Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Gays, The Military and Y2K Events

If we are going to ban gays in the military, which the present policy effectively does, I wish that we would at least be open about our reasons for doing it. The “unit cohesion” and “good order and discipline” things just don’t sell well with me.

For one thing, they are precisely the same arguments that were used to prevent integration of people with skin the color that we didn’t like from serving in other than servant roles. Now I see black guys and white guys hugging each other, and a white guy weeping openly when his black buddy gets killed. So much for that theory.

Our own Duncan Hunter came out with the “close quarters in combat” thing and gays seeing their… Oh, it’s just too comedic. One envisions an operation coming to a halt because in the heat of combat a gay soldier could not resist dropping his rifle to grope the guy next to him.

I don’t think there are any quarters closer than a diesel submarine, and we had some gay guys in the boats. Any sexual activity would have resulted in their discharge, but their preference was never really all that secret and I don’t recall that it was ever an issue. A few guys disliked gays and would harass them and the rest of us would tell them to knock it off.

The argument is made that half the military men hate gays so bad that they will quit, and that enlistment will plummet when all the macho men who are enlisting now refuse to do so when they find out that they will have to serve with gays. That’s what was predicted in Canada and Britain as well, but it turned out to be a Y2K event. From Steve Chapman at,

In Canada, 45 percent of service members said they would not work with gay colleagues, and a majority of British soldiers and sailors rejected the idea. There were warnings that hordes of military personnel would quit and promising youngsters would refuse to enlist.

But when the new day arrived, it turned out to be a big, fat non-event. The Canadian government reported "no effect." The British government observed "a marked lack of reaction." An Australian veterans group that opposed admitting gays later admitted that the services "have not had a lot of difficulty in this area."

The truth is we don’t allow gays because the legislators in Congress have a majority who are Christianist fundamentalists and are morally opposed to homosexuality. If that is the will of the nation, which we all know it is not, then so be it. Come right out and say that we don’t allow gays to serve in our military because we are a “pure” nation that doesn’t want to be defended by a bunch of people with “immoral, disgusting and vile sexual habits.”

Um, you do know that is sarcasm, right?

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