…or maybe it does. The report, entitled Report of the Comprehensive Review of the Issues Associated with a Repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”, was released yesterday (available here, or at the DoD DADT website). The following is a list of highlights from the report.
Statistics and Questions
As noted previously, fun with numbers will likely allow both sides of the DADT debate to cite the report in favor of their position.
For example, one of the most frequently cited statistics (as here and here) is the statement that
When asked about how having a Service member in their immediate unit who said he or she is gay would affect the unit’s ability to “work together to get the job done,” 70% of Service members predicted it would have a positive, mixed, or no effect.
However, using precisely the same numbers, one could also say
When asked about how having a Service member in their immediate unit who said he or she is gay would affect the unit’s ability to “work together to get the job done,” 62% of Service members predicted it would have a negative or mixed effect.
Obviously, the second statement holds quite a different meaning than the first – yet both are entirely accurate.
One of the main disconnects is that many reports have conflated Read more
Media articles and reports continue to highlight the common misunderstanding about the policies, rules, and perspectives about homosexuality in the military.
For example, in discussing the history of homosexual policy in the military, an Associated Press report recently said
In the end, Congress agreed to let gays serve only if their sexual orientation remained secret.
While it is a common belief, the statement is flatly wrong.
The law Congress passed banned homosexuals from military service without qualification. The “secret” part, more commonly known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” was the Read more
Is marijuana the next DADT? The increasing (state) legality of the otherwise (federally) illegal drug indicates a growing trend of “normalizing” marijuana usage, and it is not going unnoticed by the military.
An official Air Force news release at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, notes marijuana is “not welcome here,” despite its sometimes legality in the surrounding state.
Schriever commander Colonel Wayne Montheith wrote a memo noting, among other points,
Marijuana, prescribed or otherwise obtained, may not be used, possessed, distributed, nor introduced on Schriever AFB, a Federal military [installation].
The presence of marijuana on Schriever AFB [is] a risk to good order and discipline and to the Air Force mission.
The policy applies to any person on Schriever, including civilians — who could be banned from the base for bringing even state-approved marijuana with them.
In a similar vein to the federalist treatment of homosexual marriage, Read more
According to news reports, former Army Lt Dan Choi (once again) chained himself to the White House perimeter fence, resulting in arrest by the park police. Rather than walking away in cuffs, he apparently chose to “go limp.” Last time Choi did the same thing he was actually still an officer in the Army.
Choi was discharged last summer under DADT, and he recently tried to re-enlist during the 8-day injunction of the law banning homosexuals from serving in the military.
The next time Choi tries to sign up with the military, it should show him the door, regardless of the status of DADT. He apparently lacks the strength of character to Read more
The Log Cabin Republicans have asked the US Supreme Court to reinstate Judge Virginia Phillips’ injunction prohibiting the US military from enforcing its ban on open homosexual service. The military has said DADT will continue to be enforced during appeal.
In perhaps the supremest of ironies, the request lands on the desk of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy. Some have speculated that DADT would be 4-4 at the court, with Kennedy being the deciding vote.
The filing demonstrates a self-righteous and self-centered Read more
An Associated Press article on the recent back-and-forth over the policy known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” contained little new on the subject, save a heretofore untold observation by the Obama administration:
Officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because the administration’s path is still uncertain said the administration has never fully acknowledged that while a majority of Americans may want the ban lifted, a majority of the uniformed military might not. (emphasis added)
This supposition that members of the military may oppose open homosexual service — despite how the civilian society may feel — may have been the fear Read more
After the issuing judge denied a stay, the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals granted the government’s plea for an emergency stay of her injunction against enforcing the current military policy/US law on homosexuals in military service. The temporary stay can be challenged by the Plaintiff Log Cabin Republicans on Monday.
The short-term stay added more confusion to the military’s current policy, which the Department of Justice said was one of the reasons it sought the stay to begin with.
US District Court Judge Virginia Phillips has ruled the policy known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” violates the First and Fifth Amendments to the US Constitution and has issued an injunction prohibiting its enforcement. According to reports, Judge Phillips made the following military analyses:
Phillips [said] the policy doesn’t help military readiness and instead has a “direct and deleterious effect” on the armed services by hurting recruiting when the country is at war and requiring the discharge of service members with critical skills and training.
Phillips’ ruling referred to both the US law banning Read more