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November 28, 2007

Comments

Sara

IMHO, that's a really big sacrifice.

If they are that committed, then they will obey the rules and do what needs to be done to stay in and serve. And no one is asking anyone to give up a relationship. They can do whatever they want off the base and in private, just like the rest of us. The problem is they don't want to do that, they want to shout it from the rooftops and make a political statement or play a gotcha.

clarice

Sara, I wasn't claiming an analogy--I was responding to someone who said you can't use the military for social engineering and noting Truman did.

MayBee

Well, everybody that knows me knows I'm married and I don't shout it from the rooftop. My husband is a huge part of my life. If I were in the military, I would want to put a picture of him where I could see it. I would want him to be able to visit me. I would want to introduce him to my friends. I would want him to come to the officer's dinner parties with me. I can't imagine gay people want much different than that.

MayBee

Then there's the whole issue of being stationed overseas, say in Germany, for a few years. The families live on base, the kids go to the base schools. Not if you are gay, though. That's a big sacrifice, Sara. I think.

Sara

Maybee, if you want all that stuff, then find another way to serve your country. Don't join the military. Join the Peace Corps.

Why should want you, in violation of the UCMJ and the sensibilities of the majority, get your way at the expense of everyone else. There are lots of unaccompanied tours and families live with it. And no one is forcing anyone to live in base housing. The waiting lists are long anyway. What's next, insisting the Navy take spouses and children on every deployment so families don't have to be separated for six months to a year?

glasater

This is from Hugh Hewitt's most recent interview with Mark Steyn.

HH: Now Mark Steyn, I’m trying to set up an exclusive here. You can request your absentee ballot in New Hampshire on December the 10th. You can cast it on December the 10th. If we go live at Midnight on December the 10th, can we get you to go down and get a ballot and come back and cast it so we can talk to the first real voter in Campaign, 2008?

MS: Well, (laughing) I should say in case Patty, my town clerk is listening, Patty knows, she’s a wonderful woman, but she knows I am not a U.S. citizen.

HH: Oh, you can’t vote! Oh…

MS: And I can’t vote. And I can’t vote in New Hampshire. The sad reality of life here is I could vote up and down your state in California.

HH: (laughing)

MS: …with impunity.

HH: Yes, you could.

MS: But the one place I can’t vote is where my great friend and my town clerk will be sitting there, and saying you’re not an American citizen, get out of there. But I can come over to your place and vote there.

This is the problem with voting in California. The voting poll books are never purged (dead people can still vote) and no identification--really--is asked for.

sbw

Rick: Could you explicate "including those decisions that assure the minimums of society of benefit to all individuals"?

Rick, my comments at Belmont Club on free speech might help.

humility belongs to those who appreciate from past experience their understanding of the world was not perfect and their better future depends on discovering through interaction with others where they may be mistaken.
Then this:
When one understands that society is the edge where any two cultures meet, the next question to consider is what are the minimum requirements for society where those two cultures meet.

Without going in to the mind experiment any individual in any culture can perform, the minimum requirements repeatedly turn out to be humility (I just might be wrong) and reciprocity (Others live their lives as acutely as I do).

Violations of those turn out to be a good "friend or foe" detector that stands independent of culture. Such a friend or foe detector would indicate the necessity to defend against aggression of the islamofascist sort you suggest.

Now we just have to inoculate others to recognize such understanding is in their own best interest.

Other Tom

Jane, your gay Army friend deserves all the more credit for choosing to serve even though she knew she would have to keep her sexual preference to herself. We need such people. But the fact that she did so does not mean the Army must therefore change the rules. She got what she bargained for, and God bless her.

MayBee

Maybee, if you want all that stuff, then find another way to serve your country. Don't join the military. Join the Peace Corps.

I'm just disputing the idea that it has to be political that gay people would want to live more openly if they are in the military. I believe it is intensly personal.
If you want to be a fighter jet pilot, and you are truly gifted at it, you have to make a personal sacrifice if you are gay- a sacrifice above and beyond what the straigh fighter pilot has to make. Or our country makes the sacrifice of not having a gifted pilot.
This isn't an issue I would make a voting decision on, and I understand the military's reluctance. It is something I wish could change, though.

Soylent Red

I don't pretend to know the answer to all this, but some things I can say for sure.

Depending on the branch, many, MANY people in the military don't start out being particularly enlightened when it comes to diversity. At best there will be a lot of ostracism. At worst there will be some privates getting beat up. If you think that can't happen without the perpetrators getting punished, guess again. Joe finds a way.

Also, this whole issue sets up a no win situation for the military services. You either offend the large numbers of conservative Christians (and Muslims) in the military, or you place gays into an environment where they will be exposed to some degree of kidding (in spite of the ubiquitous EO briefings). Since gays seem to have a pretty thin skin about their sexuality, and since religious conservatives aren't likely to give that up, there's no right answer. Not exactly a boon to recruiting.

Likewise, in my limited experience in the military, I have concluded that anyone under the age of about 40 speaks in a kind of South Park vernacular. That is to say people and things are ROUTINELY called "gay" or "homo" or "fairy". It's not meant as a a knock on someone's sexuality, but still that's going to be a problematic part of military culture that will necessarily have to change.

And, let's not forget that Truman's pen was not the final word on racial integration in the military. They were still having periodic race riots up until the 1980s at military posts around the world. These things take time to adjust out. My guess is most gay people won't want to wait it out, but would rather have it enforced by JAG officers.

Whatever positive effects this kind of social engineering may have, I guarantee you the negative effects of forced sensitivity are going to be manifold. Not to mention the legal bills.

I'm not saying it shouldn't be done. I'm just saying that it's going to be ugly.

clarice

I suspect you're right. I suspect that's way most military officers approve of it. Having said that, I'd add that most of the older gay men I know did serve in the military years ago when gays were not supposed to be allowed in and managed to hide their orientation.

As O recal DADT was Clinton's first act and it was done without consultation with the military.And was not terribly popular though peeople have managed apparently to live with it.

Rick Ballard

Clarice,

DODT was Clinton's backdown position. He retracted an EO that allowed open homosexuals to enlist when the Chiefs told him that he would have their resignations very shortly.

At least that's my recollection.

SBW,

Thank you for the reply. I lack your confidence that the folks who hold that 100 mean down to 100 can be brought to a level of understanding of the concepts that you're describing that would furnish the hoped for fruit. Robert Tanner is on the right side of the bell curve and still appears to lack the requisite skill set. He could propably understand the point but I have doubts that he would ever accept it.

clarice

Interesting, Rick, that sailed right past me. At least I've no recollection of it.

sbw

Rick, this is the first time in history that conventional means of protecting one's family and property are no longer likely to work. That makes establishing society's minimums the only plausible opportunity for security.

It is a sufficient first step to realize all this can be explained in a manner accessible to many ordinary people... certainly not all, but enough to recognize thuggery when they see it, see the importance of thwarting it, and face it down sooner than has been our practice.

Ann

Only Fred Sounded Conservative

Sorry for the delay in posting.

Rick Ballard

Clarice,

From wiki - "It was introduced as a compromise measure in 1993 and approved by then President Bill Clinton who, while campaigning for the Presidency, had promised to allow all citizens regardless of sexual orientation to serve openly in the military, a departure from the then complete ban on those who are not heterosexual."

I might be misremembering but I recall that resignations by at least some Chiefs were threatened.

Pace would have told Bubba to stuff it - Powell just rolled.

SBW,

I agree but what's the mechanism for getting the explanation out to the modestly equipped when the MSM ain't buying? Even if they did buy in, how's John Q going to deal with the whiplash?

It took three years for the President to stop babbling about "Religion of Peace" and Giuliani did a double back flip for the taqiyah artist last night.

That's a rock hard row we're looking hoe when you mix in the total misconceptions concerning "free" speech that have been peddled for forty years.

clarice

Glad you mentioned that last bit.Malkin reports the obligatory Moslem questioner was a former CAIR intern. Either CNN has the dumbest production staff in a really big field of overpaid ninnies or this was a deliberately stacked audience.

Ann

So Interesting:

Eeyore Democrats:

Losing Democrats

Elliott

I went looking for Hit and Run in one of the places he was last seen and managed to catch Hannity and Colmes.

centralcal, gloat away! Huckabee did not shine with the focus group. Mitt and Fred beat up all the other candidates and stole their Luntz lunch money.

I was wrong in thinking the focus group would declare Huckabee the winner and am quite pleased to have been so. I'm also pleased that Fred made a good impression.

bgates

Haven't seen anyone respond to the point the General made that Israel allows openly gay people to serve. Are religious conservatives a smaller faction there than here?

Sara, are you opposed to women in the service as well?

OT, that's a nice position: bless you for your service, hell no you get no benefits.

clarice

Most orthodox religious in Israel are exempt from Army service. Other countries do admit gays, as well--Netherlands for one.

clarice

Malkin has found 9 ringers in last night's debate.

hit and run

Ann, quoting Stephen Green:
put all the candidates around a big table, ply them with first-rate food and liquor, and just let them talk and argue with one another until—or beyond—last call...

Posted by: ann | November 29, 2007 at 10:42 AM

glaster:
perhaps jom could get Hit and Run to moderate the "Algonquin Round Table Debate".

Posted by: glasater | November 29, 2007 at 11:00 AM

Clarice:
Thompson has proposed that very idea.

Posted by: clarice | November 29, 2007 at 11:05 AM


I really can't comment on Fred's proposal, even though it appears glaster has spilled the cat out of the bean bag [sic].

But let's get one thing clear. When being plied with food and liquor, I would be more aptly described as an immoderator.

clarice

Well, Fred left out the food and drink and Hit, settling only on round table discussions, but I know if he thinks about it, he'll really want you there, Hit.

Soylent Red

Are religious conservatives a smaller faction there than here?

I don't believe that Judaism prohibits homosexuality. At least not as it is practiced by the majority of Israelis.

sbw

Which one, Soylent -- the former or the latter as practiced by the majority of Israelis?

sbw

Rick I agree but what's the mechanism for getting the explanation out to the modestly equipped when the MSM ain't buying?

One at a time, blog by blog.

Even if they did buy in, how's John Q going to deal with the whiplash?

I believe in the concept of cataclysmic change. People can suddenly recognize the emperor has no clothes on.

Jane

But the fact that she did so does not mean the Army must therefore change the rules

OT, I don't think there was any plaintiff wail in the account. She knows the rules. She wasn't complaining as much as expressing what a tight line it is. I'm in awe of people who love their country enough to toe it.

I'm also amazed that the CNN planting story has lived another day. First thing on the news this morning. WOW

centralcal

Oh, Elliot, please . . . just one time, can I really "gloat" and say I told ya so? grin.

I knew the minute his video aired he had made quite the statement. One had only to look at a speechless Anderson Cooper.

BTW, guys - it looks like Campbell Brown had quite the documentary last night on CNN (I didn't see it.) However, if you go to American Spectator's blog there is a link to a letter by Quinn Hillyer to CNN that is very informative, very interesting, and I hope gets more play in the media.

One of those retract or I sue, kinda letters.

Jane

Centralcal,

Can you put the URL for what you are looking at in the line about your reply that says "URL" because I can't find what you are referring to.

centralcal

The link from AmSpec to robertbluey about the CNN program is as you reqested.

Sue

Jane,

http://robertbluey.com/blog/2007/11/29/an-all-around-bad-night-for-cnn/>Here is the link, I think.

centralcal

I have also included the AmSpec post about it in this url.

centralcal

Jane/Sue - some reply comments seem to be missing. The link to AmSpec is in my URL (again), but I lost the link to RobertBluey - however you will find it in the AmSpec post.

MayBee

centralcal-
while you're at it, which video made Anderson speechless?

MayBee

Poor Campbell probably felt she had to host that show to counteract the "Mrs. Dan Senor, right wing propagandist" sneers she gets.
Too bad, 'cause it won't work.

centralcal

It looks like Red State has picked up on the CNN/Campbell Brown "Hatchet Job." Link in my url (I will forever be thanking Jane for that tip.)

MayBee - y'know speechless was really incorrect and I apologize. I would say it left him rather "aghast." (The 30 second "candidate video" by Thompson - shown early in the debate.)

centralcal

oops - forgot the url linky poo!!!!

glasater

centralcal--the link to your name is not coming through but thanks for your efforts.
The Bluey link worked for the Quinn Hillyer letter--and what a fine response that letter was to Campbell Brown's "Campaign Killers".

centralcal

Oh, and poor Campbell has Media Matters and MoveOn.org after her too, for calling MoveOn "American insurgents" relative to their General Betray-Us ad.

My, my, they are pretty thin-skinned.

Jane

And she looks horrible.

MayBee

Thanks, central!

Ann

Peggy Noonan is pretty good today:

Death, Taxes and Mrs. Clinton Only two of them are inevitable.

davod

What's with this obsession with deviant (oustide the norm) sex.

centralcal

I see Drudge has now picked up the Hillyer letter and links to Media Bistro who reprints it in full.

My favorite part of the letter:

"I could offer other examples, too, of snide and unfair characterizations made by CNN just in the short segment on Mr. Bossie and Citizens United, but our point has already been amply made. Broken Government -- "Campaign Killers," hosted by Campbell Brown, was a despicable piece of sleazy, tabloid journalism. I repeat our demand for the specific retractions and corrections listed in the first four paragraphs of this letter. And we hereby notify both you and anyone who (unlike you) cares about responsible journalism that we are willing and ready to take our moral case against you to the judgment of public opinion.

With disgust,

Quin Hillyer
Director of Strategic Communications
Citizens United"

Sadly, a similar letter could be written on many occasions to most of the MSM. I for one am thrilled that conservatives are finally fighting back vigorously against bias, libel and slander. It is only going to get worse the further into this election cycle we get - and the liberal media needs to be put on notice.

centralcal

I am so lame! Will delete old linky thingy still in url.

Charlie (Colorado)
In all due respect to Jane and any other gay or lesbian supporters, I'm sure that the military leadership is plenty professional to handle a platoon full of gays. But, it isn't the mature leaders who are the problem, it is those 18 and 19 year old young guys, who don't want to live and shower with an openly gay man next to them.

Sara, I remember a time not too long ago when the military had trouble with 19 year olds who didn't want to live and shower with openly black men either.

I also remember a time when I was 18 or 19 that I might have been uncomfortable around gays. I'm now convinced that indulging my stupid attitudes did no one any good.

boris

I'm now convinced that indulging my stupid attitudes did no one any good

Perhaps but dealing with those stupid attitudes would have been the problem of your superior officers. Apparently a number of higher ranking officers are less enlightened about indulging stupid attitudes at the current time. Since the basic purpose is to kill people and break things perhaps enlightenment can take a lesser role in comparison to their ability to perform that basic purpose.

As before, dunno myself but doubt that the shower thing is what they really are concerned about.

Cecil Turner

Sara, I remember a time not too long ago when the military had trouble with 19 year olds who didn't want to live and shower with openly black men either.

Not quite the same thing. And I'd find the unconcern a lot more convincing if it came from folks who've shared things like open-air showers and field sanitation facilities (or lack thereof) with a thousand or so of their "close friends" for extended periods. Or dealt with the forced sexual deprivation of long deployments (in gender-segregated units) and the inevitable squabbles and personal issues that result.

Moreover, there are problems with sexual harassment by predatory homosexuals today. And there are several institutional situations that are particularly prone to abuse (e.g., recruit training, shipboard operations) that tend to select for those it probably shouldn't. And militating for allowing openly gay members to fill those positions is similar, in my view, to advocating for male leaders for Girl Scout Troops.

Finally, the serious Bible-thumpers have real issues with the openly gay, and are able to back it up with reasonably pertinent scripture. They won't be convinced their position is wrong, and trying to get these folks to coexist peaceably is, in my experience, futile. And if forced to choose between them (~10-20% of the force, and disproportionately good performers) and gays (?) . . . I'm goin' with the thumpers.

boris

Stereotypes anyone?

four male Viennese conceptual artists who wore high heels and buckets on their heads but no pants, and who spent the evening building a plywood structure over the bewildered guests’ heads. Anthony Roth Costanzo, a countertenor, sang a 16th-century melody called “Flow My Tears.” And then the Gelitin members, along with three Icelandic artists, also men, from a collective called Moms, took the buckets off their heads and urinated — with dead-eye accuracy, said Dodie Kazanjian, a Vogue editor and one of the events’ hosts — into one another’s pails

BTW I think this was a dinner party. I suppose "dead-eye accuracy" would be much desired.

SunnyDay

How idiotic.

Sara

Sara, are you opposed to women in the service as well?

No. I am not a supporter of women in combat, however.

Jane

And militating for allowing openly gay members to fill those positions is similar, in my view, to advocating for male leaders for Girl Scout Troops.

Gawd I really hate how society vilifies men these days. All are suspect, gay, straight or whatever. (Is there a whatever?) And I'm not the lease bit sure that it's not necessary given all the pedophiles roaming the street. But men have in large degree become second class citizens in a lot of ways. That's not a good thing. And it is a really lousy thing to teach kids.

Sara

Via Atlas Shrugs Low Hanging Fruit:

Posted at 8:22 AM on 11/30/2007 by David Horowitz

It seems that Gay Keith, the Clinton plant, was not a Brigadier General and served only in the reserves.

I received this note from retired Brigadier General William Becker:

IN SPITE OF MY CURRENT DISTRACTIONS AT HOME I AM FORCED TO ENTER THE PUBLIC ARENA TO EXPRESS MY OUTRAGE AT THE CURRENT REPUBLICAN DEBATE AS MANAGED BY CNN. GAY KEITH IS NOT A BRIGADIER GENERAL. HE IS NOT EVEN AN ACTIVE DUTY RETIRED ARMY OFFICER. HE SPENT HIS YEARS AS A RESERVIST SOLELY IN THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA MILITARY BUREAUCRACY. HIS BIO IS PUBLISHED IN THE GAY ORGANIZATION DEDICATED TO VOIDING THE "DON'T ASK DON'T TELL" POLICY.

FOR DETAILS. YOU MUST NOTE THAT KERR WAS RETIRED FROM THE INACTIVE ARMY RESERVES IN THE GRADE OF COLONEL. WITH THE EXCEPTION OF A FEW YEARS SERVED ON ACTIVE DUTY AS A LIEUTENANT HIS ENTIRE SERVICE WAS IN THE RESERVES IN CALIFORNIA. HE WAS PLACED IN RETIRED RESERVE STATUS WITH THE CALIFORNIA NATIONAL GUARD RESERVES AND PROMOTED TO BRIGADIER GENERAL IN THAT FEDERALLY UNRECOGNIZED STATUS.

THIS IS CONSIDERED AN "HONORARY" TITLE SIMILAR TO THE PHD AWARDED BY UNIVERSITIES AS HONORARIUM. WE WOULD NEVER REFER TO SUCH AWARDEES AS "DOCTOR". IT IS ALSO NOTEWORTHY THAT HE WAS A GRADUATE OF UC BERKELEY AND SERVED AS AN INSTRUCTOR IN ACADEMIA. HE HAS NO COMBAT EXPERIENCE DURING HIS 43 YEARS OF "SERVICE" AND IT IS A DISGRACE FOR HIM TO BE ASSOCIATED BY THE MEDIA WITH THE ACTIVE DUTY MILITARY!!!!

THANKS FOR LISTENING TO THE VOICE OF WRATH OF THIS OLD MILITARY AVIATOR. BRIGADIER GENERAL BILL BECKER UNITED STATES AIR FORCE, RETIRED COMBAT VETERAN WWII, KOREA,
VIETNAM

clarice

I couldn't bear unisex bathrooms, now de rigeur in our most prestigious universities so I can understand any man who doesn't want to share bathrooms with gays. Sorry, that's just how it is.
Having said that, I suspect there are ways around that and that there are areas of service--i.e., not submarine duty--where all this is overblown.

How much of our military now is doing support work or medical services as opposed to living in trenches?

MayBee

I'm kind of offended by him being called Gay Keith in that blogpost.

SunnyDay

Well, CNN effectively managed to change the discussion among Republicans. I, for one, was not the least bit concerned with the Republican candidate's positions on "gays in the military." Sorry, I still am not. It is not a major issue for Repubs in this campaign for the NOMINATION of the Republican party.

We are so easily manipulated.

Cecil Turner

Gawd I really hate how society vilifies men these days.

Dunno, seems to me like common-sense gender segregation in appropriate settings (e.g., locker rooms). That segregation is ubiquitous in military field arrangements, and the primary means of keeping those sorts of problems under control. Perhaps that's not the most enlightened approach, but pretending it's no big deal (or not an issue except amongst bigots) is simply wrong. It's a major time-consumer for our already overtasked mid-level leaders, and the proposals ignore that a major policy shift hands them an extra set of headaches with no obvious solutions.

And while the Girl Scout analogy is hypothetical, predators using their military authority to sexually harass (and in some cases coerce favors) from subordinates is, unfortunately, not. In the several cases I've personally been connected with, the surprising common thread is how long the situations continued. If you're suggesting such don't occur (or that those with a propensity to misbehave don't gravitate toward those positions), I'd suggest you don't know what you're talking about.

Traipsing back toward the subject, this is a wonderful illustration of how to take a marginal question that's a presidential debate issue for a small percentage of potential voters and inserting it into the opposing ranks, thereby derailing serious discussion of important topics. The other "plant" questions (as well as the 9/11 conspiracist bible guy and kid asking the waterboard "question"; which looked a lot like proffering the liberal--and McCain--position that it's indisputably "torture") similarly did little to enlighten on any significant subject.

Sara

You are offended by Gay Keith and not the title of the post?

I am not at all familiar with the ways of the Army or the Marine Corps or the Air Force, all of which house their active duty in barracks. I am very familiar with the Navy and Navy ships of many sizes, from air craft carriers housing upwards of 5000 to sea going tugs with a crew of maybe twenty. My husband was Intake Officer at the Navy Recruit Training Center, San Diego for five years. He had those young recruits the first 3 days they were in the Navy. If they couldn't pass the swim test or the literacy test, they went no further and were not accepted for service in the Navy. But, the most delicate part of the job was talking to young men who were suspected of being gay and counseling them, without really addressing the subject head on. The concern was as much for that individual as it was for the influence they might exert on others. One situation has come to mind and my husband agonized over him. He was a good guy, a likable guy, and a guy my husband thought would ultimately make a good sailor, but he was so obviously gay, there was no question that it would only be hours before the whole recruit class would know it. My husband felt that his recruit commander would have to have eyes in the back of his head to protect this guy from the hazing of the others. He saw it as a discipline problem waiting to happen. A trip here, a shove there, isolation by the group when cohesion in training was necessary. All kinds of future problems, nothing so overt that could be charged, but under the surface, subtle, and adverse to good order and discipline.

And as far as women are concerned. I remember when they first relaxed the rules and let women serve on ships. The first 9 month deployment with women as part of the crew that my husband was on was a disaster. Six women left port, 4 came back pregnant, a 5th, who it was suspected was a lesbian, filed so many harassment suits, my husband who was the Command Master Chief at the time, spent most of the deployment at Captain's Masts monitoring complaints brought by this woman.

If you want to serve your country in the military, then you need to put aside your gender or your sexual orientation. You stop being a man or a woman or gay or straight and you are expected to become a soldier, a sailor, an airman or marine. There is no room for hurt feelings, there is no room for being different, there is no room for whiners and complainers or those so thin-skinned they see assaults in every word, every action, every reaction. It is not the civilian world and comparisons do not work.

Soylent Red

Which one, Soylent -- the former or the latter as practiced by the majority of Israelis?

Yeah, shoulda been more clear on that.

What I meant is that about 2/3 of Israelis are either secular Jews or of a more liberal mindset (they don't have the same "denominations" as in the US). Both of these groups, as opposed to Hasids or more conservative-types, don't view homosexuality as a "sin". Thus, the Israeli armed forces, like the Dutch armed forces, is not really analogous to the US Armed Forces in terms of the percentage of religious conservatives serving.

All of this is an interesting subject which I brought up with my classmates this morning. Amongst my carpool (consisting of a moderate Midwestern Christian, a liberal D.C. Jew, and male and female agnostics from Northern California) the consensus was this:

Because of the inherent inequity of the current system, and because we are excluding a percentage of people from serving their country, it's probably the right thing to do, but it will be ugly and present some challenging command problems, which none of us were all that excited about.

Fortunately, those most inclined to be bitchers and whiners will probably not have the stones to actually join up. I get the feeling that this is more about complaining than it is about missed opportunity.

Of those that do, a small group of them will be doing so only to pick a fight. Those are the ones that have to be weeded out somehow. UCMJ Articles 77-134 ("The Punitive Articles") cover plenty of potential ways on which to build a jacket for cause. Uncle may take some lumps initially, but eventually he always wins.

Also, we all agreed that there will be a lengthy natural selection process by which the fundies, homophobes and gays will sort themselves into and out of the system. Eventually things will level out, but it will take some time. During that time, there's going to be some fairly serious morale issues with some Soldiers. Again, another less than thrilling management issue to deal with. But that's what we get paid for.

Good news is: If we elect a Republican, we can press (or not) to deal with the issue rationally rather than at the hands of civil rights attorneys.

Charlie (Colorado)

Not quite the same thing. And I'd find the unconcern a lot more convincing if it came from folks who've shared things like open-air showers and field sanitation facilities (or lack thereof) with a thousand or so of their "close friends" for extended periods. Or dealt with the forced sexual deprivation of long deployments (in gender-segregated units) and the inevitable squabbles and personal issues that result.

Okay, so you're saying that I've got good qualifications for this.

And I maintain it is quite the same thing. I went to grad school at Duke, and one of the things I noticed about the older buildings was they had lots of water fountains and bathrooms; anoter was that all the older restaurants had take-out windows, even relatively nice ones.

Why? Well, the extra bathrooms and water fountains used to be "colored"; the take out windows were because colored people weren't allowed to sit in the restaurant and so had to eat outside.

In any case, your subtext here is that you don't think gay men can be trusted to control their sexual urges like "normal" men. Get over the idea that gays have cooties.

Cecil Turner

In any case, your subtext here is that you don't think gay men can be trusted to control their sexual urges like "normal" men. Get over the idea that gays have cooties.

Nonsense. Let me suggest you probably aren't going to convince all servicewomen that they have to share open shower facilities with the men . . . regardless of how well the men "control their sexual urges." And that is precisely the appropriate analogy.

Besides, these guys captured the main point quite well:

D. What'd you think about Hillary Clinton's gay general friend?
J. Awwww. Lord. If Hillary Clinton is going to make friends with a general, you best bet it's gonna be a gay one. [. . .]

D. And then somebody give a gay general a microphone.
D. Never give a gay general a microphone. He just went on and on with that gay general talk for like fourteen extra gay general minutes . . .
J. He just kept goin' on and next thing I knew I thought he was about to get everybody joinin' with a Judy Garland sing-along out there.
D. This ain't a piano bar, gay general.
J. Sit yer gay general ass down!

boris

you don't think gay men can be trusted ...

More along the lines that gay men are about as trusted as straights in equivalent situations. Gender segregation is basically about lack of trust for straight men. Why suddenly gay men are supposed to be EVEN MORE trustworthy is mostly PC think IMO.

The next level is perception. Military types are prone to PERCEIVE gay activism differently than the hoi polloi who attend transgressive dinner parties.

I tend to agree with Jane that those perceptions are subject to change over time. I'm willing to wait.

The comments to this entry are closed.

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