Common Sense On Gays In The Militaryby Doug Mataconis
Alan Simpson, a former Senator from Wyoming who once was a strong advocate of the military’s Don’t Ask-Don’t Tell policy, has a great column in today’s Washington Post explaining why he’s changed his mind.
There is alot to like about the column, but here’s the money quote:
Since 1993, I have had the rich satisfaction of knowing and working with many openly gay and lesbian Americans, and I have come to realize that “gay” is an artificial category when it comes to measuring a man or woman’s on-the-job performance or commitment to shared goals. It says little about the person. Our differences and prejudices pale next to our historic challenge. Gen. Pace is entitled, like anyone, to his personal opinion, even if it is completely out of the mainstream of American thinking. But he should know better than to assert this opinion as the basis for policy of a military that represents and serves an entire nation. Let us end “don’t ask, don’t tell.” This policy has become a serious detriment to the readiness of America’s forces as they attempt to accomplish what is arguably the most challenging mission in our long and cherished history.
Good for you Senator. Except I’d disagree on one thing. General Pace is entitled to his own personal opinion about homosexuals, but he serves at the pleasure of the President and as he has already admitted, it was entirely inappropriate for him to voice his personal views on this issue while speaking as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
The ban on homosexuals, or at least open homosexuals, in the military is as out-dated as segration was when Harry Truman ended that stupid policy in the 1950s. It’s time for it to come to an end.