Join 3,411 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Discharge
April 3, 2011 2:33 PM   Subscribe

After chalking up 14,316 military discharges to its credit (261 from the last year alone), the reign of Don't Ask Don't Tell crumbled when Petty Officer 2nd Class Derek Morado's DADT-motivated hearing ended on Thursday with the three member panel voting unanimously to retain the openly gay soldier.
posted by hippybear (43 comments total) 26 users marked this as a favorite

 
Yes!
posted by nevercalm at 2:35 PM on April 3, 2011


About time! Congratulations to that soldier!
posted by spinifex23 at 2:37 PM on April 3, 2011


PSA: Policy is still active, and is likely to be so for the remainder of the year, pending a "training process" for personnel and subsequent approval of the President, the Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. That said, yay
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:40 PM on April 3, 2011


Wow, I didn't realise they had gotten far enough with the repeal for this to happen.

I'm assuming this changes nothing for the people who were kicked out under DADT though, right?
posted by anaximander at 2:44 PM on April 3, 2011


anaximander: Those who were discharged under DADT may be eligible to re-enlist. Dan Choi, of Knight's Out, the West Point Alumni group that has supported the repeal, has made tentative steps to do just that.

Also, Petty Officer Morado is a sailor, not a soldier.

But, yes, yay! Progress!
posted by charmcityblues at 2:48 PM on April 3, 2011


About time that something good came out of the Iraq debacle.
posted by UbuRoivas at 3:00 PM on April 3, 2011


Who was the snitch going through Morado's myspace page?
posted by Capt. Renault at 3:03 PM on April 3, 2011


Ack. Sailor, not soldier. I stand corrected, and apologize profusely for the error.
posted by hippybear at 3:06 PM on April 3, 2011


Also from 'Stars and Stripes' -- 'DADT' Could Be History by End of Summer, Pentagon Says
The Defense Department expects by midsummer to have completed enough “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal training that it can ask the president, defense secretary and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to certify the results and begin the congressionally mandated 60-day countdown to full repeal.

Just 200,000 troops, about 9 percent of the force, have gone through the training so far, according to Vice Adm. William Gortney, director of the Joint Staff. But the first progress reports coming in from service commanders over the past six weeks show “no issues or problems,” said Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Clifford Stanley.

“All is going well,” he told a House panel.
posted by ericb at 3:09 PM on April 3, 2011 [2 favorites]


MetroWeekly details the confusion and stress the investigation put Morado through:
As to Morado's efforts in advance of the hearing to reach out to Get Equal, director Robin McGehee said, "He was unsure what the process was going to be like and, just like us, very perplexed that he was hearing all these celebratory reports about repeal and why his hearing was continuing.

"For him, he was baffled .... He thought for sure his hearing was going to be put on hold," she added. "He was fearful that they were trying to make this happen before implementation."

... Before learning the outcome of the hearing, however, McGehee discussed the "emotional and physical stress" that she said Morado was facing and added pointedly, "It really begins to make you question why we're wasting the money on a hearing like this and also why were allowing the military to bully him."

Smith went further, saying, "The fact that everyone knows that the Pentagon hasn't discharged anyone since Obama signed the repeal law, and yet we are seeing, on the unit level, discharge procedures still going forward -- it's creating an almost harder position for some people."
posted by ericb at 3:13 PM on April 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


Related ...

Watch: The Story of US Army Cpl Andrew Wilfahrt, a Gay Soldier Who Died in Combat Last Month in Afghanistan
OutServe, the underground network of actively serving LGBT service members, and the Courage Campaign share with us a video from the parents of US Army Corporal Andrew Wilfahrt, a gay soldier killed in combat last month in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan.

Wilfahrt was forced to serve in the closet, as all service members still must. OutServe reports that in addition to Corporal Wilfahrt, at least three LGBT soldiers have died in combat since 'Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’s' conditional repeal was signed into law on December 22, 2010.

Says Corporal Wilfahrt’s mother Lori: "The stories we’ve heard from people in his unit indicate that he kept some people calm when things got rough. People in his unit knew he was gay…and they didn’t care."

Said Jonathan Hopkins, OutServe spokesperson and gay combat veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan:

"Corporal Wilfahrt epitomized the courage, dedication and selflessness that gay and straight troops alike have shown in battle since our nation’s founding. Ultimately Corporal Wilfahrt’s story is not about differences or politics, but the values that unite all who wear the proud uniform of our nation—loyalty to each other, love of country, and the willingness to give their lives in its defense."

To the Wilfahrts, thank you for your story, and condolences on your loss.

The repeal of 'DADT' has yet to be certified.
posted by ericb at 3:20 PM on April 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


About fucking time. The formal end to this nonsense can't come fast enough.
posted by Forktine at 3:25 PM on April 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


(261 from the last year alone)

Really? Aren't we having trouble maintaining personnel levels or whatever? Neo-cons: your hero Barry Fucking Goldwater was in favor of gays in the military. Listen to him.
posted by jonmc at 3:29 PM on April 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


.

Er, !
posted by jessssse at 3:34 PM on April 3, 2011


This is good and all in terms of social progress, but part of me thinks that maybe the fight should have been to get straight people barred from the military too....
posted by spectrevsrector at 3:46 PM on April 3, 2011 [3 favorites]


This is good and all in terms of social progress, but part of me thinks that maybe the fight should have been to get straight people barred from the military too....

I'm neither pro-war nor anti-military, but the fact is that the military is one of the largest employers in the United States. This is an issue of employment discrimination, plain and simple, and having it removed here is hopefully a step toward something like ENDA.
posted by OverlappingElvis at 3:55 PM on April 3, 2011 [3 favorites]


Yes, sorry, glib point coming from somewhere that does have those employment protections.

Shouldn't take them for granted...
posted by spectrevsrector at 3:59 PM on April 3, 2011


This is good and all in terms of social progress, but part of me thinks that maybe the fight should have been to get straight people barred from the military too....

There are some in the LGBT community who agree with you.

'Against Equality' opposes the repeal of DADT, because nobody should be in the military. *
posted by ericb at 4:04 PM on April 3, 2011


Which is silly, but whatevs.

Way to go, Morado!
posted by klangklangston at 4:14 PM on April 3, 2011


It's not 'over' yet, people could still be discharged by different panels.
posted by delmoi at 4:27 PM on April 3, 2011


I can't wait to have to explain the character of Klinger from M*A*S*H to my kids some day.
posted by inedible at 4:40 PM on April 3, 2011 [2 favorites]


I can't wait to have to explain the character of Klinger from M*A*S*H to my kids some day.

Just tell them he was a good fucking soldier. (no pun intended)
posted by Bighappyfunhouse at 5:16 PM on April 3, 2011


inedible: Klinger was after a Section 8 - a discharge for being crazy. He tried to convince the army he was crazy by pretending a delusion that he was actually a woman. Homosexuality had nothing to do with it. In fact, in one episode, a psychiatrist offered to have him discharged as a homosexual and he refused the opportunity.

So you will still have to explain Klinger to your kids, but not because of DADT's repeal. They'll just be baffled that anyone would think transgendered people were mentally ill. (Hopefully.)
posted by Anyamatopoeia at 5:17 PM on April 3, 2011 [6 favorites]


Neo-cons: your hero Barry Fucking Goldwater

Neo Cons were not fans of Barry Goldwater. Also, most neo-cons are in favor of repealing don't ask don't tell, afaik.
posted by empath at 6:31 PM on April 3, 2011


Really? Aren't we having trouble maintaining personnel levels or whatever? Neo-cons: your hero Barry Fucking Goldwater was in favor of gays in the military. Listen to him.

Nope! Retention levels are at record highs. Not a lot of military members want to get out and face the economy right now. The Air Force, Coast Guard, and Navy have all at various points in the past two years offered people instant outs, no questions asked, get out of jail free cards because of it.
posted by QuarterlyProphet at 6:48 PM on April 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


Well, whether or not we're currently using 'stop loss' orders, for much of the 18 years of DADT, we WERE.

And homophobes have cost this country about as many service people as Enemy Action did: over a full Division's worth in the past 18 years.
posted by AsYouKnow Bob at 7:31 PM on April 3, 2011


Fabulous! One out of three! Now the Navy just needs to bring back rum, and the lash!
posted by orthogonality at 8:14 PM on April 3, 2011 [3 favorites]


This is progress.
posted by theora55 at 9:16 PM on April 3, 2011


Fabulous! One out of three! Now the Navy just needs to bring back rum, and the lash!

Now that they are retaining sailors with a fondness for other seamen.
posted by tim_in_oz at 2:46 AM on April 4, 2011


YES WE CAN! YES WE CAN!
posted by Aizkolari at 5:02 AM on April 4, 2011


Training process? WTF? What kind of training do you need to stop discharging people for being gay?
posted by callmejay at 7:21 AM on April 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Neo-cons: your hero Barry Fucking Goldwater was in favor of gays in the military.

Goldwater was many things, but a hero to neo-cons is not one of them. And I don't think he'd be a fan of them, either.
posted by Kadin2048 at 8:01 AM on April 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


callmejay: "Training process? WTF? What kind of training do you need to stop discharging people for being gay?"

"Now, show me using the mannequin exactly what you would say to a soldier who has come out as homosexual."

"You're discharged, son. Clear out your bunk."

"All right, good. Nice. Now... let's try it again, but this time don't tell the soldier he's discharged."

"..."

"......"

"........."

"And that's a wrap, great job. Sign here. Next!"
posted by gilrain at 9:05 AM on April 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


inedible: Klinger was after a Section 8 - a discharge for being crazy. He tried to convince the army he was crazy by pretending a delusion that he was actually a woman. Homosexuality had nothing to do with it. In fact, in one episode, a psychiatrist offered to have him discharged as a homosexual and he refused the opportunity.

The Section 8 discharge was very frequently used to dismiss gay servicemen, specifying 'sexual perversion' as the manifestation of their psychological health issue.
posted by FatherDagon at 9:24 AM on April 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Training process? WTF? What kind of training do you need to stop discharging people for being gay?

Er, tell the higher ups and other narrow-minded people that homophobia=bad? I welcome such training--maybe people will learn something from it.
posted by Melismata at 9:29 AM on April 4, 2011


Training process? WTF? What kind of training do you need to stop discharging people for being gay?

Whenever there's new anti-discrimination regulations introduced in the military, personnel have to be trained so that not only can they abide by them, but also enforce them. They have to know what procedures to use, what's acceptable and what's not, how the chain of command works with these things, etc. If people's jobs (and more) are on the line, it's worth doing right.
posted by Lord Chancellor at 9:29 AM on April 4, 2011


I don't think gay people should be allowed in the military.

Of course, I don't think not-gay people should be allowed in the military, either. Preferably everyone would be discriminated against, so nobody could join. "Hey! I'm a carbon-based lifeform! Will someone please kick me out now?".

I always thought joining the military was one of those super-not-okay things gay people would know better than most people not to do, along with applying to be a state executioner, mob cutthroat, torturer for the CIA or an instructor at one of those "tough love" camps for 'troubled'/gay/whatever teens. It's an odious organization.

Obligatory: The Draft Dodger Rag
posted by dunkadunc at 5:08 PM on April 4, 2011


Preferably everyone would be discriminated against, so nobody could join.

Doesn't really fit into the term discrimination if there isn't one subject versus another subject.

I'm currently in the military (leaving this month), and I understand your views. However, let is suffice to say that neither myself nor the gay men and women who I have met who serve the public agree with you. You should say "I don't think gay people should be in the military," not "allowed" as the second one sounds much more like you want to legislate your point of view.
posted by Lord Chancellor at 5:38 PM on April 4, 2011


I am, however, interested in seeing your list of permissible organizations to serve under and the "odious" ones. Is it militaries in general? Is a gay man okay to join the Swedish Army? Is it because it's the United States? Are those that work in the federal government also the equivalent to a mob cutthroat? How about people who work for Florida because, I mean, that state is whack. All those dirty public employees just making a corrupt institution like Florida stronger? The nerve.
posted by Lord Chancellor at 5:41 PM on April 4, 2011


FatherDagon: Doesn't change the fact that a psychiatrist offered to send him home for being gay, and he balked at the prospect, explicitly insisting that he was just run-of-the-mill crazy.

I wish I remembered which episode that was.
posted by Anyamatopoeia at 6:40 PM on April 4, 2011


I was politically active when DADT when first enacted. I remember DADT was touted as the great compromise, with the right-wingers firmly opposed to it. (We progressives wanted Clinton to just tell the military to suck it up and not discriminate on gayness.) I still find it somewhat strange now to see the right-wingers -- who are much further to the right than they were in the 90s -- for DADT, a Clinton program.
posted by phliar at 6:51 PM on April 4, 2011


Service Chiefs Testify They Have Not Run Into Problems In Implementing DADT Repeal.
posted by ericb at 12:04 PM on April 7, 2011


Good news. These days, I'll take any good news I can find.
posted by chairface at 3:15 PM on April 8, 2011


« Older Vladimir Nabokov exhumed in video...  |  Flute jam aboard the Internati... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments