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The Lesson of DADT Repeal For Gay Marriage

The Lesson of DADT Repeal For Gay Marriage

We have returned to the pre-Clinton policy of leaving it up to the military as to whether and on what terms servicemen and servicewomen may openly acknowledge same sex sexual orientation. 

Contrary to popular media hype, repeal of the law does not itself require the military to allow open service by gays:

(b) EFFECTIVE DATE.—The amendments made by subsection (f) shall take effect only on the date on which the last of the following occurs:

(1) The Secretary of Defense has received the report required by the memorandum of the Secretary referred to in subsection (a).

(2) The President transmits to the congressional defense committees a written certification, signed by the President, the Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, stating each of the following:

(A) That the President, the Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff have considered the recommendations contained in the report and the report’s proposed plan of action.

(B) That the Department of Defense has prepared the necessary policies and regulations to exercise the discretion provided by the amendments made by subsection (f).

(C) That the implementation of necessary policies and regulations pursuant to the discretion provided by the amendments made by subsection (f) is consistent with the standards of military readiness, military effectiveness, unit cohesion, and recruiting and retention of the Armed Forces.

There were a number of arguments in favor of (and against) repeal, but the one argument which carried zero weight with me was that prompt action was necessary to avoid having the change imposed through the courts.

How convenient this argument was considering that leaving such matters to popular will (whether by legislature or referendum) is the exact opposite of the strategy to date both as to DADT repeal and gay marriage.  The prospects of a judicially imposed military policy were slight, notwithstanding trial court rulings to the contrary.

That is not to say that the legislative rather judicial than approach was wrong.  My issue is that the overhyped threat of judicial action was used as an excuse by some not to take a position on the merits.

Repeal of DADT will have lasting societal impact and acceptance precisely because the legislative vote reflected changing societal views and public opinion, and will not be seen as having been forced on society by the sole unelected branch of government.

Not everything which is desired or good constitutes a constitutional right to be obtained through the courts.

When courts stretch to find constitutional grounds for political ends, the result is societal illegitimacy and lingering political turmoil.  Just ask Roe v. Wade.

Democracy worked on DADT repeal, which is a lesson advocates of gay marriage would do well to learn.

Update:  Commenters have pointed out that this repeal should not have been passed during a lame duck session.  I think that is a legitimate point, which I have made before about social legislation.  Nonetheless, the 65-31 vote, including eight Republicans in favor, increases the legitimacy even in a lame duck session.

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Comments

Serving in the Armed Forces is a NOT A RIGHT. You must meet the qualifications – mental, physical, character/moral/legal. At least that's the way it was for decades and decades. Now in our "Oprah-ized" society, it like everything, has become a "right".

More often than not, homosexuals define themselves by their sexuality. More often than not, gay men are slightly effeminate, very sensitive and thus, lack a certain aggressiveness (killer instinct) that is needed in warriors (duh).

Gays are disproportionately represented in the news media and show business (same thing?), thus they gay agenda is omnipresent in our daily lives. He who has the microphone, yadda, yadda, yadda……

Obama's dream of feminizing the USA, of "de-clawing" the USA and turning the USA weak and meek is succeeding.

No, this is the result of a marxist insurgency and the ongoing efforts of the left to recast opposition to homosexuality from being moral to being bigoted. The polling for this issue was skewed, and the military report was undersampled for combat troops seeing acutal combat. The end result will be redefining morality to be immoral within the culture of the military, to then be used to redefine homosexuality as normal within society.

When people advocate the homosexual agenda either directly or indirectly, they are attacking the family, the substrate of society. Its not a primary cause, but failure to repress perverted group urges within society is a symptom of impending disintegration. The attacks on JuedoChristian pastors in the military will make it nearly 100% Episcopal. Rural folks who make up the majority of the front line folks will not be converted to accept homosexuality through the military. This issue is a testament to the moral and spiritual bankruptcy of a nation willing to sell its military and soldiers to the highest bidder for perverted gain.

Shame on you America, and may you continue to burn.

Repeal of DADT will have lasting societal impact and acceptance precisely because the legislative vote reflected changing societal views and public opinion, and will not be seen as having been forced on society by the sole unelected branch of government.

Instead, it was forced on society by a lame duck. >.

What irks me the most is that this was carried out in Lame Duck. It is social engineering at it's worst and done in back-room deals. I don't question the ability of gays to serve, fight and be warriors. It is the process that I am upset with.

So much for the most transparent Congress in history.

And good riddance.

If the State wants to recognize in some official capacity the work of the Church, that's their business, though I think it's wrong and would love to see civil unions become the norm for all, leaving the sacrament of marriage to the Church's purview.

But, we don't see anyone clamoring for the Church's witness to have a say-so in a divorce proceeding even though the Church's approval of the sacrament is binding in the State's eyes. What if all those in attendance at the original event and giving witness to the sacrament, weighed into the court proceedings and demanded that the contract "until death do us part" be honored without exception? What if any future partnership had to pass muster with the original oversight of the Church? Does the Church have a binding interest in the union it created?

How can the State pick and choose when to recognize the Church's authority in the union, but not recognize its authority in the dissolution? Why isn't that a valid argument for getting the Church out of the State's business?

Let's shut down the agenda and just get on with the State's legal oversight of a partnership. Let the Church do its thing. Let the State do its thing.

Bill,

What exactly is the lesson to learn for marriage equality? That equal protection and due process violation redress should wait for popular opinion?

And as to this lame duck legitimacy nonsense, if it was such an issue, where is the push to have Congress's term end on election day?

mugwa777 –
the surveys went out to folks' home address and you enter a personally identifiable number to respond.

Yeah, we ALL know how that goes.

This fellow put it better than I can:
* I can see the way the political winds are blowing on this.
* They can trace this ID number back to my home address
* I have absolutely nothing to gain by filling this out
* If this information is leaked or released, it could damage my career
= crumple crumple, toss
I don’t care about the results that much one way or another. I just wish more of the public understood that the survey and subsequent leaks were a giant piece of propaganda from the beginning.
— Alaska Jack (Quote)

This will end up doing the reverse of what they intend and getting more homosexuals discriminated against. (Just using their language as a point)

The mind your own business clause as I like to call DADT wasn't broken, I don't know why they wanted this passed, now watch what happens next

For and against the repeal of DADT:

1. Gays already serve in the military, and some of them serve openly.
2. Gays are not necessarily effinite like Øbama. Some are very blokey.
3. Not all gays serve in a capacity of being gunners etc. but tend to be tech heads or linguists.
4. It is more harmful to have a closeted gay in the armed services than have them serving in an open fashion. A closeted gay is left in a position of being afraid of being found out and therefore more open to espionage due to blackmail – this does not apply to the little creep known as Matthew Bradley.

5. Under DADT a gay can serve openly but if that person ends up in the crosshairs with someone who does not like him/her then a career is ended when that person dobs on him/her leading to the gay being disciplined and then ousted from the military.

On top of this, it might be a good idea to see how having openly gay servicemen and women works in the Israeli services.

Whilst I am straight and generally not an advocate for gay matters, I do think that the repeal of DADT can be good and it can be bad for the military. What I see is a mixture of the reasons for repeal and against repeal, but some of the reasons that I have seen espoused by people who have little contact with gays are generally invalid.

With the repeal of DADT there needs to be a tightening of those rules relating to sexual harassment which will see both gay and straight people being treated equally. For example that Navy nursing officer should still be kicked out of the Navy because she was fraternizing with a person who was not an officer.

#5 is flat BS.
All you have to do is not do things like go on TV and say "hi, I'm a gay service member," not go in uniform to be part of a gay pride parade, not kiss your same sex boyfriend/girlfriend in front of the commander. (All actual examples.)

It doesn't matter what the rules are. They will be ignored, just like they are now.

"More often than not, gay men are slightly effeminate, very sensitive and thus, lack a certain aggressiveness (killer instinct) that is needed in warriors (duh)."

Speaking as someone who was (recently) combat arms, whether you're good at fighting has nothing to do with your sexuality and everything to do with your personality. The best soldiers, in terms of individual prowess, tend to be the alpha males.

There's nothing wrong with a gay guy as an individual soldier, the problem is in making the whole team work together. The bulk of soldiers are males aged 18-25 because that's the demographic that can do the job and is willing to sign up for it. However, that demographic has problems. In a combat arms unit, the biggest one, by sheer number of disciplinary problems, is drinking, but a close second is issues with wives and girlfriends. My old unit had one guy who married a stripper out of basic; this guy was a capable soldier, but because he kept lying about stuff out of a misguided belief that he was saving his marriage, he kept getting in trouble until he was booted out.

But at least when you're deployed with an all male unit, those problems are on another continent. When I was deployed, I had the misfortune of beng attached to a support unit with males and females. At that unit, sex was the biggest disciplinary problem by far. General order #1 prohibits soldiers having sexual relations, and being 18-25, a good number ignore it, and their chain of command actually spent time and effort sneaking around to find people having sex. Then those people had to be punished, and it lent itself to even more favoritism and infighting.

The worst problem is that the support units have just gotten used to "this is how things are," and notably, the military is eliminating support jobs for contractors. The clowns I was with could barely get a mission together to drive up and down route Irish. They simply have no clue of the problems females are causing, and I doubt that adding gays to the mix would make much of a difference for them.

But in a combat arms unit, you need a high level of teamwork to pull off complex battle drills. Everyone has to know their job backwards, and that requires every individual paying close attention while doing constant drilling and training. Throwing openly gay 18-25 year old males into the mix is an extremely dangerous social experiment, and I worry that people may die as a result of it.

"Not all gays serve in a capacity of being gunners etc. but tend to be tech heads or linguists."

90% of the military is support, so you'd expect 90% of gays are in support. Linguists just get a lot of media attention because you can make a facile argument from anecdotes of gay linguists being booted out when we're short on people who speak Arabic. I've never seen any evidence to support the contention that gays are more or less prevalent in combat arms.

"What I see is a mixture of the reasons for repeal and against repeal, but some of the reasons that I have seen espoused by people who have little contact with gays are generally invalid. "

Here's another thought: the bulk of active duty military service members serve (like me) their initial term and get out. The vast majority of gay service members, therefore, are required to be closeted for about 5 years. They're from the ages of 18-25, and I think there's a strong argument to be made that they are much better off staying in the closet for that period of time. With one notable exception (he frequently referred to himself as "the gayest man alive"), the guys we suspected were gay seemed to be pretty confused about their sexuality. The military is, frankly, a terrible environment for self discovery of such a nature.

As is all too often the case, I don't think the career gay guys, mostly officers, are seeing it from the enlisted man's point of view and how it might affect them.

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