[This post was written by our friend Tony, I'm proud to be able to share it. - P13]
On Saturday, December 18, 2010 I heard Senator Lieberman (a supporter of Senator John "The sky is Falling" McCain who is a staunch advocate of Don't Ask Don't Tell) speak in favor of repealing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" by saying that this was not a Liberal, Conservative, Democratic Party or Republican Party issue but that it was an 'American issue" I agree!!!!
I also heard it mentioned that the staunch conservative (former Senator Barry Goldwater) once said that he did not care if a soldier was gay or STRAIGHT as long as he could SHOOT STRAIGHT. That sums up the issue very nicely. Can a gay or lesbian soldier perform his of her duties? If the answer is YES, then they should be allowed to serve openly. They have proven that they can do the job since they have been a part of our military for as long as I have been associated with the military (since 1955 when I joined the Temple University ROTC) and probably before.
I served full time for 35 years (20 in uniform and 15 as a Department of the Army civilian) at home and abroad, Germany, Italy, Korea and Vietnam. I am sure that I served with many gays and lesbians. When I was the US Army's Casualty Reporting Officer as a major in Vietnam in 1970, I am sure that many of the names of those who I reported to the Pentagon who were wounded or killed were not straight. At least ONE ot TWO of the over 58,000 names on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in DC have to be the names of gay soldiers. So if they are willing to serve our country and even die for our country, why not let them serve openly? They must wear the same uniforms, follow the same orders and are subject to the same laws as straight soldiers. A great majority of soldiers serving today say they could and have served with gay soldiers. Many former generals and admirals , the Secretary of Defense, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said we should repeal "Don't ask, Don't tell". Some other country's military have allowed gays to serve openly without falling apart!.
When I first went into the Army as a second lieutenant blacks were treated a second-class citizens and could only rise to the rank of colonel. Similarly, women could never be generals and they were segregated into the Womens' Army Corps or WAC. When plans were put in place to fully integrate blacks and then women, many said that "the sky would fall". Well it didn't and it won't this time.
Thanks to all who voted for this measure and thanks to President Obama for pushing this long overdue repeal.
Better late than never!