As predicted by me and every other rational person on the planet, the ending of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell had no impact whatsoever; it was a complete non–event. Indeed, ending DADT was as significant as your wearing blue socks rather than black socks today: it was that much of a non–event.
A new study confirms those predictions (my emphasis):
A new study on the impact of repealing the US military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy found no negative impact, despite dire warnings from supporters of the ban on allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly.
The study, which was conducted by the pro-repeal Palm Center and was first reported on by Lila Shapiro of the Huffington Post, found no negative impact on military readiness, unit cohesion, retention and recruitment of servicemembers, and morale. The Palm Center conducted “in depth interviews” with 62 active-duty servicemembers as part of the study, which mirrors recent findings by the Pentagon itself. In May, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, commenting on DADT’s repeal, told reporters: “It’s not impacting on morale. It’s not impacting on unit cohesion. It is not impacting on readiness.“[....]
The science has spoken: ending DADT is impacting nothing.
And with all that summed up, I hope this will be my last post concerning this bigoted, unnecessary, wasteful, and harmful policy. For sure, this time!
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell ended today.
In other words, a non–event happened.
Barack Obama has signed the bill repealing don’t ask, don’t tell into law. As I have made clear here before, this is the correct move.
To close out what I hope will be the last post on this atrocious policy, I have two questions:
First, if we grant for the sake of argument that the wingnuts are and that an LGBT soldier would hinder unit cohesion, wouldn’t revealing this publicly actually harm the troops? If a gay or lesbian soldier will make others drop their weapons in order to run away from the gay soldier faster, wouldn’t this provide a means for hostile nations to hinder the US military? They could do it by either by sending gay soldiers against the Americans, or, (more subtly) infiltrating units with gay “agents”. I hesitate to call this treason, but you get my drift.
Second, wouldn’t DADT be demeaning for soldiers already fighting? I mean, accepting DADT requires believing that soldiers kill many bad guys, risk their lives for their country, crawl through muck and mud to fight the enemy, and at the same time collapse like a house of cards in an earthquake when they have a gay soldier in their unit. Are supporters of DADT fucking serious?
The United States has taken a step to truly joining the 21st century, as its Senate has voted 65–31 to repeal its outdated, ineffective and harmful policy of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. As the House has passed an identical bill, the only thing that has to be done to repeal DADT is President Obama’s signature, which is expected.
As thousands of troops, including badly–needed translators and specialists have been dismissed under this policy, this is the correct decision. Lots of other militaries handle LGBT soldiers just fine, and the US military will be no different.
Lastly, yet again, the sky has refused to fall. Has any wingnut freakout ever actually come true? Any?
In his speech to the Human Rights Campaign, President Obama has promised to “[E]nd ’don’t ask-don’t tell.’” It’s good that he wants to end it. But he has said this before and has not followed through. It’s been enough talk now; it is time to act. If words were money, then everybody would be rich, but since words aren’t money, actions are needed.
As I have covered here before, DADT needs to be repealed because the policy it hinders the US military. As a matter of fact, I’ll make a statement here: if you support dismissing well-qualified and needed LGBT people (like interpreters) just for being an LGBT person, then you don’t support the troops. It’s that simple.