After 'don't ask, don't tell' repeal, problems remain
WASHINGTON — Most coverage so far marking the one-year anniversary of the end of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” law has focused on how smoothly the transition went, and how noncontroversial the change ended up being.
But editors over at the magazine for the military gay rights group OutServe posted a story Tuesday reminding supporters that just because the law is gone, that doesn’t mean all of the problems and prejudices have faded away.
In the piece “Becoming a Target,” Air Force Maj. William Britton writes that he had his personal life scrutinized and promotion jeopardized after a series of interviews where he discussed being gay in the military.
“Those in the workplace whom I previously engaged in conversation all but stopped talking to me,” he wrote. “I came to work, performed my tasks, and then went home. There were days where not one word was spoken to me. Not even a ‘hello’ from my boss.”
Britton said his partner was marginalized by the command, creating a tense and frustrating workplace situation. He moved on from that duty station recently, and wrote he still has “a sense of hope that the military culture can and will change for the better.”.
Editors at the magazine said Britton’s story isn’t the norm post-repeal – they’re posting other, more positive views all week too – but it serves as an important message that not all the gay rights fights ended with last year’s repeal.