Chapter 4: “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: 1993”
To assist researchers interested in the details of various Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Pursue litigations, the following sources are given. In many cases, it is possible to study the details described in the plaintiff's (and government's or judge's) own words.
Richard Dirk Selland: Stanford site for this plaintiff (see especially the Board of Inquiry's report for a detailed example of how the military interprets DADT and the lengths to which it will go)
Joseph Steffan: Stanford site for this plaintiff (see also note 1 below).
Tracy W. Thorne: Stanford site for this plaintiff
The Stanford legal papers contain pdf files requiring adobe acrobat reader. The reader alone may be downloaded free of charge.
Several former servicemembers (and plaintiffs) have their own personally authored links from Servicemembers' Legal Defense Network. Look for the link on the left side of the SLDN home page. There also some valuable links at “Dave’s” site at http://www.gaymilitay.org/policy.htm.
The footnotes for DADT Chapter 4 "Don't Ask, Don't Tell: 1993" now follow in page-number sequence. (In the iUniverse printing, they start with number 163 as Endnotes; “++ 162”). For ease of reference and searching on the Internet, some material from the Chapter 4 text itself may have been restated here.
1 Joseph Steffan, Honor Bound: A Gay American Fights for the Right to Serve his Country (New York: Villard, 1992). The link for Steffan’s case in 1989 at Stanford law school is this.
the years, there have been a number of gay service academy members discharged.
But some have graduated. See the SAGALA
site. Shilts, in Conduct Unbecoming, recounts
several other tales. The most chilling may be the account of Dan Stratford, forced to resign from
the U.S. Air Force Academy two weeks before graduating in 1979 because of his
homosexual “associations,” uncovered by a roommate who found a letter from a
homosexual in his room. Unlike
1b A general comment based on previous chapters of my book. For Chapter 1: I suppose that when I told William and Mary that I was a “latent” homosexual in 1961, the use of the word “latent” might have “rebutted the presumption” of homosexual conduct or a propensity for such conduct, but I am not aware that this has ever been tested in court (rebuttable presumption is discussed later in this chapter). My own in-service conduct (Chapter 2) probably fell within the legal parameters of avoiding “homosexual conduct” as defined in the DADT policy. Ironically, perhaps, I would earn a Good Conduct Medal at discharge. If someone “told” at a religious presentation (in front of a church body that accepts homosexuality), would this be excepted under the First Amendment freedom of religion? I am not aware that this has ever been tested. But then, what if the “telling” were part of a documentary film? Showing it in a religious setting might not violate DADT, but in a commercial theater or film festival would—and this potentially can cause an indirect but serious First Amendment issue for civilian filmmakers, journalists and writers. For example, a reservist could out himself at a gay community forum, a blogger who attended the forum could mention him on the web, and Google would pick him up if the military ever went fishing. Sometimes it does.
2 Dean Hannotte (editor), We Knew Paul (New York: 9th Street Center, 1990).
3 Urvashi Vaid, Virtual Equality: The Mainstreaming of Gay and Lesbian Liberation (New York: Anchor, 1995), pp 155-167 provides a detailed history.
3a Ch 4, P 141, fn 3. But numerous cases did help set the stage for legal arguments that would follow. Sgt. Ben-Shalom, tossed out of the national guard for openly declaring her lesbianism, would invoke the free speech and "rational basis" arguments of years later; Judge Kennedy, on an appeals court, would invoke the "fears of heterosexual soldiers" argument to defer to the military as early as the late 70's (Shilts, op. cit, p. 367), but her reinstatement in 1976 had been one of the earliest judicial successes against the ban. Hathaway would make an unsuccessful attempt to challenge the UCMJ sodomy law. Perry Watkins would serve, after temporary reinstatement, as the military's only publicly known drag queen. Some historians claim much more was already going on by the time of the Gulf War with the ban than my account here would suggest.
4 Hans Johnson, "The 'Pink' Nazis," The Harvard Gay and Lesbian Review, Summer 1995, Vol II, No. 3, p. 1.
5 M. Sagan, "A Journey into the Heart of Whiteness," Gentlemen's Quarterly, Mar. 1996, pp. 246-257.
6 Randy Shilts, "Thoughtcrimes," in Conduct Unbecoming, op. cit., pp. 375-382.
Also, Frank Rector, The Nazi Extermination of Homosexuals (New York: Stein and Day, 1981).
Lutz van Dijk, Damned Strong Love (New York: Henry Holt, 1995). Translation from German by Elizabeth Crawford.
7a Another important precedent was Robert
Bork, Dronenberg v. Zech (1984), DC Circuit, which
upheld the “old ban” on the grounds of sodomy laws. William N. Eskrdige, Dishonorable Passions: Sodomy Laws in
8 Frank Browning, "The Management of Desire," Mother Jones, March 1993. This essay featured a shower-locker-room shot of naked, baby-bodied Plebes, shoved together all very much enjoying their boyish cohesion.
9 See Philip Brett's essay, "The More Vicious the Society, the
More Vicious the Individual: Peter Grimes and its Message," to
liner notes to Peter Grimes,
10 Steffan, op. cit., p. 54.
11 Virginia Polytechnic Institute's 1996 ROTC brochure (Corps of Cadets) reassuringly describes a gradual decrease in military regimentation during a cadet's four undergraduate years.
12 Shilts, op. cit., pp 512-513.
13 Read Mixner's account of his own family's hostility; A Stranger Among Friends, op. cit., p. 129.
14 Marc Wolinsky and Kevin Sherrill, editors, Gays and the Military: Joseph Steffan versus the United States (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1993), gives all the major affidavits and district court opinion.
Ch 4 P 145, pr. 2: The Navy one time approached Allen Schindler's mother
and actually confused her with the mother of Schindler's killer! There are many
examples of vindictive attitudes towards gays by some military personnel. In
1980, off-duty Marines attacked civilian patrons of a gay bar in
15a In June 2000, SLDN wrote a
letter to the Director of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS, or
In a story by Robert Suro, in The Washington
16 The policy (and UCMJ) also apply to the Coast Guard (officially
part of the Treasury Department), and also to the one other uniformed service,
the Public Health Service. There have actually been prosecutions for sodomy
16a Presumably the same policy (and now DADT) applies to military members who list for specific purposes, such as the Marine Band or other ceremonial organizations.
17 The categories are Honorable, General, Other than Honorable, and Bad Conduct A General Discharge (even when under "Honorable conditions") is often considered stigmatizing by employers. A Bad Conduct requires Courts-Martial and can result in prison after discharge. (There used to be a "Dishonorable Discharge.")
17a However, even Honorable Discharges may be “tainted” by
18 Sexual contact (that is, heterosexual) between officer and enlisted, even in different services, has always been prohibited. Within a command, it is sometimes acceptable between members of the same or nearly the same rank. The Army is more lenient (among heterosexuals) on this issue than are the other services.
19 Shilts, op. cit., p. 565.
20 Shilts, op. cit., pp. 655-662, 696-708, (the Hartwig incident). Government likes to do this. Vanity Fair (article "American Nightmare: The Ballad of Richard Jewell" by Marie Brenner, Feb. 1997 reports that the FBI made up a theory that Jewell was an enraged homosexual designing to attract attention with the Olympic Park bombing; all of these charges Jewell and his attorney emphatically deny. Jewell was cleared.
Marie Brenner had an interesting story in Vanity Fair in 1997 about this:
20a Ch 4 P 147, fn 20: Later the FBI would
turn about face and admit that the same person who planted the Olympic Park
bomb might have bombed a lesbian bar in
20b In April 2005 the real perpetrator, Eric Rudolph, of the bombings (which included not only the Olympics but also the lesbian club, as noted, and two abortion clinics) was apprehended, plead guilty and will be sentenced to four consecutive “life without parole” terms. Rudolph is what journalists (and this gets into my second, post-9/11 DADT book) calls “the other kind of terrorist” (compared Osama bin Laden) – the extreme right wing (sometimes “Christian” (??)) fanatic who acts essentially alone with relatively little organizational support even in a decentralized structure – like Timothy McVeigh or the Unabomber or perhaps the DC area snipers in 2002.
21 Charles Robb, "A Question of Simple Honesty,"
22 One female soldier, desiring discharge before deployment, was asked to produce a "marriage" certificate proving she was married to another woman! Steffan, op. cit., p. 222.
23 This would include posting personals in gay newspapers or even
private computer bulletin boards. In
In January 2001, there were reports of an investigation at a Marine base at 29 Palms Calif., that some Marines would be investigated for posing (“off-duty” in civilian establishments) for a pornographic web site, apparently an explicit UCMJ violation. The posings may have been anonymous but that makes no difference legally, and there are reports that military insignia were included in the pictures. The risk could be that the military, if there is a provable violation of law, might be able to subpoena records or evidence from a civilian business, so far an infrequent occurrence as a whole. Repeated problems could tempt conservative members in Congress to want to give the military more authority to inspect civilian premises. See also note 15a above.
24 There were demonstrations against resumption of registration.
25 Queerlaw (listserver)
reports that background investigations, at least until recently (about 1990),
attempted to ferret out any hint of homosexuality for almost all federal
clearances, although no investigator ever questioned any of my acquaintances
about this back in the 60's and 70's. Queerlaw
also reports that an isolated spy case in
25b James Adams (The Next World War: Computers Are the Weapons and
the Front Line Is Everywhere. Simon & Schuster, 1998) points out that
the British government was embarrassed by several Soviet spies "who were
also homosexuals"; nevertheless the British government openly advertised
in the 1990's (under John Major) that "open" homosexuals were welcome
to apply for Security Service (0-0-7??) jobs. Oh, what does it mean to be a
man, James Bond (Ian Flemming)? Anyway, there have
been rare problems with gays as security risks, but it would surprise both Tall
Gunner Joe McCarthy and J. Edgar Hoover (and Clyde Tolson)
how infrequent this is. And, certainly the title of
26 Daniel Baker, Sean Strub, and Bill Henning, Cracking the Corporate Closet (New York, Harper Business, 1995), pp 30-36. It is an article of common sense, that in certain industries employers who must sell to the Pentagon or to members of the military will (regardless of legal non-discrimination civilian employment requirements) prefer ex-military personnel (at least for sales or some executive positions) to help "get business," an artifact that would work against females as well as against gays.
27 ACLU, The Rights of Lesbians and Gay Men (Carbondale, Southern Illinois University, 1992), p. 30.
Frank Buttino, A Special Agent: Gay and Inside the FBI (New York: William Morrow, 1993).
Bob Von Sternberg, “No simple solution in fire chief case”
Minneapolis Star Tribune,
28 Harvey Friedman, "An Open Letter to President Clinton," The
29 James Holobaugh, Torn Allegiances (Boston: Alyson, 1993). Most ROTC students, however, do not have full tuition scholarships and sometimes have only reserve obligations upon graduation.
30 Amy Waldman, "GI's: Not Your Average Joes,"
31 Tom Swann, Posting on
31b Tom Swann had a book published in 2003: Swann, Thomas A. The
Tom Swann Story: For a Greater Good.
32 Randy Shilts, Conduct Unbecoming, op. cit., 1993/94), p. 287 and Robert Le Blanc, working papers supplied to me (1996).
32a Robert Le Blanc is working on a book project that he describes here. You can download a “rough draft” of his book free from his website, “A Marine’s Diary”. He has a new book called “A Marine’s Diary” viewable online; go to the review here.
33 Tom Swann, personal notes.
34 Robert Graham, Military Secret (Dallas:
Monument, 1993). This book is practically a diary of his service during
Desert Shield and Desert Storm. Interesting is his mention of the chess games,
and the discomfort caused by heavy cigarette smoking of other sailors in a
confined environment. In fact, the military and Veterans Administration spend
much more on smoking-related illness than on AIDS. 32% of the military
population smokes cigarettes, compared to 22% if civilians (NBC
35 Some observers commented that the order and cleanliness of military life should appeal to gay men. This is hardly true of me; I am more like a Jabba the Hutt!
36 Some commentators note that interracial marriages are relatively more common among military people than the general public. White servicemembers are more likely to report to African-American superiors than are their civilian counterparts. Military servicemembers will call each other by names that would sound offensive in civilian society but may not be so interpreted in a cohesive unit. There have been scattered reports of racial discrimination in officer promotion, especially in Marines Corps OCS. In 1999, the Pentagon released a study which admitted that non-white soldiers are not as confident of the military's progress in completely eliminating "institutionalized" racial discrimination as the Pentagon had thought.
36a. During the Spring of 1993, Marine Corps Commandant Carl Mundy created a stir by suggesting that married men not be allowed to enlist in the Marine Corps, because the demands from home are so great.. Commentators laughed, “They don’t want gays, and now they don’t want straights.” Oh, marriage was indispensable in a Marine’s life, but only after finishing his training and some service. The military has, of course, been very supportive of servicemembers with recognition for spouses who have children when the servicemembers are deployed. I can remember during Basic that married enlistees and draftees had dependent allotments deducted from their paychecks.
After the 2003 War with
37 Charles Moskos, "The Military Ban on Homosexuals," The World and I, Jan. 1993, p. 52.
37a Ch 4, P 151, fn 37 : But let's turn Moskos around. A gay soldier might feel "offended" by being expected to show interest in barracks heterosexual banter and not being allowed to explain his disinterest. Yes, this seems unfair.
37b After speaking at the University of Minnesota (libertarian club), I was asked by one technology student why, when one considers civilian health spas where gays and straights can view each other in the showers, and when one also considers that military service creates the presumption of loss of privacy, "sexual privacy" (beyond "racial" privacy in 1948) should be a legitimate expectation in military service. (Indeed, the miltiary becomes more co-ed, even, except for the Marine Corps, in Basic.) I think that the military's answer would involve, not just "unit cohesion," but the notion that military units live and even hot-bunk together for long periods of time and sometimes demand the ultimate sacrifice.
Journalists Lou Michel and Dan Herbeck, in American Terrorist (2001, Regan) when writing about the early Army career of Timothy McVeigh (#1, Oklahoma City) point out that the Army has a COHORT (Cohesion, Operational Readiness, and Training) for new soldiers that sometimes keeps soldiers together in small units for three years. It also sometimes encourages “buddy” enlistments.
An important subtlety of the sexual privacy issue is that when young men live together in close quarters, they often feel reassured if they see less competitive males “succeed” in heterosexual contests, in their own way, even with less “desirable” women. This protects them from feeling that they have to compete with men who are “better” than them for women.
37c A retired Army infantry colonel who helped write the DADT
administrative rules points out (on CBS "60 Minutes,"
37d Paul Varnell, “Slowly, very slowly, the
pressure is building to overturn the military’s ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’
policy,” Chicago Free Press,
37f. The idea that privacy can be invaded or exposure to unwanted influences may occur clearly can happen in some civilian jobs: fire departments, other law enforcement, medicine, teaching—issues with these fields are discussed elsewhere on the site. (In medicine, some patients prefer examination by professionals of the same gender who are visibly heterosexual, but this has not been a “big” problem – yet medicine is a bit like the military, they say.) The need to hire a professional security force for airports raises an issue: if “pat down” screening of passengers is to be done, there are potential privacy issues and at least the possibility that some passengers will maintain that they be screened only by same-gendered persons known not to be homosexual (this brings back the “asking” possibility and the house of cards above it.)
37g In June 2002 SLDN reported that the Air Force Reserves had still been using an “old” (1987) form at enlistment that asked both sexual orientation and whether the recruit had or intended to commit homosexual acts. Here is the direct URL: http://www.sldn.org/templates/press/record.html?record=546 This URL provides for download of the actual form in PDF format (need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view).
38 Women usually cannot serve in combat units. However, in some combat roles, such as sniping, women may perform better than men.
38a Pg 152, pr. 2. SLDN, especially in Conduct Unbecoming: The Fifth Annual Report on Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Pursue, esp. pp 29, 46 (1999; see http://www.sldn.org/) document numerous incidents where military investigators have questioned civilian friends and family members. Even "inadvertent statements" (by acquaintances) are taken as evidence of "homosexual conduct." Questioning of civilians can particularly be a problem in recoupment cases (see SLDN Survival Guide , p. 50, discussion of an Air Force internal directive). In one case, an investigator doing a BI for a civilian had the nerve to ask an Air Force member if he (the servicemember) was gay (because of association)! All of this when lax security (both military and civilian) is being heavily reported by the media on critical systems.
Investigations of servicemembers’ off-base private
homes or apartments (or personally owned computers or any other properties) are
rather infrequent but have happened, particularly when civilian police have
turned over cases or evidence to military police (as was the case when a gay officer’s
Being seen in “gay bars” or at gay parades (or even marching in them) in civilian clothes when “off duty” is not supposed to trigger investigations (the 1994 regs actually say, “Going to a gay bar is not a crime”!), although in some parts of the country (especially in the South) commanders still tend to mark gay bars off-limits, which makes long drives to bars in cities like Miami, Atlanta and Charlotte common. (But see note 15a above, and 115 below.)
Statements to military physicians or psychiatrists and to chaplains have been used against servicemembers and have not been treated as confidential (although Joseph Steffan, in Honor Bound, indicates that his discussions with Academy chaplains were kept confidential). There is hope that this may be changed administratively in the future. Complaints by females (even heterosexual female soldiers) about sexual harassment and by male soldiers of anti-gay harassment, even through the chain of command of to the IG, have sometimes resulted in improper investigations.
Military commanders have varying response to admissions of homosexuality when they are believed to be intended to seek honorable discharges. The so-called “Corporal Klinger” provision in the 1993 Act and 1994 policy allows the military to retain such persons when it believes that the statements are made “to avoid military service,” and of course the Pentagon “complains” that this phenomenon account for much of the increase in “gay discharges” (at least in the earliest months of enlistments) since 1993. The military has often refused to discharge “admitted gays” when it needed them during deployments, until after they return stateside, as Steffan (op. cit.) reports in discussing the Persian Gulf War, and as I know from my own experience in the military during the Vietnam era, when a background awareness of a soldier’s homosexuality as often tolerated as long as misconduct did not become a problem.
39 Universities which offer ROTC generally do not mention the ban (or past recoupment problems) in their own catalogues.
According to the Department of Education's (DOE') Digest of Educational
Statistics (1996), about 1.17 million students graduated from
A gay young adult with a middle or upper class background might say, what's the big deal? This sounds insignificant as an opportunity. Many people have the same attitude about military sexual harassment -- put men and women together, and the inevitable happens; no big moral issue? For people from economically disadvantaged backgrounds (and especially to racial minorities), the military is still a major source of opportunity .
39a Ch 4, P 152. fn 39.:See Nancy Livingston, "Law School
Pressured on Military," The St. Paul Pioneer Press
The government has quietly offered "civilian" defense
scholarships, such as for the
The new legislation strengthens the so-called Solomon Amendment, an existing law which forces universities to violate non-discrimination policies that include sexual orientation. Under H.R. 3966, universities would be required to grant “equal access” to recruiters, giving the
The legislation specifically requires colleges and universities to grant military recruiters access to campus in `a manner that is at least equal in quality and scope to the degree of access to campuses and to students that is provided to any other employer.”
39b In October 1999, the Defense Appropriation Act 2000 (signed by
the president) repealed part of the Solomon-Pombo Amendment. Section 8120 of
new appropriation stipulates that
39d Servicemembes discharged before a certain minimum number of years active duty may be ineligble for Montgomery G.I. Bill Education benefits or recovery of what they have invested, even if discharged for “homosexual conduct.” [SLDN Survival Guide]
39e. Even in relatively recent times, servicemembers
discharged for homosexuality have had subsequent civilian employment problems
when they got downgraded (often, general) discharges (a common occurrence,
despite the supposed honorable discharge provision of Claytor’s
1981 “Old Ban”). Shilts relates a chilling account of
Air Force SAC pilot David Marier, discharged after
millions had been spent training him after a witch-hunt at Wurthsmith
AFB. Marier accepted a general discharge in lieu of
prosecution, but it is far from clear that the Air Force could have proved
fraternization. Nevertheless, Marier would then (this
was 1985) be unable to get a job as an airline pilot and would wind up waiting
on tables in his home
Moeller, in “The Military Invades the Campus: Affirmative action plus national
security equals and end to free speech on campus,” in Liberty, Sept.
2004, p. 19 talks about
40 James E. Kennedy, About-Face: A Gay Officer's Account of How He Stopped Prosecuting Gays in the Army and Started Fighting for Their Rights (New York: Birch Lane, 1995).
42 "Navy Sec. James Webb, reversing discriminatory policy,
announces women civilian employees can participate in submarine trials," Washington
But in February 2001, there were two civilian employees at or near the helm
of a submarine (the Greeneville) that collided with a fishing trawler
(the Ehime Maru) near
42a . One female with twenty-seven years of enlisted service in the Air Force including elapsed time in the reserves told me that her civilian job required her to remain in the reserves, and therefore not to “tell.”
43 Randy Shilts, Conduct Unbecoming, op. cit.
43a. However, the Catholic church, under increasing pressure from (exaggerated) press coverage about pedophilia among priests, says it is now “asking” about sexuality, urges, and sexual orientation of new priests. The arguments for celibacy have been (1) scriptural, regarding the nature of Christ and the apostles, and (2) the spiritual notion that celibacy is a spiritual gift. The basic counter-argument is that celibate priests would not have real experience with fathering and raising families , as in the “real lives” of the parishioners that the counsel. But the disturbing suspicion is that men who cannot relate intimately to other adults (preferably in their own age range, whether same sex or not) will look to outlets first in fantasy and then to those who are immature or vulnerable. This sort of argument, modified to mean that men who do not function heterosexually with adult women are suspect, would tend to feed the determination of those who want to jeep the military gay ban.
44 The Quill, Oct., 1994, op. cit.
44 Moskos, Charles, "The Military Ban on Homosexuals," op. cit.
45 At least one retired Army officer told me, however, that he served his twenty years relatively openly and that had known consciously he was gay as a teenager.
46 Shilts, op. cit.
47 The cable-TV film version of diver Greg Louganis's Breaking the Surface (New York: Random House, 1995), film by USA Films (1997) contains a scene where Greg hints he is gay to another fellow diver in the showers, and gets a negative reaction!
47a Ch 4 P 156, pr. 3. The "indecency" of racial integration in the military, as everywhere else, was an obvious smokescreen for apartheid, to keep whites economically privileged. With sexual orientation, it's a lot more complicated.
48 A cartoon "Don't Ask Don't Tell Gets Started," The New Republic, July 1993. The straight man asks, "what's wrong with me?"
48a Ch 4, P 156, pr. 4: The difference between military racial prejudice (when Truman addressed the issue in 1948) and the purported discomfort about gays would seem to be that heterosexual soldiers might feel that gay sexual interest (or disinterest) is directed at them personally. Nunn, after all, had screamed, "they have no privacy."
Regarding Truman’s 1948 racial integration of the military, it is worthy to note that only 5% of black persons in uniform were deployed into combat areas during World War II.
48b Nunn’s argument about military privacy presumably could affect other areas. For example, should a publicly known homosexual be an airport security screener if he or she does pat down searches on random subjects? If a publicly known homosexual is a gym teacher and has access to locker rooms and showers, does this violate the privacy of minor students?
49 Technically, merchant marine members must be eligible for military status (a bit like a posse) in time of war, so the military ban can be used against them; I have never heard that it actually has been.
49a (And sometimes civilian employees do share sleeping space -- some
49b In the
50 But see Anne Stockwell and J.V. Auley, "Tackling the NFL Closet," The Advocate,
The civilians-in-the-locker-room situation occurs even in a suit by Richard
Marsden against the
50b Ch 4, P 157, pr. 3. The New York Times on
50c Barney Frank has publicly opposed making a future ENDA apply to transgendered persons on the theory that even some civilian workplaces require employees to house together for short periods of time, and it would be impossible to define the circumstances of sex change precisely. (Note that Frank's comments could strengthen my condition that the Nunn "privacy" argument could apply to some civilian situations, such as those which led to my being thrown out of college in 1961). It does seem no one has seriously challenged the military on excluding transgendered persons. I do know of one case where a male sailor took a medical discharge after fifteen years of service before undergoing a sex-change.
50d Ch 4, P 158, pr. 1 The "hazing" of Plebes at the Naval
Academy seems slight compared to some of the rituals in the Marine Corps
("blood wings"), where golden eagle pins are driven into the pecs of initiates, causing excruciating pain and leaving
scars. (NBC "Dateline,"
Katherine Kersten, writing for the
Center for the American Experiment in Minneapolis, in the Star Tribune,
51 Enlisted soldiers are supposed to look after one another even on liberty. Some commanders will require an entire platoon to show up to help bail a buddy out of jail after getting drunk.
52 Urvashi Vaid, Virtual Equality: The Mainstreaming of Gay and Lesbian Liberation (New York: Doubleday, 1995).
52a Ch 4, P 159, pr. 3: At a college in
53 Carl Stychin, "Inside and Out of the Military," Law and Sexuality, A Review of Lesbian and Gay Issues, vol. 3, 1993.
54 John Barry and Evan Thomas, "At War over Women," Newsweek,
55 Gomes, op. cit., provides some discussion of this "conduct" paradox from a religious perspective.
55a. The Advocate,
55b Rolling Stone,
55c. Bill Clinton talks about the ban in his book My Life. See my review at http://www.doaskdotell.com/books/bclinton.htm
56 Jim Holobaugh, Torn Allegiances (Boston: Alyson, 1993).
56a Ch 4, P 159, fn 56. Reservists cannot be tried for sex acts "committed" during civilian status; if the acts occur during activation, they could conceivably be activated for court-martial, although this is very rare. Servicemembers discharged through administrative procedures do not lose their right to V.A. medical care for service-related problems.
In 1995, a tenured gay art teacher, Mark Wald, “came out” and led an effort
to prevent ROTC to coming to the of Washnurn High. Later, parents were angry at the loss of
funds and Wald had to endure threats. Another example of the reach of the ban into the civilian world.
(Kwin Mosby, “Making the Grade: Youth Report on
Coming Out at School,” Lavender (
57a Ch 4, P 161, pr. 4. During the Revolutionary War, soldiers sometimes were allowed to bring their dependents with them on campaigns!
57b Ch 4, P 161, pr 4-5. First Lady Hillary Clinton describes day care for children of military personnel as a "readiness issue." She's right, but that certainly smacks of "heterosexism."
58 Reservists and National Guard members must also be available for active duty and deployable on short notice. Some national guard units use moonlighting reservists, rather than civilian employees, to do their paperwork, maintain their computer systems, and the like. One such reservist told me he would be called up to go to Bosnia, say, only if they had to clean a Lan there of computer viruses! Sometimes military specialists with unusual skills (as in intelligence) are put up in hotels, not barracks, during "deployments." Nevertheless, the military's policy on conduct and on gays applies to all servicemembers in military status, even those we know always go home at night. The notion that more and more military missions will consist of brainwork is borne out by the threat of worms like Code Red and the possibility that the military could be called upon to defend American electronic commerce infrastructure.
59 Rand Corporation (National Defense Research Institute), Sexual
59a Referring back to note 37, Rand sometimes
makes a distinction between “unit
cohesion” and “mission cohesion”,
a point sometimes made by Chicago columnist Paul Varnell,
“Chipping away at military’s gay ban,” p. 26, The Washington Blade,
60 "Punishment" given out by peers in one's own unit, rather than by commanders.
61 But when NBC aired the movie on
62 Until the 1960's,
63 Margarethe Cammermeyer, Serving in Silence (New York: Viking, 1993).
64 Bill Moyers, "No Room for Bystanders," Report from the Capitol, Feb. 1993.
65 Scott Akin, "No Longer Under Cover, Navy Man Keith Meinhold Sails Out of the Closet," The Advocate,
65a The Newsweek cover headline in which Meinhold's
likeness appeared in February 1993 was called "Gays and the
Military," not "Gays in the military." I once saw this magazine
laid out in display, by itself, on a table in the library of
66 Meinhold's story in his own words is available at the website http://members.aol.com/kmeinhold/homepage/html
67 "Gays and the Military," Newsweek,
68 National Review,
69 Akin, op. cit., p. 52
70 New York Times,
71 "Reinstated Gay Sailor Revels in Navy Routine, The New
72 Mixner op. cit., p. 270 provides another synopsis of Meinhold.
73 "The Case of Navy Office Richard D. Selland," The
74 Randy Shilts, Conduct Unbecoming, op. cit., p. 538.
74a Ch 4, P 169, pr 3. (p 133) The legal age for (heterosexual) sexual activity, according to the UCMJ, is 16. Consensual heterosexual sexual (illegal when "on duty" on military "property") encounters are sometimes tolerated in the field, in practice (although military officers have told me they personally do not tolerate any sexual activity in their units). So, sure, the military is treating sexual "conduct" in a discriminatory fashion (all the more when the law doesn't allow homosexual acts even "off duty"). Is pregnancy just as detrimental to order and discipline as homosexual "desire"? Too bad, the courts don't think they're allowed to make such judgments.
The Navy, in fact, has been circulating questionnaires among female sailors trying to determine their willingness to use birth control methods and to avoid pregnancy when deployed. In a volunteer force environment, the military has become very dependent upon female members, and therefore rather schizophrenic about the encroachment upon male domains (hence the "lesbian baiting").
75 Mary Ann Humphrey, My Country, My Right to Serve: Experiences of Gay Men and Women in the Military, World War II to the Present (New York: Harper Collins, 1990), p. 235.
76 Steffan's book describes one ambiguous advance by another midshipman. He rejects this advance. Otherwise, the book neither mentions nor denies sexual activity. The Navy, recall, had never charged him with sexual acts. At one point in his district court trial, an appeals court told the district court judge that Steffan did not have to answer questions about sexual activity because his discharge had been for "status" (Wolinsky, op. cit., p. xiii).
77 Mixner, op. cit., p. 308.
77a. pg 171, pr. 2. The most complete discussion (that I have found)
of whether "lifting the ban" would noticeably increase HIV infection
in the military appears in the 1993 Rand Report, Sexual Orientation and US
Military Personnel Policy: Options and Assessment, from pp. 242-271. The
general impression is that deployment of (heterosexual) military personnel to
77b Ch 4, P 171 pr 3: Were the military to ever become concerned about undetected HIV infection (at accession or before deployments), it could start doing the P24 antigen test as well as Elisa/Western Blot. Blood banks already use P24; it can detect infection much earlier during the "window period." So the undetected infection possibility is no argument for "asking."
77c Ch 4, P 171, pr 3: During the mid to late
1980's, the war clause was being phased out of most insurance contracts. At the
same time, newspapers were carrying stories with dire predicitions
about the prospective effects of the HIV epidemic on insurance companies and
even on real estate prices (many of these predictions greatly overblown). The
military screening for HIV was at that time often thought to improve the
insurance risks for military persons but I can find no published evidence that
this has ever been really significant. (But see note 77a about
However, Judge Oliver Gasch, if Steffan (1991), actually writes that "the Court takes judicial notice of the widely praised and accepted final report of the Presidential Commission on the Human Immunodeficiency Virus Epidemic." Gasch (who had called Steffan a "homo" in the precedings) then tries in a convoluted way to juxtapose behavior and status or inclination to justify his own conclusion that HIV gives the military additional reasons to justify the ban, even if it inadvertently affects "abstinent" homosexuals. (Wolinsky/Sherrill, Gays and the Military, Princetom Univeristy Press, 1993) pp 185-188). Steffan himself (in Honor Bound, on p. 235) points out that the government denied that AIDS had any thing to do with the ban. Indeed, to the best of my knowledge, no other court opinions on this refer to this issue. Again, I point out that a few years before, at the beginning of the abyss of this epidemic, I would have hardly thought challenging the ban feasible (any more than it was feasible in the days of the Cuban Missile Crisis). See also note 101.
77d Joyce Harmon Price reported in the April 13 The Washington Times that Bush’s Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld had appointed an publicly open homosexual Stephen Herbits for an important civilian personnel position in the Defense Department. Not surprisingly, religious right activists like Robert H. Knight and Louis P. Sheldon denounced the moves as apparently an inappropriate conflict of interest, assuming that Herbits might be influenced by his own position on gays in the military in doing his job. Pro-family groups had already expressed disfavor with Bush’s appointment of another homosexual as AIDS policy director. In the previous Bush administration, the appointment of Peter McWilliams to a high civilian defense post had stirred ire. Perhaps religious conservatives really do want to use the military ban to again restrict defense-related employment for civilian gays as well (as was very much the case in the past). I have personally had many reservations about the professional appropriateness of anyone publicly active in gay causes to work in a discretionary position involving the military (see http://www.doaskdotell.com/hppub/3rdparty/isethics.htm), but this is more an issue of professionalism and conflict of interest than discrimination.
78 "To Support and Defend, "video filmed
by Campaign for Military Service and distributed by VDI (
79 Jose Zuniga, Soldier of the Year, (New York: Pocket Books, 1994), p. 213.
80 In an interview in George, May 1997, Schwarzkopf points out that blacks had been segregated with the prejudicial notion of their inferiority, whereas gays were to be kept out because their qualities, which Schwarzkopf sees as almost ennobling in some cultural areas, would complicate the bonding between men in a combat unit.
81 Le Blanc, op. cit.
82 Frank Browning, The Culture of Desire: Perversity and Paradox in Gay Lives Today (New York: Crown, 1993).
83 See Vaid, op. cit., for the detailed
84 Jose Zuniga, "My Life in the Military Closet," The New York Times Magazine, June, 1993.
85 Ibid., pp. 237-251
86 Nick Adde, "Gay Officer Sues over
'Unfit' Discharge," The Navy Times,
87 Justin had "come out" on
88 Scott Peck, All American Boy (New York: Scribner, 1995).
90 One former Army officer I have met in the Libertarian Party reported to me incidents of fragging during the Vietnam war.
91 Frank Browning, The Culture of Desire, (
92 Campaign for Military Service, "A
Comprehensive Proposal for Lifting the Ban on Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Servicemembers in the
93 Tom Clancy, Submarine, a Guided Tour Inside a Nuclear Warship (New York: Berkeley, 1993).
2000 I would visit a civilian iron-ore freighter used on
94 Les Aspin actually told the Senate that the gay thing was secondary; "morale is taking a few hits because of pay problems and things of that nature." 103rd Congress Senate Armed Services Committee, Vol. 2, p. 68.
95 James Holobaugh, op. cit., p. 90. Holobaugh refers to himself as a "masculine gay."
96 Jose Zuniga, "My Life in the Military Closet," op. cit.
97 E.L., Pattullo, "Why Not Gays in
the Military," National Review,
98 A secret document which affects public policy, as in John Grisham's 1992 novel, The Pelican Brief.
98 a Ch 4 P 183 pr. 6 My position on "openness" by servicemembers must seem like a paradox. There are times to do your job and not to talk too much. There are times to focus on the adaptive needs of the moment and learn from them. Gradually, one wants others to come to respect one for who one is, and this is where being able to "tell," publish, and discuss come into play; but this much be a gradual process, where the respect, comfort, and recognition from others is earned and accumulated.
98b Although commanders are, under DADTDP, not supposed to use information about sexual orientation (as in the Greta Cammermeyer case) gathered specifically for security clearances as the basis for administrative discharge, it seems obvious that commanders can be tempted to launch covert investigations for some other reason given such information. This is a serious problem and really not good security policy. See SLDN's Survival Guide (1997), p. 36.
didn’t say it anywhere explicitly in the White House Letter, but certainly my
intention was that the military would not interfere with the home life of a servicemember senior enough to live off post. The military
would not concern itself with the gender of a person living in the servicemember’s home, shown on a
desk “family picture,” given as an emergency contact or named as a beneficiary
on a life insurance policy (the 1993
98d Feb 2006: The 82nd Airborne Div.
99 From a legal perspective, this proposal means that commanders could prohibit their subordinates from "publishing" their gay sexual orientation. This would certainly encompass putting it on a public Internet space (a blog, weblog, or social networking site like myspace), and elsewhere on this site I have suggested a general blogging policy that would apply to members of the military. Even on-line bulletin boards fit the legal definition of "publication." An “open statement” (as in the Clinton July 1993 speech) intended to be seen by other members of one’s unit but not by the public could be prohibited. Statements to family members and personal friends, under the “private choice” paradigm would not be prohibited (in this kind of a policy). The services allow, at their discretion, members to publish opinions (such as letters to newspaper editors) under their own names, but outside of bulletin boards and special publications such as Army Times, such self-expression is usually discouraged ľ forbidden if it is "reproachful." So this provision would have little practical effect. It seems less credible a dozen years into the Internet age.
For months, even before his reinstatement, Keith Meinhold, in his America Online profile, characterized himself as a Navy volunteer but gay rights activist conscript. See also note 140.
Actually, the legal world recognizes two meanings for the concept of “publication”: (1) conveying information to at least one other person who understands it (this is the definition often used in civil libel cases and would be the legal definition with respect to the 1993 “don’t ask don’t tell” law), or (2) (and the meaning implied here) making a body of information available to any member of the public willing to pay the fair market price for it (which can include free content on the Internet).
One way to characterize a "no publishing" rule would be to say that one cannot discuss one's sexual orientation "within sight" of unit mates when on active-duty status. (But see note on Steve May, last note below. The "no publish" rule could not apply to reservists not on military status). See also note 159. On the other hand, the kinds of "privacy" arguments made by Nunn and Moskos (and one has to consider the legal notion of "pervasivity" of published statements) could mean that intentional "self-outing" could sometimes be construed as an indirect form of "sexual harassment" by gays against straights!
My own conflict of interest rules limit the ability of civilians in management positions to publish controversial material on their own without supervision. These rules are at http://www.doaskdotell.com/content/coirules.htm Most members of the military have direct reports (even NCO’s – perhaps “specialists” or “technical specialists” etc. do not), so these rules, if applied in the military, would seem to implement a lot of my own “live and let live” policy. (See also discussion of military blogs at http://www.doaskdotell.com/content/blog.htm )
President Clinton has wanted to apply rebuttable presumption only to an “open statement,” or a “self-promotional” statement. The 1993 law could have been worded to read:
That the member has stated in a public forum or in the known presence of other military members that he or she is a homosexual or bisexual, or words to that effect, unless there is a further finding, made and approved in accordance with procedures set forth in the regulations, that the member has demonstrated that he or she is not a person who engages in, attempts to engage in, or intends to engage in homosexual acts.
I’m no fan of this, but it could have made the “presumption” clause part of the law narrower.
99A. Of course, the Steve May
case will now poke holes in my original “don’t publish” suggestion. See Jon Barret, “The Accidental Activist: For the first time, The
Real World’s Danny and his military boyfriend, Paul, talk about life in the
public eye in the age of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell,’ The Advocate,
99B. The military does control what its members say to the media. The theory is that a person who can fly an airplane with bombs shouldn’t have too much input into public policy (even though we all know that the military vastly manipulated public policy to its advantage during the Cold War, even in its affect on the draft). There was controversy over retired officers forming groups to endorse candidates, but retired officers have the same freedoms as civilians (almost). (Comments by Bill McPeake, USAF Ret, September 2000 on McNeal-Lehrer.) Nevertheless, “Major” Melissa Wells-Petry wrote her book arguing for the military ban (Exclusion, Regnery, 1994) while still on active duty, then resigned. The Army insisted that she had articulated her own views.
99c. PlanetOut.com and Gay.com have provided SLDN’s guidelines for how servicemembers can protect themselves online, especially when using their own private accounds. (The guidelines are authored by attorney Sharra Greer). The web reference is http://www.planetout.com/news/feature.html?sernum=875 or
99d On page 263 (iUniverse copy) where I
elaborate on my “Live and Let Live” policy, I mention that military commanders
would have the authority to control open publication of material by
subordinates, including sexual orientation. This would not apply to reservists not on active duty or to ROTC students or
pre-ROTC students, but would apply to service academies. I explain “open
publication” at my vocabulary
link. Former president Bill Clinton, in his book My Life (Knopf, 2004)
mentions “Live and Let Live” as his intention with his own
99f “Self-libel” or “auto-libel” in literary works produced by military members or even college students in ROTC programs could be a serious and little known issue, because of the tricky “rebuttable presumption” clause of the 1993 law. The precedent could even affect other areas, like teaching. I discuss this at http://www.doaskdotell.com/refer/intelct.htm (look under “libel” and “self-libel”)
100 Again, I want to talk about it just to expose heterosexuals to the implications of their own commitments!
101 The military certainly is free to disqualify persons who, upon
medical examination, show obvious
As of January 2000, Britain has implemented a Rand-style "code of conduct" applied to heterosexuals and homosexuals alike, forbidding fraternization, sexual harassment or any kind of visible offensive conduct (without a "presumption" clause).
Some of the text of
In May 2000
The “new” European Union is now forming a common military (in the style of
UN and NATO forces) and it will be important to watch its experience with the
gay issues. But to date (Dec 2000) European countries (including
Jeremy Quittner, writing for The Advocate
(1/16/2001), "Military Learning by Example," reports on the efforts
by Aaron Belkin, at the University of California,
Santa Barbara, Center for the Study
of Sexual Minorities in the Military, to study foreign militaries that have
lifted the ban. Belkin,
For a recent discussion of the relative success that Britain has had with
lifting the ban, read the article bt Sarah Lyall, “Gays in the British Military Ask, Tell, and Move
On” from the New York Times,
In the Spring of 2002,
103 Rand Corporation, op. cit.
F104 Interview in Bay Windows,
105 Wolinsky, op. cit., p. 31.
106 Andrew Sullivan, "The Politics of Homosexuality," The
107 Rand, op. cit., p. 269.
108 Rand reports the risk of a false negative (the combined sensitivity of Elisa and Western Blot) is 8 in 1 million, p. 252. The risk could be reduced even further by a newer P24 core antibody test.
109 Rand, op. cit., pp 242-271.
110 Barry Goldwater, The
111 David Mixner, Stranger among Friends, (New York: Bantam, 1996), pp. 324-325.
112 Kennedy, op. cit., p. 270 provides exact (copyright-protected) text.
113 Numerous bills were offered in the House during 1993 requiring the military screen out homosexuals, but were tabled as everyone waited for the President to act.
114 Available in White House papers for
115a, pg 191, pr. 5. Although apparently servicemembers may name same-sex beneficiaries on insurance policies, commanders will have legal right to access to these forms, (see SLDN Survival Guide (1997), p. 25), presumably for emergency contact purposes. Similarly, servicemembers may name unrelated same-sex adults as (general) emergency contacts (although at least one contact must be a blood relative or legal spouse). At least this was spelled out in the policy attached to President Clinton’s July 1993 announcement; theoretically, the military could use the language of the Nov. 1993 law to quibble on this and apparently it was not included in the DOD 1994 policy, and less scrupulous commanders may ignore this 1993 provision altogether. There have apparently been a very small number of cases where this has been a problem: reportedly this was used against Tracy Thorne, Paul Thomasson and a few other administrative cases. The 1994 DOD regulations do state, “credible information does not exist when …the only information known is an associational activity such as going to a gay bar, possessing or reading homosexual publications, associating with known homosexuals, or marching in a gay rights rally in civilian clothes. Such activity, in and of itself, does not provide evidence of homosexual conduct.” In one case, I sent a draft copy of my own DADT book to a servicemember who shared it with numerous other airmen on base without incident, and the library on that particular base offers a published bibliography on the ban. It is not clear how far this “merciful” provision goes, say, if a servicemember lives off post with an unrelated same-sex partner at his own expense, in a dwelling intended (by zoning records) for one person or legally married couple only.
116 Richard D. Mohr, A More Perfect
117 Barney Frank, "Don't Blame the President," The
118 Again, separatism in
118a Again, the idea that we would write a
statute that says that a (possibly "trolling") statement may mean
something other than what it literally says sets a dangerous legal precedent.
Here, the military is entitled to make “rebuttable presumption” that a soldier
has a “propensity” to engage in some act. (As Sam Nunn once said, “when you
have stated your status, you have described your conduct.”) Here, the “penalty”
is administrative and essentially civil (“telling” is not itself a criminal
violation of the UCMJ), but it does not take much of a leap in to imagine this
idea being used to undermine defenses to criminal accusations in other
situations. I contributed a piece “The Perils of Rebuttable Presumption” to the
119 Buttino, Frank, A Special Agent, (New York: William Morrow, 1993). Buttino claims, being an undercover FBI agent is like being a closeted gay man. The Justice Department eventually settled with Buttino and agreed that the FBI would not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation alone. However, the history of the Buttino case reads like one of the military cases, with "naming names." See Robin Buhrke, A Matter of Justice (New York: Routledge, 1996) pp. 123-132.
In September 1999, CNN ran a Sunday nigh special about the
Even very “civilian” agencies have training programs that sometimes require
employees to live together in dormitories. For example, the Internal Revenue
The military capabilities of the
120 "Reader's Forum," The
120a However Elaine Donnelly, of the Center for Military Readiness, wrote in National Review in April 2001 that the 1993 law simply recodified theold ban with the exception that the Secretary of Defense could omit “asking” on the enlistment form—but could resume asking if he wanted. This is a bit oversimplified since the law also had a “sense of Congress’ provision that asking might not be necessary, but it is true that the 1993 punishes any statement indicating a “propensity for homosexual acts” and not just “open” statements, as proposed by President Clinton. .
121 Struck down at the Appellate level in May 1996 - see Chapter 6.
121a The rebuttable presumption scenario, by being written into United States Code, certainly sets a dangerous precedent for other areas. The statute defines “gay” as anyone who demonstrates a “propensity” to engage in homosexual acts, and then includes (in a separate sentence) includes wording that states that the use of the word creates the propensity, unless rebutted. Discharge is required. It’s important to note that statutory law (or “positive law”) comes into play here because homosexuality no longer invokes the automatic and universal “common law” social and legal sigma (outside the military) that it once did, even if the statute seems to beckon that stigma, Let’s rehearse this scenario: A soldier writes a short screenplay in which he says that he is gay and goes through a discharge hearing, but commits no actual acts. He posts the screenplay on the Internet and allows search engines to find it (and keep it in caches and Internet archives), and therefore anyone in the general public (including his commander and other unit or “bunk mates”) can find it. This is a recursive function situation, where a crime or violation defines itself. Would the military have to discharge him in “real space”? He has not specifically said “I am gay” in a real world space, just in imaginary space (or “another dimension”). But there is a secondary wrinkle here. If another person had written the screenplay and used him as a homosexual protagonist and he were not actually homosexual, he would be able to sue and win damages for libel. Therefore, in this situation the soldier has libeled himself. The military has a “common law” right to read into the circumstances that the soldier has said, “implicitly,” “I am a homosexual” or, “I have an erotic desire for homosexual contact and a propensity to commit homosexual acts, illegal in the military.” Therefore, according to the 1993 statute, the military would still have to discharge him (unless the soldier rebutted the presumption, which he would have to be given the opportunity to do – but then the military might produce witnesses that the soldier had been seen in gay bars, had possessed gay publications, etc.) The situation would not match President Clinton’s idea that an “open” statement would be necessary to trigger discharge, because in this situation (and in the statute) the statement is covert and implied by external common law concerns.
I construct this example, because it could set up examples that could be copied in other areas. Most states, for example, would require the revocation (or denial) of a teaching license to any person who had made statement, even implied (by common law considerations) that he/she had a propensity for sexual interest in underage minors, even if that person assumed that some degree of interest is “universal” and is a matter of “temptation.” Of course, in comparison to the military law, there is not necessarily a reason to say that erotic interest equates to a propensity to act, because one can resist temptation; the 1993 military law, on the other hand, specifically says that “stated interest” implies a propensity to act unless rebutted. This can raise questions about socialization, and a person’s denial of ability to meet social expectations. The visitor can imagine how such a scenario could arise. Of course, these scenarios do bring up First Amendment concerns, as balanced against the need for public order and reassurance in sensitive jobs requiring involuntary exposure to intimate contact.
Propensity and presumption law is based on the notion that the authorities who receive a provocative statement are protecting some vital public interest and cannot afford to “take a chance” with the uncertainty that the speaker really might engage in the action his speech promotes. This notion occurs, for example, when speech in security checkpoints at airports is severely limited (“no jokes” – but the analogy is not really valid, as DADT is not about “jokes”.).
122 Department of Defense Directive,
President Clinton had softly mentioned “marriages” as forbidden homosexual
conduct. Presumably, the military would treat
123 As the rules are interpreted by C. Dixon Osburn and Michelle Benecke, Servicemembers' Legal Defense Network, The Second Report on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Pursue" Violations, (Washington: SLDN, April, 1996), p. 4.
See also C. Dixon Osburn, "A Policy in Desperate Search of a Rationale: The Military's Policy on Lesbians, Gays, and Bisexuals," University of Missouri-Kansas City Law Review, Fall, 1995.
123b. The 1994 DOD regulations regarding separation read at one place, “Sexual orientation is considered a personal and private matter, and homosexual orientation is not a bar to service unless manifested by homosexual conduct.” (This is section H-1 “Basis”). Some conservative senators balked at the “private matter” wording. At another place (“Changes to Accession Policy”), “SecDef policy … Establishes homosexual conduct, and not sexual orientation, as a cause for rejection for military service.” “Homosexual Conduct” as a “Reason for Separation” is listed as a separate “for cause” category, distinct from “Acts of Misconduct or Moral or Professional Dereliction,” except when homosexual conduct involves minors (under 16), is committed for compensation or with force or intimidation.
123c Although officially applicants are not “asked” sexual orientation (note the problems with the Air Force Reserve elsewhere on this file) applicants must read and sign an “Applicant Briefing Item on Separation Policy.”
“As military members, you occupy a unique position in society. You represent the military establishment. This special status brings with it the responsibility to uphold and maintain the dignity and high standards of the U.S. Armed Forces at all times and in all places. The Armed Forces must also be ready at all times for world-wide deployment. This fact carries with it the requirement for military units and their members to possess high standards of morale, good order and discipline, and cohesion. As a result, military laws, rules, customs and traditions include restrictions on your personal behavior that may be different from civilian life. Members of the Armed Forces may be involuntarily separated before their enlistment or term of service ends for various reasons established by law and military regulations…” (Congress, recall, did concede in its legislation that some restrictions on servicemember behavior would not be acceptable in civilian life.)
“Although we have not and will not ask you about your sexual orientation, you should be aware that homosexual conduct is grounds for discharge from the Armed Forces. This means that if you do pne of the following, you could be involuntarily separated before your term of service ends.”
“(1) Homosexual acts. You engage in, attempt to engage in, or solicit another to engage in a homosexual act or acts. A “homosexual act” means touching a person of your same sex or allowing such a person to touch you for the purpose of satisfying sexual desires. (For example, hand-holding or kissing, or physical contact of a sexual nature.
“(2) Homosexual statements. You make a statement that demonstrates a propensity or intent to engage in homosexual acts. This may include language or behavior that a reasonable person would believe intends to convey the statement that you are a homosexual or bisexual.
“(3) Homosexual marriage. You marry or attempt to marry a person of your same sex.”
“You will not be separated if you do or say these things solely to end your military service. The Armed Forces do not tolerate harassment or violence against any servicemember, for any reason.”
So, the government is maintaining, “Homosexual conduct is incompatible with military service.”
123b Again, homosexual “associations” are
not supposed to trigger investigations, but often have in practice. Being seen
in a gay bar, or marching in civilian clothes in a gay rights parade, is not
supposed to trigger an investigation, but sometimes has. Providing professional
or legal services to gay people or gay couples in a civilian job (when later
called up on in the Reserves) should not trigger an investigation. Having a
photo of a same-sex partner, even at work, should not. One particular problem
is that people have been “outed” by “jilted” former
partners or biological “family members”. Commanders are not supposed to
investigate statements obviously made to them by third parties because of
personal grievances, but in practice often have. You can read the
administrative rules online by going to the
124 Michelle M. Benecke and C. Dixon Osburn, Memorandum to Assistant Secretary of Defense and to
General Counsel for the Department of Defense, Servicemembers'
Legal Defense Network, (Washington, D.C.,
126 Ibid., personal comments made to me.
127 Adde. op. cit.; article by Tim Kington,
"Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Believe It!", Frontiers,
128 Memorandum from the General Counsel of the Department of Defense,
129 Yet the Nov. 1996 Congressional Quarterly ("Don't Ask, Don't Tell") naively reports that gay discharges have declined since 1993!
129a SLDN's Fifth Annual Report indicates that there 1149 "gay discharges" in 1998, compared to 997 in 1997. This is the highest number since 1987. (There are 3 to 4 "gay discharges" per day. One retired colonel points out that young people (that is, mainly heterosexuals) are not as fit physically as in earlier generations, and given the improving attitudes towards gays in civilian society, may seek the "gay out" if they perceive no punishment.
There have been over 400 cases of anti-gay harassment, and an increase in servicemembers who come out to rebut harassment. On a "60 Minutes" segment, one discharged soldier reported a drill sergeant requiring recruits to chant "shoot the fags" epithets while double-timing.
Women were about 14% of servicemembers but accounted for almost 28% of the discharges in 1998 (SLDN), which (particularly at some posts) definitely indicates sexual harassment and "lesbian baiting."
SLDN reports that in 1999, the military executed 1034 gay discharges, down about 10% since 1998 (the Marine Corps went up) but still up 73% since 1993.
The Pentagon solicited public comments for the sexual harassment problem (especially in relation to perceived sexual orientation) in March 2000. The response to me appears at http://www.doaskdotell.com/content/usaf.htm
Tenth Annual Report from SLDN appeared March 2004. “As the
129b Daniel De Vise, “
129c Sexual harassment has been a longstanding problem
at service academies. Steven Kamarow, “Pentagon:
Academies set climate for abuse: Says culture devalues women in uniform,” USA Today,
130 Osburn and Benecke, op. cit., page iii.
131 Wendy Johnson, "Under DOD "Don't Ask" Policy, Twice
as Many Tell," The
132 Osburn, Benecke,
and Childress, Third Annual Report on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't
Pursue" Violations, (Washington: Servicemembers'
Legal Defense Network (SLDN),
133 Even more recently, however, the Marine Corps finally allowed Elzie to retire.
134 Adde, op cit. The military, however, has not tried to deny benefits to anyone already retired since 1963, when it acted upon Grace Hopper for private, consensual sex that had supposedly happened during her active duty. Note: as note in litigation on the Texaco racial discrimination case, private companies have sometimes disciplined retirees with denial of benefits.
135 Ross MacKenzie, Brief Points: An Almanac for Parents and Friends of U.S. Naval Academy Midshipmen (Annapolis: Naval Institute Press, 1996), p. 52 warns that the Naval Academy still can seek recoupment (up to $100,000) from those who separate in their last two years.
135a The government has tried
to recoup $67,000 from midshipman Tommie Lee Watkins, Jr., who resigned from
The government also tried to recoup scholarship funds from Air Force
psychiatrist Dr. John Hensala, who had attended
According to Southern Voice,
Here are some more recoupment web references:
The general policy, with regard to the Deutsch 1994 memo, seems to be that recoupment will be attempted when there is proof of actual homosexual conduct (beyond presumptive statements) or when statements are made in bad faith to avoid military service; but this seems very tricky as there have been many wrongheaded attempts at recoupment even under the Deutsch memo (http://www.sldn.org/templates/law/record.html?section=57&record=978 ) . Furthermore, scholarships would be lost prospectively, which will be very damaging to many college students in practice.
A very recent concern is that “gay” statements made by high school students and college students on social networking websites like myspace.com and facebook.com might trigger elimination from ROTC programs under DADT, at least in practice; the actual legalities remain unclear as of early 2006. Media reports discuss employers looking at social networking websites and blogs of students, so presumably this applies to the military. There would seem to be constitutional issues (First Amendment) if students are penalized for supporting gay rights on these sites by recruiters or ROTC; theoretically, such writings would not necessarily trigger the rebttable presumption of homosexual conduct, even though in practice students would have a hard time defending themselves.
135b Ray Rivera, The Washington Post,
136 Hanna Rosen, "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," The New
137 Robert Lamme, "Drinks and Discharges," Out, June 1996, p. 32.
138 Editorial, "Lift the Ban," The
139 Osburn and Benecke, op. cit., p. 12; also Debbie Emery, "The Mother of All Witch-Hunts," Out, June 1996, p. 176. Mrs. Emery is the mother of the soldier (Shannon) who was attacked and almost raped and then accused of "lesbianism."
140a Ch. 4, P 200 p 2 (and 138, pr. 2): In December 1997, a 17-year
Navy seaman Tim McVeigh (no whatsover relation to
OKC) sent an email about a Christmas party to a shipmates wife under an
141 Philip Shenon, "Homosexuality
Still Questioned in the Military," The New York Times,
142 Osburn and Benecke, op. cit., p. 6, gives a graphic summary of military violations of DADTDP.
143a Ch 4, P 201, fn 143: The Air Force seems to be sensitive about the popular notion that it is the most "civilian" of the services, so anti-gay witch-hunts seem to be one knee-jerk reaction. But late in 1997, Air Force Secretary Widnall issued an order banning discrimination against civilian employees, and this would apparently nullify requirements in a few positions that employees remain in the Reserves.
In 1996, in fact, some "conservatives" complained about Navy Dept. programs for civilian employees that provided sensitivity training about gays not in uniform. At least one former military person involved in litigation had (in the past) found it necessary to hide his web page (describing his suit) from Internet robots while he sought civilian employment. I do think that this whole issue of civilian employment in companies with military customers can raise conflict of interest issues, as discussed in Chapter 5.
144 Bradley Graham, "Military Reviews Allegations of Harassment Against Gays," The
145 The Army has the Criminal Investigative Division; the Air Force,
the Office of Special Investigations; the Navy and Marine Corps, the Naval
Criminal Investigative Service. The Navy often uses civilian (Civil Service)
investigators. As Randy Shilts so well documented in Conduct Unbecoming, a favorite
tactic of all of these investigative agencies is “naming names.” Although the military branches are not supposed
to discriminate against gay civilian employees (and indeed the Navy has had
“gay” diversity training for its civilian employees), it’s hard to believe that
a gay person con credibly work for the
147 "Is the Air Force Asking and Telling,"
Ch 4, P 203, pr. 1: The Pentagon's claims that recruits are declaring themselves "gay" to get discharged after unpleasant experiences in Basic Training does bring back the threat that the services (particularly the Air Force, which complains about this "problem") may start officially "asking" recruits at entry again.
148 "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," Congressional Quarterly, Nov. 1996, p. 262. This does sound circular!
149 Queerlaw (Hank Thomas)
insists that various agencies were given considerable leeway in implementation,
and that the FBI,
149a Ch 4, P 203, pr. 2: Frank Kameny
reports in 1997 that the
149b A history of mental health treatment is also not supposed to be considered derogatory information in security clearance processing. Shilts reports that Jimmy Carter’s administration had promised to consider the civilian security clearance problem for gays if he got a second term in 1980, but not lifting the ban.
The value of security clearances in civilian employment must not be underestimated. Many clearances take a long time to get, and many employers with defense or intelligence contracts requiring high level clearances will not even consider an applicant who does not already have an active clearance, so past discrimination can affect today’s market.
149c Here is a short discussion of Clinton-era Executive Orders relating to homosexuals in federal employment, military and civilian.
1. Executive Order
2. Executive Order
Order 13140 , dated October 6. 1999. Amended the Manual for
Courts-Martial by adding hate crimes definitions that explicitly includes
sexual orientation. (Remember,
149d Recently, CSSMM (above) gave a press
release concerning the parallel between uniformed services and
a visiting professor at the Goldman School of Public
Palace and Body of Secrets, said the
which trains very much like the military. "They live in close quarters,
they train to do covert activities, and so on. To that degree, they work
in a somewhat paramilitary environment," he said. Agents in covert
operations of the
military personnel on the frontlines.
”According to Bamford, "there doesn't seem to be any problem with the
intelligence offices accepting gays." He added that "I've never thought
it was very rational to keep them out of intelligence" in the first place.
He noted that the lifting of the gay bans in the intelligence communities
could serve as a precedent for the relaxing of gay exclusion rules in the
military. "Before, there had always been these worries over compromising
classified relationships," he said. "Now, they've found nothing to point
to. They have a lot of employees now who are gay in intelligence and who
are working out well."
150 Lt. Paul Thomasson, intending to
challenge "don't ask, don't tell" on his own moral grounds, had
written his commanding officer a private letter stating simply that he is gay,
after telling his friends, "I defect!" See In Newsweekly (
151 In the District Court's opinion on the Thomasson case, Judge Hilton noted the constitutionality of the all-male draft in the past.
Ch 4, P 204, after pr. 2 (D) In June 1997, Barney Frank, seeing new opportunity in the public concern of all the sudden "witch-hunting" of straight officers for past adulteries, tried to reinvent his "compromise" and extend it to straights with his Anti-Hypocrisy bill, which would exempt non-fraternal, consensual, private adult sex from prosecution under the UCMJ; there is obvious danger that Congress could keep the UCMJ sodomy law for gay sex only, and then deal with Romer, as we will discuss shortly. Some of this was motivated by public sympathy for straigh officers, like Kelly Flynn, caught in military witchhunts for adultery.
152 Lisa Keen, "Supreme Court Decisions 'Horrible'," The
153 Ron Davis, "A Deal on the High Court," Batlimore Alternative, July. 1996, p. 33. This piece contains an excellent explanation in layman's terms of the "standard of review" concepts.
154 The Navy allowed
In December 1995, the Air Forced discharged Capt. Richard Richenberg for his statements made right after
Both Tracy Thorne and Paul Thomasson refused to rebut, claiming that answering misconduct charges that no one had made was undignified and a gross violation of personal privacy. Since 1994, only eight servicemembers have successfully challenged the rebuttable presumption clause in administrative discharge procedures.
In 1999, the Air Force allowed airman Sean Fucci to "rebut the presumption," but he left the
service anyway at the end of his enlistment because of repeated harassment and
nasty notes at his
155 Paul Rosenfels, Homosexuality: The Psychology of the Creative Process, (New York: Libra, 1972 and Ninth Street Center, 1986).
156 Hillman, op. cit., p. 6.
157 Michael Lerner, The Politics of Meaning (New York: Addison-Wesley, 1996), p. 164.
158 Paglia, Camille, "Where Gay Boys Come From," Harvard Gay & Lesbian Review, Spring, 1994. Also, see the affidavit s by Richard Green, "On Homosexual Orientation as an Immutable Characteristic," and "On Recent Developments in the Field of Brain Research," Wolinsky, op. cit.
159 Military officers may be reluctant to speak out publicly because their commissions are subject to congressional approval or revocation. Even if gays were allowed to serve "openly" by law, they might face denial of commissions or promotions in Congress.
160 All of the court papers and history of the Thomasson case are available at http://webhost.telisphere.com/thomasson/index.html
161 See the DeMuth employment case, next chapter. Military culture, remember, is hostile to expression of controversial opinions!
161a One other point about free speech arguments that anyone litigating this issue now (as with the 2004 lawsuits) needs to bear in mind: Even granting that there is a First Amendment right to “openness” about one’s psychological identity, one does not, when in the military or in any job requiring a “low profile,” automatically have the right to promote oneself publicly. That observation lies underneath the “don’t publish” or “don’t flaunt” ideas suggested elsewhere.
162 Randy Shilts, op. cit., p. 376. An Air Force Academy senior was investigated and forced to resign when a roommate found a letter from a homosexual in his room, indicating only that the letter's author was gay.
163 The military will not let "known" gays join the Reserves.
165 Letter by me to "Reader's Forum," The Washington
165a Ch 4 P. 210, pr. 1 (p145 ff). Our tort system could make the Free Speech challenges (as they affect civilians) to the Ban even more daunting. Consider the situation where a reporter, without permission, writes that a soldier, having once "rebutted the presumption," told the reporter that he is gay. Although homosexual status may likely not be defamatory in today's society, the repeating of a statement made by a servicemember might be (libelous). The reporter would rightfully argue that the capability to discuss actual cases is an essential component of the "political debate" recommended by the conservative courts, and therefore should be protected by free speech. The dangers in debating this issue (and others) properly place a real barrier in getting the public to see issues like this beyond "what's in it for me."
165b Ch 4, P 210, discussion of "homosocial
“Deference to the military” can still be challenged on the notion that the military must still have a “rational purpose” (related to its mission) for a policy that would otherwise violate constitutional rights of servicemembers. (See the new challenges to DADT at the end of this file.)
Circuit9- contains an updated interpretation of the events surrounding the military ban since early 1997.
Of course, when the military discharges personnel for truthfully revealing homosexual orientation in security clearance investigations, the military is arguably behaving "irrationally" (by subjourning blackmail) and therefore the military could be jeopardizing its historical appeal to the "military deference" doctrine. So any ruling that upholds a DADT policy must protect confidential disclosures of homosexual orientation during security clearance proceedings.
An extreme variation of the security clearance issue could occur if a
civilian gay with a high level clearance has a same-sex
"relationship" with a person in the military. Civilian agencies like
Generally, according to SLDN, the military has not been turning over information gained in security clearances (of civilian employees or servicemembers) to commanders for administrative “gay investigations,” but at least a few commanders have, going against the guidelines in the 1994 DOD policy, tried to take advantage of security investigations to seek discharges of putatively gay personnel. It is common (mid 2003 and later) for security investigators to “ask” servicemembers when there is evidence of homosexuality, and not to turn over such information to military commanders.
The heightened concern about security since the
On subtle observation: “asking” and requiring an answer (not allowing the
recruit or servicemember not to answer) might violate
the 5th Amendment as long as the military maintains a “presumption”
clause—that statements imply a propensity to act. In fact, the “Old Policy” might have been
unconstitutional for this reason (as in Meinhold
before the 9th Circuit). On
the other hand, if there were no “presumption clause” and eligibility for military
service were based strictly on a notion of “psychological status,” then
“asking” might be constitutionally acceptable. But asking might also violate a
recent 3rd Circuit ruling in a civil case against a
In conclusion, although a "don't ask, don't flaunt, don't publish" policy might seem necessary, it's a shame. It implies that some cultural variations (homosexuality) must be kept hidden from sight so that less sentient members of society (grunt) can do our dirty work for us.
In early June 2000, gay employees at the
167 In 1996, there emerged two conceptual "camps" in
attacking DADTDP. Allen Moore, Paul Thomasson's
attorney, emphasized the Free Speech right as assertion of one's identity, and
claimed the courts recognize that the Constitution protects our right to be and
say "who we are." He argues that DADT creates a "closet
paradox" and "conduct paradox," and that gains in fighting
invidious discrimination occur in small steps. "A Legal Challenge to Don't
Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Pursue:: The Thomasson Case Theory", discussion notes,
168 Chai Feldblum,
"Sexual Orientation, Morality, and the Law, Devlin Revisited,"
169 Maj. Melissa Wells-Petry, Exclusion,: Homosexuals and the Right to Serve (Washington: Regnery, 1993).
170 Wolinsky (op. cit.) points out
171 One of the most controversial "warning signs" is political powerlessness, as often argued by Chai Feldblum and Kenneth Sherrill. Sherrill, in his Steffan affidavit "On Gay People as a Politically Powerless Group," (Wolinsky, op. cit.) argues that most people as individuals cannot effectively make themselves heard by policymakers except through collective efforts. I'm trying to disprove that in this book! But that became an important point in arguing Romer.
173 Romer would be likely to invalidate any future Dornan-type law to exclude gays from security clearances or other civilian occupations. The "rational basis" for such a law might be the notion that a homosexual is narcissistic and therefore unreliable; but this is arguably refuted by empirical evidence as well as the American Psychiatric Association's 1973 declassification of gays as mentally ill; that would leave only the animus prohibited by Romer. But this is a very recent judicial resource.
174 Steffan, op. cit., p. 228.
175 MacKenzie, op. cit., pp. 49-50 explains the conduct and performance grading systems.
176 Nothing in the opinion prevents the administration from giving Steffan his
177 Refer to O'Callahan and Solorio, described above..
F178 Bridget Wilson, an attorney who works on many military challenges, wrote this to me: "The issue is that DADT creates no new substantive rights. Servicemembers always have the right to procedural due process. And, the administrative discharge system has long been held to satisfy the incredibly minimal standard for procedural D.P. . Servicemembers do NOT have an (inheritable) property right in their careers, like, for example, lawyers or (sometimes) physicians with their licensing that might somewhat expand the procedural due process standard. They get a "hearing" before an "impartial" body [yeah, right] and are guided by legal regulations, voila, Due Process!" As we'll see in the next chapter, even if a military career fell under the penumbra of "property rights," that may not help much.
"To dramatically oversimplify, there are two types of DP protection, procedural and substantive DP. Procedural is just as it sounds, you must provide some organized manner to adjudicate decisions. Substantive DP is the beast that 14th amendment scholars, let alone ordinary trench-fighters like myself have difficulty explaining coherently. I tend to describe it as the fundamental, core legal fairness that we demand under the 5th and 14th amendments. Abortion rights have been largely established under the rubric of substantive due process. It speaks to those rights so fundamental in the pursuit of life and liberty that they are an assumption upon which we base our decisions. The kind of autonomy of the person that says there are limits on how the state may control your decisions about contraception and abortion. Bowers v Hardwick was lost on a substantive due process claim. It is the loss of Harwick that makes military challenges tough."
My reaction to all of this is, that any "procedural"
rights implied by the New Policy are so weak as to be meaningless in practice.
Witch-hunts could be perceived as a Fourth Amendment (unreasonable search)
violation, even given military deference and the reach of the UCMJ - even
though military "inspections" are part of normal procedure. Usually,
Fourth and Fifth Amendment protections are cited successfully only in criminal
proceedings (when somebody will go to jail). It is true that military service
is probably not a "substantive right" (much less so than even
property rights) normally protected by "Due Process." So the
government, with employees or servicemembers, may try
to get around constitutional challenges by using "administrative"
rules and proceedings. If the Fifth is read with "common sense,"
though, the government (at least as a matter of equity) owes "good
faith" procedural due process in personnel matters; in practice, the
government should not be allowed to violate its own rules or even
Even the Defense Language Institute in
Also, an Air Force reservist, Dr. Monica Hill, was discharged for “telling”
after her partner developed a life-threatening malignancy. Had she been in a
legally recognized heterosexual marriage, she could have gotten a compassionate
deferment from call-up; instead she was discharged. (
179 Richenberg filed a Supreme Court appeal in April, 1997 (Queerlaw).
179a When officers leave the military involuntarily after “admitting homosexuality” they sometimes (under the 1994 rules) may be able to get what amount to severance benefits, based on years of service. The military will usually pressure the officer to resign instead or might try to raise the issue of recopument. This is a very tricky issue and a civilian attorney’s help must be sought.
180 Speech by Rob Bettiker,
181 Steffan, op. cit., p. 236.
182 Op. 111, CHANDOS compact disc, CHAN 8798. How about Richard Strauss's Ein Heldenleben (or Saint-Seans "Heroic March?"
183 Meinhold is the only "openly"
gay servicemember ever so honored. I did not attend,
but some of my friends did. I have visited Whitbey
once, and watched a low-flying air show over
184 Navy Times,
185 Andrew Sullivan "Telltale" from "An Agenda for a
Second Term," The New Republic,
Recent news reports have contradicted themselves. The NAACP alleges that the
Army goaded white women into leveling charges against black male drill
sergeants and officers - this seems rather outlandish. But "consensual
sex" among different ranks has apparently become acceptable at some bases,
indicating a breakdown of discipline among heterosexuals because of budget cu s
and lack of supervision. See Jackie Spinner and Dana Priest,
"Consensual Sex Was Rampant at Army Base, Inquiry Finds Breakdown of
Very recently, the Army and Air Force, at least, seem to be interested in restoring the appearance of equal enforcement by going after heterosexual fraternization and adultery. The power that a drill sergeant or commander has over his troops certainly justifies punishing all sexual misconduct by those in command severely. Will this trend continue?
188 See James Barry, "Messenger Overboard, My Losing Battle with
189 Caspar Weinberger and Peter Schweitzer, The Next War (Washington: Regnery, 1996).
Ch 4: General: In October, 1997, the Pentagon (responding to federal
law) began to require servicemembers convicted of
domestic abuse in civilian courts to turn in their weapons and to transfer them
to "non-combat" jobs. This is hardly fair to better-behaved (if less
roughshod) soldiers (remember the Bobbitt case in
General: According to the GAO, DOD has, since 1982, spent over $600 million investigating and discharging (and sometimes imprisoning) gay and lesbian servicemembers.
General: Some servicemembers who have resisted the ban in court report that prospective civilian employers regard them as "litigious." At least one person was asked to submit material from his own web page in a job interview (what - will they ask for digital photographs next??) and deliberately segregates out the story of his fight with the military.
George Stephanopolous, in All Too Human (New York: Little Brown,1998) suggests, on pp 122-129, that the "loss" on the military ban might actually have interfered with getting ENDA
passed. He feels that President Clinton should have
started with civilian discrimination first. Of course,
General comment on female soldiers: Of course, an all volunteer military
depends on the ability of women to perform physical tasks. Women are 13% of
today's military and 20% of the recruits. Technology, even in the military,
will tend to reduce the importance of the differences in upper body strength
and aerobic capacity between the sexes. Still, there have been concerns that
the physical differences may prove distracting in actual ground combat. See
Stephanie Gutnam, "Sex and the Soldier, The
Gay men tend to do well on the military's psychological tests for unusual duty, such as submarines. The Navy certainly is not successful if it thinks these tests eliminate "the queers."
Men often get a sense of person importance from participating on secretive or stealthy missions, like submarine duty. Problems will occur when they want to express themselves on their own.
Pat Kutteles, mother of Barry Winchell, was the
featured speaker at an SLDN Red, White and Blue Angles Picnic (http://www.sldnsf.org/),
In May 2001 the Army ruled administratively that the Military Claims Act does not require it to pay damages to Mrs. Kutteles.
In October 1999, President Clinton signed an Executive Order including victim’s sexual orientation as a possible indicator for more vigorous prosecution of a “hate crime” by a military member under the UCMJ; the Order also makes many communications (made in good faith for medical reasons) between a soldier and a military psychiatrist privileged (and it is not yet clear how well this will be followed); look it up at http://www.gaymilitary.org/policy.htm.
In December 1999, the Army accepted essentially a guilty plea for what amounts to second degree (though "premeditated") murder, and a court-martial sentenced the perpetrator to dishonorable discharge and life with the possibility of parole. We strongly believe that the individual should never get parole (as with Helvey in the Schindler case) and that the military should send a message that "anti-gay" violence is never tolerated. Vanity Fair, in May 2000, ran a detailed story, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Kill,” on the Winchell case. Apparently Glover wants a book deal to pay for a civilian defense attorney, and according to the article has no concept of the magnitude of his violent crime.
SLDN has sponsored a petition to stop the Navy clemency board in
Note: Steve May had his discharge hearing on
May has also been predicting the return of the draft. Indeed, the Army will
fall 6% of its recruiting goals in FY99, and The New York Times ran a
major story on recruiting problems on
On September 16, a panel of three Army colonels at
In early December 1999, Hilary Clinton (in her run for the New York Senate
seat) suggested that the DADT policy needs to be scrapped, and even President
Clinton, in a Dec. 11 radio interview, admitted that the policy is flawed.
Hilary has been echoed by candidates Bill Bradley and now Al Gore. The problem
is being covered by CBS "60 Minutes" on
In an op-ed "Don't Knock 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'" in the
Then, former Marine Corps Commandant Carl E. Mundy weighs in with a New
York Times op-ed, on
(Web addresses: www.calweb.com/~caholmes/mystory.htm; dont.stanford.edu/cases/ with sublinks /meinhold, /selland, /thorne, /steffan/steffan.htm, /holmes/holmes.htm; webhost.telisphere/com/thomasson/index.htm; members.aol.com/Kmeinhold, http://www.stevemay.org)/.
In May 2000 DOD reported an increase in gay discharges (28%, from 863 to
1106), with the largest increase at
In January, 2000 The New York Times ran an op-ed “Out of the closet in the military: Tolerance works,” by Colt Blacker (Stanford) and Lawrence Korb, in which the authors argue that there is practically no evidence to back up the Nun-Moskos theories about “unit cohesion” which justify “don’t tell.” The Minneapolis Star Tribune ran a whimsical letter, “Do Ask, Do Tell,” by Richard Broderick, in which the author, drawing on the ancient Greeks, argues that homosexuality should be a requirement for military enlistment!
In June 2000, 30 Congresspersons send a letter to the Pentagon expressing
concern over anti-gay harassment in the military, particularly at
In July, 2000, the Army IG found that Maj. Gen. Robert T. Clark was not
negligent in enforcing DADTDP at
In July 2000,
In "Study of Naval Officers' Attitudes Toward Homosexuals in the Military" by John W. Bicknell, Jr.; March, 2000, Submitted for the degree of Master of Science in Management at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, there is a survey of both Naval and USMC officers and enlisted as to whether they knew of other gays in the military personally, and 30-40% of enlisted (fewer officers) answered yes. I expect this study to be forthcoming in detail.
In January, 2001 the Army launches a new recruiting ad, “an Army of one,” replacing the “Be all you can be” on the theory that better educated potential recruits (even well before marriage) regard the military as destructive to individuality.
Apparently, in the days of apartheid, the South African military actually experimented with sexual reassignment surgery on gay soldiers. Visit http://www.datalounge.com/datalounge/news/record.html?record=9425
for a television movie proposal about the military ban, with the possibility of
individual story submissions (before
The literature (especially Shilts and Humphrey)
does contain numerous stories where gay soldiers received purple hearts or
demonstrated bravery in action.
Particularly interesting are Jeffrey Rosanbalm
(badly injured during the 1968 Tet Offensive in
In December 2000, the Center for the Study of Sexual Minorities in the Military (CSSMM), at the University of California at Santa Barbara, http://www.gaymilitary.ucsb.edu/, held a conference, “Don’t Askm Don’t Tell: Is the Gay Ban Based on Prejudice or Military Necessity?” In early 2002 CSSMM announced a significant fellowship in “gender, sexuality and international relations” for Ph. D. candidates “whose research in the humanities and social sciences examines war, peace, development, and other international topics through the lens of gender, sexuality and/or sexual orientation.” (Source: CSSMM Winter 2002 Newsletter, Vol. 3, Issue 2).
There is a poll on the ban at http://www.vote.com/ and it is running about 2 to 1 against
letting gays serve openly in the military out of 90000 “votes.” We have a ways to go on public opinion. On
Regarding the advances of women in the military, people who served in
A military law panel established by the National Institute
for Military Justice recommended that Congress repeal Article 125 (“sodomy”),
as well as Article 134 of the UCMJ and replace the laws with a
comprehensive Criminal Sexual Conduct Article, similar to Title 18 of United
States Code. It is not necessary to have separate provisions regarding sodomy
and adultery to maintain good order and discipline. Harmful behaviors, such as fraternization,
In August, 2004, the Court of Military Appeals declined to take it upon
itself to declare Article 125 unconstitutional, notwithstanding Lawrence v.
Texas. The case is United States v. Marcum. However military appeals
courts have overturned two UCMJ sodomy convictions based on
From SLDN: “After the Supreme Court’s decision in
There is now a memorial for gay veterans (in
SLDN’s Conduct Unbecoming, Seventh Annual Report contains some heartening trends (despite ht rise in discharges) and makes a few interesting points. The Navy has apparently been backing away from automatically discharging “admitted homosexuals” seeking relief from anti-gay harassment of other sailors (again, the pattern of anti-gay harassment is very uneven, varying tremendously among commands). The Navy sometimes now seeks some kind of “proof,” a practice not in compliance with DADTDP as written (where an unrebutted statement leads to discharge). The Air Force has continued to seek recoupment in violation of DOD guidelines, and has sometimes gone ‘fishing” for “evidence”—again a violation of the concept as to how statements under DADTDP are to be interpreted. The policy continues to affect female and younger servicemembers disproportionately.
SLDN’s Eighth Annual Report was published
The report can be viewed in PDF format.
In July 2001 the Army published a training manual on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue, Don’t Harass,” and it is available from SLDN. Here is a quote from it: "Proactive training and the prevention of any potential harassment conditions will help to build the environment of trust and teamwork essential to mission accomplishment." The guide concludes by stating that "Harassment will not be tolerated."
DC marking the centennial of the U.S. Navy's Submarine Force includes a poem “Glasnost” (about the waning of the Cold War) by a gay sailor (Timoth Beauchamp) written aboard the USS Henry Clay in 1987. Ironically, several months after writing the poem, the sailor was thrown out of the Navy for being gay.
Aiugust 2001: If the American public's growing
any indication, gays and lesbians might be on their way to serving openly in the military --
joining other industrialized nations such as
This according to a study to be released next month showing for the first time that a majority
-- 56 percent -- of Americans would favor such a policy change.
"Since the military works for civilians, they should reflect civil society on this," said
Professor John Allen Williams, a co-author with Laura L. Miller of the study, "Do Military
Policies on Gender and Sexuality Undermine Combat Effectiveness?"
The work appears as a chapter in a larger work by several academics from around the country
that will be published by MIT press called "Soldiers and Civilians: The Civil-Military
Gap and American National Security." (Christopher Merrill of the
IMPORTANT: From the San Francsico Chronicle
In the aftermath of last week's terrorist attacks, the Pentagon has issued an order suspending discharges -- including those of service members who disclose their homosexuality -- a spokesman for the Department of Defense said yesterday.
"First, gays and lesbians would be allowed to serve during any war, just as they do now, as long as they remain in compliance with the homosexual conduct policy," said Maj. James P. Cassella of the assistant secretary of defense for public affairs' office.
From SLDN, the
“Pentagon Authorizes Service Secretaries to implement ‘Stop-Loss’ Order Suspending Military Discharges, Including Those Based on Sexual Orientation”
The President has signed an executive order that authorizes (but doesn’t
require) the services to consider stop-loss orders,
and these may or may not include gay discharges. Services have several weeks to decide how to
implement HR 13223 (
What does appear encouraging to me is that the Bush Administration apparently does want to stop the witch hunts and allow (even encourage) gay soldiers who do not "push" their sexual orientation while deployed for this emergency to stay. The services clearly do not want people to get out of deployment by claiming to be gay (that is what a stop-loss means here)--and this was the case during the Gulf War.
Remember – the 1993 statute, taken literally, requires discharges of soldier who don’t “rebut the presumption of conduct” based on statements, but the Bush administration may be suggesting that the standard of rebuttal should be more liberal.
The military is in desparate need for Arabic and Farsi language skills--Shilts pointed out that the ban in the 80s decimated some of its intelligence capability (Shilts claimed that multi-language skills seem to be more prevalent among gay soliders). You wonder about it this time around... why we missed so much of the intelligence.
An overview by SLDN on the relationship between the “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy and mobilization:
Generally, administrative procedures for “gay discharges” may be slower but the DADT policy still applies, even to reservists and guard members and to civilian, off-duty activities, even though we hope that in practice (and with plain common sense) the services will not concern themselves with civilian activities before mobiliation.
Past experience is encouraging: For instance, in the
three years before 1966, the Navy discharged more than 1,600 sailors each year
for homosexuality, says center director Aaron Belkin,
quoting figures researched by Randy Shilts, who wrote
``Conduct Unbecoming,'' and Alan Berube, author of
``Coming Out Under Fire.'' But as military involvement in
The Human Rights Campaign and Servicemembers Legal Defense Network welcomed a letter
The use of NATO AWAC planes for
American homeland defense surveillance brings into service crews of NATO
John Malady, who became an Army
counterintelligence agent in 1995, after
a four-year stint in the signal corps, was discharged in June, 2001,
under the terms of "don't ask, don't tell." – see
The episode of the
The Center for the Study of Sexual
Minorities in the Military (CSSMM) made a disturbing announcement on
members of the Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services (DACOWITS) and has rewritten its charter to limit its ability to set its
own agenda. The changes mark the first time the Pentagon did not automatically renew the charter of the fifty-one-year-old group, which
advises the Secretary of Defense on issues relating to women in the armed forces….These assaults on sexual minorities in the military come as an important ….federal court decision also has threatened the status of women and blacks in the armed forces. Earlier this month, a federal judge struck down the Army's equal-opportunity promotion process, saying that "the Army's desire to create the perception of equal treatment is not an important government objective." The decision found it unconstitutional to consider "personal or institutional discrimination" since it favors one race or gender over another.”
SLDN has produced a fact sheet regarding military mobilizations with respect to DADT, a this link. http://www.sldn.org/templates/press/record.html?record=709
There is also a resolution from the international Human Rights Watch calling for the repeal of DADT; details at http://www.sldn.org/templates/press/record.html?record=716
During the Second Persian Gulf war (in
There are also reports of civilian reporters living and traveling in close
proximity to Marine Corps and Army units in
report of command abuse at a post in
In June 2003 former NATO Commander Wesley Clark told NBC’s Meet the Press that the military should lift the don’t asl, don’t tell policy and be able to accommodate open gays otherwise qualified to serve with a proper code of visible conduct.
was discharged a few days before he would have been eligible for a large Army
pension. The basis for the discharge was a home movie videotape of his
participation in private adult homosexual consensual acts, discovered by
civilian arson investigators when his
Another challenge comes
from Air Force Tech Sergeant Eric P. Marcum, in a complicated case. SLDN and Lamda Legal Defense and Education Fund submitted briefs and
oral arguments to overturn the military sodomy law UCMJ 125 on
In 1996, there was a
Democratic presidential candidates for 2004 have criticized the military DADT policy and gay ban. General Weslety Clark has been somewhat ambiguous about how far to go to change the policy. But when later questioned by CNN’s Paula Zahn, Gen. Clark said that military investigators “go and look at gay bars, they look at what they're doing in their off-duty time, which they really are not supposed to be doing. They're following them, and compromising them, and they're causing problems. That's what needs to be reviewed and either fixed, or the policy needs to be changed.”
For the record, I am reposting an SLDN announcement of a debate on the military gay ban at the high school from which I graduated in 1961. I am unable to attend because I am now paying my dues as a minimum wage worker, having been weeded of out IT during the recession, and must follow the regimentation of shifts. (And, people who whine about falling into the low wage world and who don’t cut it there wind up dying in the streets.) But, I guess that’s what a lot of middle class workers like me deserve, given global competition with people who have a lower standard of living. The debate location is one mile from where I currently live in December 2003.
Congressman Jim Moran (D-VA) has invited Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) and the Human Rights Campaign (
Panelists will include Sharra E. Greer, Law & Policy Director for SLDN; Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Vincent W. Patton,
The Town Hall meeting is open to the public, and will be held at
Yes, I missed this meeting. But
Annie Gowen reported this meeting on page B5 of the
next day’s (December 3) The Washington Post, with “After 10 Years, Telling
Tales of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: Veterans, Activists Speak at N. Va. Forum on
Gay Issues”. Alistair Gamble related his story of his discharge from the Army
when he was a student at Defense Language Institute, after he and his partner
were discovered together after curfew and valentines from his lover and
photographs of their vacation at Disney World were used as evidence of
“telling.” Jim Moran predicted at some constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage
would pass eventually unless there is sufficient organized resistance. Shara Greer, director of law and policy at SLDN, discussed
the military’s discharge of linguists and others with critical skills for the
war on terror because of the policy. In the same day’s Post edition,
Anne Hull documents another case with the story “How ‘Don’t Tell’ Translates:
The Military Needs Linguists But It Doesn’t Want This
One.” This is the story of Cathleen Glover, discharged after volunteering a
statement to the military that she is a lesbian. The
Two Generals and an Admiral publicly
acknowledged their sexual orientation for the first time in the New York
Times. The article is from the Associated Press, “Three Denounce
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,”
An episode of season 2 of Smallville, “Duplicity” on “TheWB”
presents Clark Kent as “telling” just one person (his African American friend
Pete) that he is an extraterrestrial; since he has “told” one person, by
analogy he would have violated “don’t ask don’t tell.” Another episode has an
Air Forcer recruiter approaching
The Navy has recently begun to bring
more civilian employees on ships as “mariners,” as sometimes they are more
cost-effective than sailors for advanced skills. Would gay civilian employees
in such a situation pose a “privacy” problem? Eric Talmadga, “Navy brings civilians on board to cut costs,
Crew is smaller, more experienced,” The Washington Times,
The Washington Blade on
The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) co-publishes
(from the Office of Public Policy) a fact
Tim Bergling provides an update on DADT in the current war on terror: gay discharges tumbled 30% in 2002, and some recruiters will attempt to sign up candidates whom they know are gay. See Pride 2004, p. 50.
Travis Stanton provides an article “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Think So”
Nathaniel Frank, of the CSSMM at UCSB, provides an op-ed “Revolving Door for
Troops” in the
CSSMM weighs in: In the wake of last week's Senate vote authorizing the Army to add 20,000 new soldiers, newly-available data provide fresh details about many of the 9,682 service members discharged for homosexuality under the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy. According to the data, the military discharged gays and lesbians serving in 161 different military occupational specialties between 1998-2003, including 49 nuclear, biological, and chemical warfare specialists, 90 nuclear power engineers, 52 missile guidance and control operators, 150 rocket, missile and other artillery specialists, and 340 infantrymen.
The data, which were collected by the Defense Manpower
Data Center (DMDC) in
that gay soldiers have served with distinction in both
Evelyn Nieves and Ann Scott Tyson provide a
report, “Fever Gays Being Discharged Since 9/11: ‘Don’t
Ask’ Ousters At Lowest Level Yet’ in the
The New Lawsuits challenging DADT
(See Loomis v.
Log Cabin Republicans is filing a new lawsuit to
overturn “don’t ask don’t tell” in late 2004, based on Lawrence v. Texas.
It is not clear if the courts (the Ninth Circuit, which has already, previous
From a 12/2006 press release from SLDN about another challenge to DADT:
“Among the plaintiffs named in today’s lawsuit are:
• Former Navy Lieutenant Jenny Kopfstein….
• Former Army Sergeant First Class Stacy Vasquez…
• Former Air Force Captain Monica Hill….
• Former Air Force Sergeant David Hall….
The plaintiffs are represented by SLDN and the law firm of Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP. Copies of today’s lawsuit, biographical information on each of the plaintiffs and related information on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” are available online at http://www.sldn.org/.” The press release (with much more detailed information about the service records of the individual plaintiffs) is http://www.sldn.org/templates/press/record.html?record=1718 Vasquez had been an Army recruiter who was forced to “tell” in a statement after a commanding officer confronted her with a report that she had been seen kissing another woman in a gay bar. (That is, she was pressured to accept administrative discharge under DADT in lieu of possible prosecution and jail for conduct prejudicial to good or and discipline.) Presence in a gay bar is not supposed to trigger an investigation, although the rules imply that a public display of (homosexual) affection can.
A PDF document of the complaint is at http://www.sldn.org/binary-data/SLDN_ARTICLES/pdf_file/1718.pdf
The U. S. Army Court of Criminal Appeals overturned the guilty
plea of a soldier Kenneth Bullock for heterosexual oral sex (sodomy, a
violation of UCMJ 125), with much of its reasoning based on Lawrence v Texas.
This ruling may well help in constructing more legal precedential arguments
against DADT, as above. See http://www.sldn.org/templates/press/record.html?record=1758
or Michael Dobbs, “Some Believe Ruling Undercuts Don’t Ask,”
Former Naval officer and Naval Academy graduate
Jeff Petrie has petitioned the Naval Academy Alumni Association for formal
recognition of a San Francisco based gay-and-lesbian alumni group. Technically,
for servicemembers no longer on active duty, such
recognition would be legal under DADT (although the question remains about callups). See Christian Davenport, “Gay Alumni Open a New
Chapter: Annapolis Graduates want Academy to Recognize California Group,” The
The U.S. Supreme Court agreed
is a parallel with the public schools. Under “no child left behind” public
schools receiving public funding must release names of students to military
recruiters. See Dean Dean
Paton, “Rift over recruiting at public high schools: A Seattle high school bars
military solicitation, touching off debate over
Jeffreu Toobin (CNN’s legal
correspondent) analyzes Solomon in The
New Yorker (“Sex and the Supremes: Why the Court’s next big battle may be
about gay rights”),
Supreme Court heard oral arguments on this case on
The Supreme Court ruled unanimously for the
government on this case on
Reuters news story by Jim Wolf, “Pentagon Spurned Plan to Initiate Enemy Homosexuality,” at http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/nm/20050116/us_nm/arms_homosexual_dc
Sarah Lyall provides
an article, “New Course by Royal Navy: A Campaign to Recruit Gays: Britain Says
It Hopes to Alter Services’ Atmosphere,” The New York Times,
The 2005 Initiative to Repeal DADT; relationship to military sodomy law
Link to my
letter to Rep Jim Moran (D-VA 8th Dist)
Repeal of DADT (based on the 1993 law, that is) would mean that homosexual conduct is no longer considered prejudicial to good order and discipline (a collectivist concept). What if UCMJ 125 were to be repealed by Congress, but not DADT? This sounds like a good multiple choice test question. Article 134 (conduct prejudicial to good order and discipline) could be invoked in “sodomy” prosecutions unless the administration (the Bush administration, now) were willing to revise the Manual for Courts-Martial to de-implement the discipline clauses of Article 134.
“Service members should not face discharge
simply for being truthful when seeking medical attention,” said Capt. Mike
Rankin, M.D., USNR (Ret.) a retired U.S. Navy psychiatrist and member of SLDN’s honorary board. “Knowing details such as a
patient’s sexual orientation is essential in providing the best possible
healthcare. Service members should not have to compromise their
well-being in order to comply with the military’s gay ban. Military
leaders should place the health of service members ahead of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t
Tell’ and instruct all healthcare providers not to turn in lesbian, gay,
bisexual and transgender personnel who seek out medical care.”
“Conversations between service members and their military doctors, psychologists and other military healthcare providers are not confidential,” said Sharra E. Greer, SLDN’s Director of Law and Policy. “Anything service members reveal to military health professionals can be used against them to start inquiries or investigations, and as evidence in discharge proceedings. Service members should be very cautious revealing any information regarding their sexual orientation or activities to military health care providers.”
Anne Hull, The Washington Post, reports in “The Stewards of Gay Washington,” mentions the sensitive situation when a Pentagon Lt Col was beaten by a same-sex partner, a sensitive matter for police who, if they report it, could cause a discharge under “don’t ask don’t tell.”
SLDN’s “Let the Serve” publication is at http://www.sldn.org/binary-data/SLDN_ARTICLES/pdf_file/2020.pdf.
In April 2005 a commentator on GLIL’s message boards wrote: “Knowing this group is for Gays and Lesbians for Individual Liberty, what exactly was your purpose in asking a Gay man if he'd ever served in the military? That's not unlike asking an African-American in 1940 if he'd ever voted.” Interesting analogy. I hadn’t thought of that one!
The New York Times
reported that the Joint Services Committee on Military Justice (JSC) has
recommended removing prohibitions on consensual sodomy from Article 125 of the
Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), in light of Supreme Court’s historic
ruling in the 2003 landmark case, Lawrence v. Texas. “The changes
proposed by the Pentagon's lawyers would narrow the definition to prohibit acts
of sodomy with a person under age 16 or acts "committed by force." If Congress follows the JSC’s recommendation, the UCMJ will be amended to
decriminalize consensual sodomy, a major victory for service members’ privacy
rights. Decriminalization of sodomy would also remove a significant
barrier to repeal of the discriminatory “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” statute. So far, the courts have not been willing to
extend the logic of
The Pentagon has since backtracked on its
willingness to support removing the military sodomy law, claiming that it will
emphasize the “good order and discipline issue.” But the Pentagon knows that
already two military appeals courts have overturned (two) sodomy convictions
because of the logic of Lawrence v. Texas (SLDN press release
The New York City Council and California State Senate have called for repeal of the DADT law.
“[T]he Legislature of the State of
It appears that during the War on Terror there are few administrative discharges under DADT based on conduct or statements of an Individual Ready Reservist while in civilian status. One can relate this observation to the “Queen for a Day” rule, and to the “Corporal Klinger Rule” that says one will not be discharged for statements made to avoid military service. Commanders are not obliged to attempt to discharge gay servicemembers under DADT; their administrative (non judicial) actions to pursue discharges occur at their discretion. About 80% of discharges are Honorable, even though SPIN numbers are applied. Evidence of coercive conduct or attempt to evade military service if followed by a discharge may well result in a downgraded discharge.
Also, if commanders have established a precedent for “tolerating” out homosexuals in their units and then suddenly change their minds (as when a servicemember nears retirement) and seek discharge, the notion of “estoppel” may be used to show that in the past the servicemember was not regarded as having a propensity to engage in actual homosexual acts.
A Marine Corps reservist has issues for having appeared in gay porn before enlisting, and the Marine Corps admits that it is not sure how to apply the DADT policy here.
An SLDN AP story in Fen 2002 discusses the possible loss of retirement benefits under DADT, in conjunction with the tendency for the military to enforce DADT “selectively” sometimes not discharging members that they need to keep (especially during war time). The case is that of Cpt. David Donovan, and the link is here. Generally, if a servicemember leaves before the twenty years, retirement benefits are lost. Generally, after 20 years, GLBT servicemembers have left voluntarily and “quietly” to get retirement benefits.
Military Treatment of Anti-Gay Harassment
Lawson, a 19-year old Army Private who was recently attacked by a fellow
soldier who learned Lawson is gay, was discharged January 5 from the Army. Officials at
legally residing in states of communities allowing legal gay marriage (right
The Boston Globe reported its own poll on
Loss of Skilled Personnel
According to SLDN in June 2005, there were 653 gay discharges in 2004.
· Health care professionals – 41
· Sonar and radar specialists – 30
· Combat engineers – 20
· law enforcement agents – 17
· security guards – 12
· linguists - 9
· biological and chemical warfare specialists – 7
· From deployed units – less than 25% of discharges
· decline since FY 2003 – 47%
· Women represent 15% of active duty personnel and 33% of discharges; in the Army the percentages are 14.7% and 38.77%; in the Marine Corps the numbers are 6.06% and 23.73%.
posts also reported higher than expected discharges. Training posts, such
as Ft. Leonard Wood, Ft. Jackson, Ft. Knox, Parris Island, Great Lakes Naval
Training Center and Ft. Benning all had slightly
higher discharge rates than non-training posts, with Ft. Leonard Wood alone
accounting for 12% of all gay discharges in the Army in 2004. Other large
posts such as
COSTS of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”
Secret Pentagon Lists of Protestors
A couple of scuffles over campus protests against military
recruiters (who flout a university's non-discrimination rules over sexual
orientation because of the "don't ask don't tell" policy and the
Solomon Amendment), raise the issue of terror watchlists
again. These incidents occurred at the
SLDN has posted “Pentagon papers” regarding these investigations, at http://www.sldn.org/binary-data/SLDN_ARTICLES/pdf_file/2859.pdf (or http://www.doaskdotell.com/content/pentagons.pdf) . The SLDN press release “Pentagon Releases Documents Acknowledging Surveillance of Gay Groups” is at http://www.sldn.org/templates/press/record.html?record=2859 and the papers include a letter to Va. Senator John Warner.
Dec. 2005: SLDN
“A story, first reported by Lisa Myers
and NBC News last week, noted that Pentagon investigators had records pertaining
to April protests at the State University of New York at
and William Albany in Patterson College . A February protest at NYU was also listed, New Jersey
along with the law school's LGBT advocacy group OUTlaw, which was classified as
"possibly violent" by the Pentagon. A UC-Santa Cruz "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"
protest, which included a gay kiss-in, was labeled as a "credible threat" of
“Private Kyle Lawson, a 19-year-old
resident, was Tucson
physically assaulted and threatened at Fort Huachuca Army Base after fellow
soldiers learned he is gay, according to a report in Sunday’s Arizona Daily
Star. Fearful for his safety, Private Lawson is leaving the Army, while the
soldier accused of his assault appears to remain unpunished.”
have been many disturbing reports of offensive demonstrations by an extremist
My blogspot links:
NY Times story in Sept 2006
Concerns about military servicemembers and ROTC students and their use of social networking sites (they could be discharged under DADT and even be subject to tuition recoupment):
Four more sponsors for HR 1059
discussion of the John Shalikashvilli op-ed in the
New York Times,
Iraq war veteran (and retired Marine) Eric Alva is testifying on ending the
DADT ban, story and Q&A by Jose Antonio Vargas in Washington Post
of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Corps Gen. Peter Pace shocked everyone with
his moralizing about homosexual conduct and his personal views about DADT on
in Spring 2007, has an article (by Janice Hughes)
about gay Marine Eric Alva, the first veteran to be seriously wounded in
A Navy doctor stationed at the Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD is being prosecuted (in 10/2007) by the Navy for filming midshipmen having sex in his home; media reports indicate that the Navy is likely to discharge him for being “openly gay” – a bit misleading way to put it.
C. Baldor, AP staff writer, reported on
The cases of Darren Manzella and Major Margaret Witt have become important in 2008. One blogger link that explains this is here. http://billonglbt.blogspot.com/2009/03/sldn-holds-freedom-to-serve-rally-on.html Witt has gotten a ruling from the Ninth Circuit that the military must show, beyond simple rational basis review, that her presence would disrupt “unit cohesion” in her environment.
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