The Ultimate Brokeback Forum

Author Topic: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays & the military--ARCHIVED  (Read 101873 times)

Offline jpq716

  • Expert
  • ****
  • Posts: 452
  • "It's nobody's business but ours."
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #60 on: March 20, 2007, 07:00:40 PM »
Dave, I am very sorry if my remarks on gays in the military annoyed you, especially since I have a great deal of respect for you for having created this wonderful forum and for having made it the vibrant cultural oasis that it has become on the Net. But my remarks on the iron triangle of class oppression in Amerika (the military / the intelligence services / domestic law enforcement) stand. And since I know just how sharp you are, I am sure that you can easily deduce how my remarks on this thread are but a small, even derivative, consequence of even more profound views that I have on the nature of contemporary society, above and beyond its physically coercive dimensions. And what can the two of us do at this point? Dance around the points of contention until we are exhausted? No, especially since, if my position be essentially true, we are shortly going to witness revelations that will substantiate it. For the proof of the pudding is ever in the tasting, and in nothing less.

By way of illustration, let us consider the case of Sergeant Eric Alva, which arrives --- by one of those exquisite ironies that appear too frequently in history to be accidental --- right in tandem with the case of ex-Marine Matt Sanchez. That the first military casualty of the Iraqi war should be a gay Marine is one of those facts of life that no novelist would dare to invent, and it is truly a devastating blow to the fundamental hypocrisy of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” charade. Pace’s unrepentant snarl about the fundamental “immorality” of gay sex and its equivalence to heterosexual adultery is his shell-shocked, knee-jerk reaction, not merely to the revelation that “a sinner” could be a hero (Alva), but also that a hero (at least to Ann Coulter and her ilk) could be “a sinner” (Sanchez). (In addition, it is a most unwise equivalence, since if the military ever seriously investigated the incidence of heterosexual adultery within its ranks, God alone knows how much of the military would remain in uniform. But you, Dave, having been a lieutenant in the Army during Silver Age of Reagan, might have better anecdotal information on the subject than I could… :D ).

Alva’s support of the Military Readiness Enhancement  Act is most touching and I respect him for it, but I have my doubts as to whether it will go anywhere legislatively at a time when the Demokrat majority in both Houses of Congress is unable to stop the Amerikan Caligula from “surging” to victory over the dead bodies of every last blessed man, woman and child in Iraq. Your letter to Senator Warner is also touching and I respect you for it, but I have been watching the Virginia fox for quite some time now (even before he temporarily hooked up with Liz Taylor, as a matter of fact) and I wish you good luck with him. I will never forgot the equally “courageous” remarks that he and Lindsay Graham made on the floor of the Senate about the Military Appropriations Act of 2006 last September and then how quickly they capitulated on the very next day and supported the gutting of habeas corpus after almost eight hundred years in Anglo-Amerikan law. This was an exquisitely shameful act, even for the Virginia fox, and I fear that it does not bode well for your appeal for his support.

But all of this is secondary, Dave. The last that I heard, Pace is still the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and he still has not apologized. What does that tell you, Dave? Even Alberto “El Torturador” Gonzalez is getting ready to ride the chute to oblivion, but Pace is still there. What does that tell you, Dave?

And once more, thank you for your visionary creation of this forum. It is a fine thing that you have created, especially since it manages to support viewpoints so deeply antithetical to your own. I don’t trust Warner --- and I fear for Alva --- but I admire you for what you have done, and through this forum, for what you are trying to do for a more genuinely equitable and freer society.
Albert Camus: "In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer."

Offline graylockV

  • Obsessed
  • *****
  • Posts: 1460
  • Klaatu barada nikto
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #61 on: March 20, 2007, 07:10:34 PM »
I am no fan of my senior senator, John Warner, but I give him credit for his comments.  He represents a huge number of military active duty and retired personnel, especially Navy (Newport News) and Marine Corps (Quantico.).  He gets no points for having the guts to go up against General Pace

I also appreciate that he refused to support Ollie North's candidacy when Ollie was the Republican Senate nominee back in 1994.  Remember, this is Pat Robertson/Jerry Falwell land and they wield a lot of power in the Virginia Republican party, which is somewhere on the spectrum to the right of Francisco Franco.

Makes me wonder if John Warner plans to run for re-election in 2008.  He might just take 30 years in office and call it a day.  Word is former-governor Mark Warner is planning to run for that seat. 
Beulah, peel me a grape.

cwby

  • Guest
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #62 on: March 20, 2007, 07:41:20 PM »
 ;D probably been mentioned already. Bill Maher's show on 07/03/16 talks about this issue. Bill brought to light that black men could not serve in the same unit/along side  the "whites" during the WW's.
Eventually your president of that era said enough is enough and amended the policy.
It was summarized that the military is slow to change then and now.
Now you have a repub presidential candidate from Arkansas-Huckabee (and a Baptist Minister to boot) unrepentent about his position on homosexuality/samesex marriage/gays&lesbians serving in the military. Huckabee's response: we would have to think about it- wtf is wrong in america that so few could have so large an influence?

Offline jpq716

  • Expert
  • ****
  • Posts: 452
  • "It's nobody's business but ours."
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #63 on: March 20, 2007, 08:05:46 PM »
Ah, cwby, but Huckabee is now candidate history. Not enough $$$, and truth apparently could not fill the gap...

And the last that I heard, Harry Truman is still dead. The more's the pity.... :(
Albert Camus: "In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer."

Offline graylockV

  • Obsessed
  • *****
  • Posts: 1460
  • Klaatu barada nikto
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #64 on: March 20, 2007, 08:21:15 PM »
wtf is wrong in america that so few could have so large an influence?

Sorry to say, but it's not "so few."  To some extent, we have to wait for generational turnover to really get rid of a lot of silliness, and that takes a long time.  And we have to keep raising hell in the meantime.

Things change slowly but inexorably.  People never mention it, but fifty or more years ago there was a strong stigma against divorced people.  Unless you were the obvious victim - but even then, women were expected to put up with a lot.  "you made your bed...now you have to lie in it."  I am sure my parents - had they been twenty or thirty years younger - would have divorced.  But nice people didn't do that back in their day.  I know it is quaint.  But whether you approve of liberal divorce laws or not - they are here to stay.  And nobody cares that much.  As is also true about illegitimacy.  And interracial marriage, which was not permitted in some states until as late as 1966.  And artificial insemination and invitro fertilization.  I could go on and on.

I mention all this stuff because so many of these "family values" conservatives refuse to recognize that yesterday's immoral depraved person is today's upright citizen.  How many marriages do Giuliani, McCain, Gingrich have amongst themselves?  I believe it's eight, but who's counting?

If Falwell and Robertson and their ilk railed against divorce like they do against homosexuality their pews would be half empty.  But the reason they go after gay people is because it is still very popular to do so. 

Because - for some of these nitwits - if they can't hate queers, who can they hate?
Beulah, peel me a grape.

Offline jpq716

  • Expert
  • ****
  • Posts: 452
  • "It's nobody's business but ours."
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #65 on: March 20, 2007, 10:03:27 PM »
You got that right, greylocke5. Not for nothing has homophobia been defined as "the last acceptable prejudice of the enlightened." And since it is no longer politically correct to send the little woman flying across the kitchen after a hard day at the office or to string up some black folks on a boring Saturday night, maybe gays bear the onus of an unprecedentedly intensive aggression (which, God help us, may be instinctual behavior above and beyond learned behavior). And perhaps gays can protect themselves from this generalized, but homocidal, aggression only by doing more of what women and minorities did: standing, turning, and fighting --- maybe to the death, if necessary...
Albert Camus: "In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer."

bradINblue

  • Guest
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #66 on: March 20, 2007, 10:42:58 PM »
Please pardon my ignorance, but I have never been able to understand why a gay person would have the slightest desire to serve in the military.

It’s not merely because the military is a violently homophobic place, in which gay people run a real high risk of harm, even death, if they do not remain totally in the closet. It’s also because the military, like foreign espionage and domestic law enforcement, is increasingly an instrument of the small global plutocracy

this is stupid. i've been in 'domestic law enforcement' for twenty years. my first few years as a married man. the last 18 years as a homo guy with a partner. for the first ten years, i never experienced/saw a shred of homophobia or racisim for that matter. in fact, my experience in law enforcement has been these are some of the most tolerant people around. i've never heard the word 'nigger' used once by my fellow cops in a disparaging reference to an african american. never heard fag or queer in reference to a gay person. yeah, seen some 'eye'rollin' for one 'over the top' but certainly not hate. cops learn early on, it's not about what you look like, what language you speak, who you sleep with. it's about good people and bad people. those bad people, who break the law and act like idiots get arrested. simple as that.

everyone know's i'm queer at work. i have many co-workers that are, and it's simply isn't an issue. yeah, military is a bit different, but things are changing fast. as for why any gay person would want to be in the military? perhaps it is because they want to defend their country, freedom, and our constitution. just like why so many gays join and so many more gays are cops.

as for the war we're in. that decision was an act of congress, and most so called liberal democrats voted to go. hillary clinton is one. everyone was blindsided by intelligence, most of which was provided by officials appointed by the clinton administration while bush was still tucked away in texis'.

it's time to seperate the stupid right or left politics from this debate/issue. so many more folks would be comfortable. lots i refer to are afraid of the radically left and not crow-bars, and stay in the closet. heck, these radical leftist's are about as intolerant as one can get.

brad

« Last Edit: March 21, 2007, 09:23:37 AM by bradINblue »

Offline Dave Cullen

  • Author/Journalist
  • Administrator
  • Obsessed
  • ******
  • Posts: 7042
  • Founder, Editor
    • Columbine
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #67 on: March 20, 2007, 11:07:02 PM »
Dave, I am very sorry if my remarks on gays in the military annoyed you . . .

You did much more than annoy me. You summarily dismissed and degraded three entire professions, and their membership: military, foreign espionage and domestic law enforcement. I don't know if we have any real-life spies on this forum, but I know we have a sizable number of current and former cops, soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines. And your wholescale dismissal of their careers was offensive to all of them. I have no idea what profession you are in, but consider how you would feel if someone wrote your calling off so cavalierly.

Your remarks were particularly inappropriate in a thread devoted to one of those professions, and especially to a thread devoted to the difficulty gay servicemembers are already encountering. Gay servicemembers are taking flack on one side for being gay, and the other--from people like you--for being servicemembers. Have you considered how much they are already dealing with, and how you are treating them as shabbily as Sen. Pace? Most career soldiers I have known have done it out of a true calling--they feel that is the profession they were born to do. Many identify themselves as a soldier as strongly as they identify themselves as a gay man or woman--often more so. To be degraded for that calling is just as offensive to them as degrading them for being gay.

I have not known a whole lot of cops, but I'm betting the same is true for them.

. . . What does that tell you, Dave? . . . What does that tell you, Dave?

The main thing it suggests to me is that you have a penchant for taking individual examples and extrapolating wildly.

Obviously there are homophobes in the military brass, some at or near the top. The same is true of the U.S. Senate, but I wouldn't use their existence to make a statement like, "I have never been able to understand why a gay person would have the slightest desire to serve in the Senate."

And I think you'll find far more members of the Senate leadership on the record saying far more homophobic things than Pace said. (Starting with our dear departed Sen Santorum, who was #3 in the leadership until January, who infamously compared us to man-on-dog action, and stood by the remarks.)

And I find it perplexing that you would bring up Sergeant Eric Alva to buttress your case. The man has just written a book and gone on tour proclaiming how much he loved his time in the military, and would be there today despite the policy if not for his injury. You seem to be missing the forest for the trees. Instead of asking how any gayguy could possibly want to be in the miliitary, why don't you listen to gayguys telling you why they want to be in the military? The very man you cite is trying to tell you--yet you cite his existence as "illustration" against his position that gays can find satisfaction in the military. Where does the listening come in?
« Last Edit: March 20, 2007, 11:29:26 PM by Dave Cullen »

Offline Dave Cullen

  • Author/Journalist
  • Administrator
  • Obsessed
  • ******
  • Posts: 7042
  • Founder, Editor
    • Columbine
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #68 on: March 20, 2007, 11:11:28 PM »
I am no fan of my senior senator, John Warner, but I give him credit for his comments. 

same here. i have seen plenty of things i have liked about him, and plenty i have not--some of each cited in this thread. but i have no interest in assessing his entire career, only in congratulating him on this specific move.

when people help us, and they take a lot of flack for helping us, they're going to feel a lot better about that flack if they also hear a lot of thanks. and it helps their colleagues find the balls to support us later, when they hear that the senator got a sizeable chunk of both hate mail and love mail after he made his remarks.

praising people who help us is important.

i'm not suggesting anyone vote for him, or write an op-ed praising his entire career. but i am suggesting we praise him for this move.

Offline jpq716

  • Expert
  • ****
  • Posts: 452
  • "It's nobody's business but ours."
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #69 on: March 21, 2007, 05:35:31 AM »
Dave, I know that there are some good cops out there, and I presume that there are some good soldiers out there. Who knows? perhaps there even may be some good spies out there. But what you are demanding of me is that I grant that law enforcement, the military and both foreign and domestic espionage are basically decent and honorable professions. Maybe once they were and maybe someday they may be again, but in the Age of the Amerikan Caligula, they are not and cannot be. They are, in point of fact, instruments of oppression of the people and even subversion of the Constitution. And such being the case, I cannot understand why any upstanding gay person would want to have anything to do with any of them as long as the current state of affairs continues.

This is my last word on this matter in this thread, Dave. After all, I respect you highly for the work that you have done in this forum, and you are the last person within it with whom I would like to get into an argument. Peace, brother.
Albert Camus: "In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer."

Offline ImEnnisShesJack

  • Obsessed
  • *****
  • Posts: 4347
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #70 on: March 21, 2007, 05:46:06 AM »
You got that right, greylocke5. Not for nothing has homophobia been defined as "the last acceptable prejudice of the enlightened." And since it is no longer politically correct to send the little woman flying across the kitchen after a hard day at the office or to string up some black folks on a boring Saturday night, maybe gays bear the onus of an unprecedentedly intensive aggression (which, God help us, may be instinctual behavior above and beyond learned behavior). And perhaps gays can protect themselves from this generalized, but homocidal, aggression only by doing more of what women and minorities did: standing, turning, and fighting --- maybe to the death, if necessary...


I don't know,  in Indianapolis, gay-oriented hate crimes and discrimination are illegal, but you can still poke fun at the fat kid.

"And when he shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars,
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night."
~~Heath Ledger 1979-2008~~

Carol8159@yahoo.com

Offline Dave Cullen

  • Author/Journalist
  • Administrator
  • Obsessed
  • ******
  • Posts: 7042
  • Founder, Editor
    • Columbine
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #71 on: March 21, 2007, 08:34:25 AM »
...But what you are demanding of me is that I grant that law enforcement, the military and both foreign and domestic espionage are basically decent and honorable professions.

. . . This is my last word on this matter in this thread, Dave.

I'm glad to hear that last part.

You are free to consider certain professions indecent and dishonorable, but the idea of choosing a thread about the plight of gays in the military as a place to make drive-by attacks on gays in the military as participating in an indecent and dishonorable profession . . . it just kind of staggers my mind.

And frankly, if you're going to attack any entire professions as indecent and dishonorable . . . God, well, don't do it as a drive-by. You better be ready to lay out a full case and explain your rationalle for trashing all the people involved. And I've really got to think about whether we want that here. I'm generally open to intellectual debate, so there's a way to pursue that, but you better approach it as intellectual debate. For example, if you truly feel a compulsion to announce to the forum that writing is an indecent and dishonorable profession and that all of us writers out there have a moral obligation to put down our pens and keyboards, well, I guess you have a right to make that case. But you better start out with a damn good rationalle for why you feel the need to do it, and then make a pretty strong case. And frankly, I don't think this forum would be a good place to host that bloodbath. I don't think it's a good place for the one you have chosen either.

Do not bring question their honor here again. If you feel the need to continue making statements about their honor, do it to me by PM.

I apologize to gay servicemembers trying to be part of this discussion. The purpose of this thread is not to attack you for who you are or the profession you have chosen. Please feel comfortable that more of this kind of behavior will not be tolerated here.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2007, 08:57:20 AM by Dave Cullen »

Offline Nax

  • The Captain Underpants Enigma
  • Tech Support
  • Obsessed
  • *****
  • Posts: 15919
  • A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.
    • naxfun.com
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #72 on: March 21, 2007, 09:28:34 AM »
In all societies there is generally a desire for law and order the alternative is anarchy and instability.  Those who feel they want to be part of that enforcement are to be applauded, it takes a special type of person to be able to deal with these issues. Some of these people will be gay (statistically proven) and different societies will treat that fact differently. 

We cannot cloud the issue of what happens at the governing level of those forces, being gay does not define the rule of law that is being supported and metered out but may be at odds with that law by the fact the person may be gay and that is an issue for them alone.  We should strive for changes through the due process of democracy, one of those issues should be the fundamental rights of the equality of all people gay straight whatever.  Any human life dedicated to the service of others demands some respect from those of us partaking of those services regardless of gender, orientation, ethnic tags or anything else.

mini rant over. 

Equality for all should be the goal of all of us.

Neil.

bradINblue

  • Guest
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #73 on: March 21, 2007, 09:33:36 AM »
Dave, I know that there are some good cops out there, and I presume that there are some good soldiers out there. Who knows? perhaps there even may be some good spies out there. But what you are demanding of me is that I grant that law enforcement, the military and both foreign and domestic espionage are basically decent and honorable professions. Maybe once they were and maybe someday they may be again, but in the Age of the Amerikan Caligula, they are not and cannot be. They are, in point of fact, instruments of oppression of the people and even subversion of the Constitution. And such being the case, I cannot understand why any upstanding gay person would want to have anything to do with any of them as long as the current state of affairs continues.

This is my last word on this matter in this thread, Dave. After all, I respect you highly for the work that you have done in this forum, and you are the last person within it with whom I would like to get into an argument. Peace, brother.


talk about hate and intolerance. nothing peaceful here. This is my last word on this matter in this thread, good.

b

Online fritzkep

  • German Louisiana Virginia Dude
  • Global Moderator
  • Obsessed
  • ******
  • Posts: 112903
  • Wie geht's, y'all?
Re: Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Gays, friends, and the military
« Reply #74 on: March 21, 2007, 04:33:09 PM »
Brad, I honor your service to your city in your chosen profession of law enforcement, and I honor Dave, Jackie and all the rest of the members of the Forum who have served our country in the military. I am proud to have been a soldier, albeit a drafted one way back when. I dream of the day when gay men and women can serve proudly and openly in our military, as they can in many other countries.



Werd ich zum Augenblicke sagen, "Verweile doch! Du bist so schön..."