The repeal of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy is a huge mistake that will distract our combat units. Many arguments conclude that numerous foreign governments have effectively integrated homosexuals into the military. The fallacy to the argument is: What nation, foreign entity, regime, power or coalition has the military capabilities of the United States? There is no nation in the world that has the overall discipline and tact of the U.S.

The repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell” will lessen the effectiveness of our uniformed forces. It is a distraction to our forces that could potentially cost the lives of military personnel. I am fervently against the integration of homosexuals in our military. The policy of “don’t ask, don’t tell” was a just policy that ensured the equal treatment of those serving. We as a nation have compromised the moral and ethical fundamentals that our nation is founded on.

As a U.S. Marine and having served in Afghanistan, I realize the consequences of this decision. This decision will affect our troops negatively. The vote will create a third gender for the military. Our military invests in separate living quarters, restrooms and provisions that are gender-based. The majority of combat troops will not be able to adapt to a homosexual comrade living, showering and cohabitating among them. For example, infantry units do not allow females on “the front lines” because of the evident circumstances.

By creating a third gender among military personnel, homosexuals will endanger their lives and those around them. The logic fallacy of the progressive agenda will snowball itself until our nation is morally corrupt, ethically exhausted, and physically broke.

Cpl. Joel Lawton

Carnesville, Ga.

No gay GIs in combat

Since the decision to repeal the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy was inevitable, the military must now figure out a way to implement the inclusion of openly gay members. If anyone was following the results of the poll that was concluded this summer by the Department of Defense it shouldn’t be hard to decide. Since approximately 70 percent of the noncombat troops say their morale would not be affected vs. just over 50 percent of the combat troops who say that it would hurt their effectiveness, the military leadership should treat the openly gay servicemembers like they do women currently. They should only serve in a noncombat role. That way we wouldn’t lose so many of the fighting soldiers who would be distrustful of a platoon member who is gay.

Before too many of you jump down my throat, you should remember that the military has always had discriminatory rights of who should serve in its ranks. Flat feet used to keep people out. You still can’t serve if you are too fat.

This placing of gays in only support roles will still allow them to serve honorably, just like women have since their inclusion, and will allow those uncomfortable with that lifestyle to also still serve without a day-to-day conflict with their feelings.

Neither side of this issue will probably be happy with this suggestion, which is what compromise is all about.

Sgt. 1st Class Jared Beck

Camp Murray, Wash.

Morality isn’t the central issue

Regarding the Dec. 17 letter “Can’t act based on 6 percent”: I absolutely agree that if gays are allowed to openly serve in the military, they should be kept in their own barracks, with their own bathrooms, separated from everyone else. In fact, we’ll call them camps or ghettos so it sounds hip and doesn’t end with an “ism.” Maybe we could even give them something they could wear so they would stand out, like a star or something.

Most people are lost in the fact that the “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal has nothing to do with the belief that homosexuality is immoral. It has nothing to do with thinking gay marriage would “ruin the sanctity of marriage.” As far as I am concerned, the rampant infidelity within the military is the immorality people should concern themselves with — not to mention that the soaring divorce rate ruined the sanctity of marriage long ago.

There are already gays serving in the military. They were your bunkmate in basic, your roommate in Iraq or Afghanistan, and they saved your life on more than one occasion. Ignorance was bliss, now accept the truth.

I find the Pentagon’s survey on military policy laughable. When did we start taking votes? The military needs a survey on “don’t ask, don’t tell” as much as I need my soldiers to vote on who is taking out the trash. There are so many issues out there: poverty, hunger, AIDS, drugs, you name it, and we’ve literally chosen the one issue in the entire world that actually prevents people from being happy and/or equal.

Nobody cares about [one person’s] opinion on morality. That isn’t the question. It should have never even been a question. The repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell” won’t change anything, to include the inability of some to accept change.

Capt. William Kilgore

Kandahar, Afghanistan

No bigoted policy should stand

I have been reading the letters to the editor as concerns “don’t ask, don’t tell” I want to address two points.

Our fears about sharing close space with someone of a different sexual preference drip with irony. We do not want someone with whom we share showers, quarters and fighting positions to look at us as potential partners in an act in which we have no desire to take part. How quickly we forget what many women endured, and often continue to endure, on the path from being auxiliary forces to full integration into the military. Perhaps our discomfort in this case will help us remember their discomfort at the thought of being considered (unwilling!) sexual objects.

The letters [of recent weeks] concerning the religious values do not yet include a letter from a chaplain. Please note: No one is calling for the dining facilities to cease serving pork (Deuteronomy 14). We do not punish adulterers by stoning (Leviticus 20). Our exchanges and commissaries open on Sunday mornings well before church services conclude (Exodus 20). If the entire Bible is holy, we should not hold up certain commandments as a basis for policy while ignoring other commandments out of convenience. We should also remember that those commandments exist in a greater context than our ability to cite chapter and verse.

Not that it matters. We do not undertake to protect the Bible. Our oaths are clear in that we promise to “support and defend the Constitution.” As with all policies, Congress legislates. The courts determine legal implications. The president directs. As members of the military, we are instruments of that legal process, and not interpreters of the constitutional basis. It goes beyond the scope of our oaths to demand that the Constitution withstand the scrutiny of biblical correctness.

This is not about religion or sexual preference. This is about discipline and effective command. To allow a bigoted policy to stand because we cannot control ourselves or because our commanders cannot control their units is a lazy, unmilitary solution to what should be a simple issue.

Rabbi (Lt. Cmdr.) Sean Gorman


Sixty-five thank yous

To the 65 members of the U.S. Senate who voted in favor of the repeal of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy: Thank you.

Sgt. Natassia L. Tyler

Forward Operating Base Lagman, Afghanistan

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