers utilize the same amenities. Yes, you will take a shit with a female in the next stall/jon.

See, regardless of your personal loathing for gays or females, or whatever, things are far different in the military, than decades ago when you served. Every year soldiers become less influenced by the ignorant thoughts of the latter generations.

Look at those polls. Almost 3/5 of soldiers E6/O5, and below, are comfortable with this. And remember that the overall poll took evenly from all ranks... and does not reflect that the huge portion of the military lay within those lower ranks. Change is coming, and the old dogs like yourself will either have to learn to deal, or get out.

Like I said, I am very proud of the soldiers I serve with, and the soldiers I lead. I am not willing to shit on them because of their orientation. Nor am I willing to toss them to the street because it.

Oh, and you conveniently skipped over the fellow pilot, I mentioned. Under your vision for the military, he wasn't welcomed. I cannot imagine hating him, and no longer aspiring to be like him, simply because he happened to be gay. I cannot imagine being so limited in my views.

Quoting DXing (Reply 39):
Sexual preference is that, sexual preference. It does not equate to race since as stated several times in numerous threads, you can hide gay all day but lets see you hide black. It will have an affect on morale at some point but again, why not make the majority uncomfortable so the minority will be happy in a volunteer position that was clear on the job requirements before you raised your hand?

Yeah, and those who are unwilling to cope with the change can find their way to the door.

Hell, people like you have said all too eagerly, "If they can't deal with DADT, then don't serve." Well the argument flows both way. For people who share your view, they are more than welcomed to get out.

And honestly, I would encourage them to do so. Because if they can't handle having a gay soldier within the ranks, then how the fuck can they handle the far more challenging task of combat?

And please, drop the whole "being gay is a choice" argument. It's 2008.

-UH60
 
dxing
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 6:22 am

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 40):
That proves nothing.

The argument is, as it is written here, "gay is the new black". It's not, "Gay is the new deaf" or "Gay is the new Jew". My statement stands that you can hide gay all day but you can't hide black for a second. I've lost count at how many times we have been told that we cannot look at someone and decide on the face of things that the person is gay. I can look at a black person and know instantly that the person is black.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 42):
See, regardless of your personal loathing for gays or females

I have no loathing for gays or females. I think I've made that clear more than a few times. If the rules are changed I abide by the new rules.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 42):
I cannot imagine hating him, and no longer aspiring to be like him

Nor would I expect you too. What I wonder is what part of the rules he didnt understand when he signed up?

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 42):
Hell, people like you have said all too eagerly, "If they can't deal with DADT, then don't serve.

I have never said that. I agree with DADT since I don't care with whom anyone sleeps with and would rather not know to begin with. The conflict comes in where under current rules a gay person is violating the rules from the start of his or her enlistment or commission by commiting fraud.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 42):
And please, drop the whole "being gay is a choice" argument

   If you can find a thread where I made that statement please bring it forth. The gay life style is a choice just as the married life style is a choice as is the single life style a choice. With each choice comes a different set of restrictions.

[Edited 2008-11-19 22:28:02]
 
WunalaYann
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 6:23 am



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 42):
And please, drop the whole "being gay is a choice" argument. It's 2008.

As much as I agree with your statement, I would like to invite you to post in some of the gay-in-society threads that are going on at the moment. Methinks you would be quite astounded to read some of the stuff that finds its way in there.

Please keep up the great posts, your hands-on views from an institution as respected as the US Army on a topic as sensitive and divisive as gay rights are oh so welcome.  thumbsup 
 
EWRCabincrew
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 6:33 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 43):
I can look at a black person and know instantly that the person is black.

Of course, but you can't tell if someone is deaf by looking at them. Or Jewish by looking at them (sans religious adornment). Discrimination is still wrong.

Quoting DXing (Reply 43):
The gay life style is a choice just as the married life style is a choice as is the single life style a choice. With each choice comes a different set of restrictions.

Then make the playing field equal for all lifestyles whether they are single or married. Based solely on that.
 
WunalaYann
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 6:38 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 43):
I can look at a black person and know instantly that the person is black.

Well. There's always Michael Jackson.  Wink

Just trying to lighten up the mood, guys.

I'm actually very happy to see that the discussion is a lot more tame and mutually understanding than in other threads.  thumbsup 
 
dxing
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 6:44 am

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 45):
Discrimination is still wrong.

A person can be born with hearing and then become deaf, I'm headed that way in my old age. A person can renounce Judiasm tomorrow so what you are basing your argument on is not on the same order as "born with it die with it". Yes I could discriminate against either of those but not in the same way that I could discriminate against a gay or against a black if that were in me to do so which it is not. You can say all forms of discrimiation are wrong and you are absolutely right and I agree with you. But you can't associate one group with another since one group has genes that visually make them stand out, another has genes that are there but don't stand out. A third that may not be gene based but due to a life event, and a fourth that can be changed on a whim. It's worse than apples and oranges, you've thrown in mangos and pears.

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 45):
Then make the playing field equal for all lifestyles whether they are single or married. Based solely on that.

You can't because of the restrictions involved in each life style choice. I left out hetro single, gay single, transgender single, living together, and probably a few others. Each life style choice has its restrictions. There are simply too many variables to make one size fits all.

[Edited 2008-11-19 22:58:20]
 
Mir
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 6:51 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 43):
What I wonder is what part of the rules he didnt understand when he signed up?

That's a problem with the rules, not with him. We need more people like that in the military, and to try and block them out for something as silly as being gay isn't serving the country well at all.

It's 2008, and the rules need changing.

-Mir
 
dxing
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RE: Obama And Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Thu Nov 20, 2008 6:59 am



Quoting Mir (Reply 48):
It's 2008, and the rules need changing.

And when they are I will abide by them but your argument amounts to saying that I robbed the bank hoping that bank robbing laws would be repealed.

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