Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Bet On It

gaysoldierskissing.jpgAs I write this Congressman Martin Meehan (D-MA) is presenting a bill to repeal the infamous “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” legislation. Those of us around at the time may remember that as an object lesson to a newly ascendant Democratic President that even when you control all the levers of power you can’t always get your way. What Clinton did with his efforts to repeal the military’s ban on gays, however, was to show us that it is possible for a new president, with only a plurality of the vote, to try to pass controversial legislation. He failed, but in doing so made believers out of many of us who hadn’t trusted him previously.
A rude surprise came eight years later when W took Clinton’s lesson to heart and shoved his far-right wing tax-cut-and-spend budget through a compliant congress even though he, too, had only a plurality of the vote.
Jake Tapper over at ABC News blogs about the appearance today of Staff Sgt. Eric Alva along side Meehan and a bipartisan group of legislators pushing for repeal of the ban. Alva was the first US Marine seriously wounded in our current adventure in Iraq, and is now openly gay.

For a refresher on this issue, check out Wikiality.

2 thoughts on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Bet On It

  1. dekerivers

    One of my readers commented recently that gay rights are ’special rights’, and since Alva is a gay member of the United States military I am wondering if my reader feels that this patriotic American has any reason to want justice. Alva is bravely fighting to end the bigoted notion of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ that has cost the U.S. taxpayers millions of dollars, and ended the military careers of many citizens. While Alva was ready to give his life for his country my reader sits in America hoping to deny ’special rights’ to patriotic citizens. One really has to wonder what goes on in the heads of bigoted conservatives.

  2. Lulu

    We’ve lost linguists who could have helped us in Iraq and who knows how many others who were willing to serve.

    Gay military relationships can be found all the way back to ancient Greece.

    Only our prissy little nation could undercut itself in this way.

    Another step in our national decline. We just can’t read/

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