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  • Don't Ask Don't Tell

    I consider myself pretty open minded. I had a lot of friends who were homosexuals in High School. I still talk to most of them.

    For a while I've been seeing Democrats coming out feeling "betrayed" because President Obama supposedly "promised" to get rid of the Don't Ask Don't Tell policy. Even during the election I shrugged it off as "It will never happen..."

    Well, it appears its going to... never happen. Don't Ask Don't Tell is here to stay, so it seems. While I've been in (Almost a year now) I've met quite a few people I suspect may be hiding their homosexuality. A lot of women, it seems. But it doesn't seem to affect their jobs. It doesn't seem to get in the way of anything...

    But it all boils down to the male side of training. Most girls I've talked to seem to be fine with lesbians in the military, but there's a lot of stigma of gay men being in the military. It's not that military men would not trust them - most of them would (Most men and women in the military are pretty conservative but most are very tolerant people) - it all just boils down to training environments.

    Basic Training. Open showers. Naked men - all the time. Close living situations...

    So, to clarify my opinion... Being gay would not impact their job performance, only training and quarters...

    Honestly, I think the policy works just fine the way it is. I know there are homosexuals in the military and I don't really care. If they were conscious of it when they joined, then they know they need to act a certain way and keep their private lives separate. That's fine by me. The fact is when I go to work people's private lives are just that - private. So I think the current system works pretty well. Unfortunately on occasion a fine individual is outted from the military because it is found that they are gay. Luckily this doesn't seem to happen that much. The only conflict I have is openly gay men or women serving in the military side by side in basic training with straight men and women.

    I was actually accused of being gay by a biggot Marine Sgt in my class during weather school. What started as a joke in class ended up getting rather serious when other NCO's heard the joke. With the doors shut I told him that if he did not cease what he was doing I would be forced to take it higher. He said he'd stop, but not at the cost of constant threats. (He was actually a section 8 crazy - he was removed from the course for having homicidal thoughts about his family, classmates, and others...) The joke that started it all? I was living in tech school dorms for 8 months. The only way to not live in the dorms was to get married. I jokingly said "pulling a chuck and larry would get me out of the dorms, right?"

    That's what started it. That's what almost started a freakin' investigation. Yes, the Marine Sgt was toys in the attic crazy - but that's all it almost took. The accusation by a bigot. So it's pretty serious stuff...

    I know some of you are former military and most of you are left/right winged nuts - but don't be calling each other bigots without reason. This is not a thread for moral arguments about homosexuality, just repercussions if homosexuals served openly in the military.
    Last edited by Skud; 09-18-2009, 07:34 PM.
    Skud



  • #2
    Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

    An interesting question. If one could serve alongside a potential sexual partner or shower with people who might be sexually attracted to each other, is there any reason not to get rid of the segregation of women? Why not just dump everyone together as portrayed in Starship Troopers or the TV series Dollhouse?
    Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

    snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

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    • #3
      Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

      Originally posted by TheSkudDestroyer View Post
      Basic Training. Open showers. Naked men - all the time. Close living situations...

      So, to clarify my opinion... Being gay would not impact their job performance, only training and quarters...
      My father is a firefighter in Florida.

      Showers, Naked men, and close living situations are common between Fire Dept and the Military; Training is somewhat similar, although of course for a different purpose.


      One of the men recently came out. Before this point, he was one of the guys, and always did his job with the same efficiency of any of the others. As soon as he came out, all of the firefighters (excluding my father) began becoming bothered by the fact that he showered naked with them, etc etc.

      My father I think gave them the best, most hilarious, response to that. "Why would you think he's interested in you, anyway?"




      Certainly, there are those who are a bit more feminine or whatnot, and would not be cut out for the training, just like any other non-fit male might. Might be good use with the women of the military, doing any job that didn't involve combat.

      However, those that are physically fit, and are just another one of many men who are fit for their job are probably just as capable as any other, and probably don't have much interest in the other men there.

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      • #4
        Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

        No matter where you go, you'll always have bigots. There are always people who hate without justified reason and have suspicions.

        I have a cousin (female) who joined the Navy, and she experimented while in college. She kept it hush hush from her family and the military, but she didn't say a word about it to the family until she was out of the military. The Navy still doesn't know. She says that the only thing that would change was the way people treated you and it wasn't necessarily worse, especially since the person in question would be in a metal tub 500 other people in close quarters. There isn't any gay (or straight for that matter) relationships going in the ship since everyone would know about it instantly due to lack of privacy.

        Men seem to be the most paranoid, mainly since they're afraid that the man he's sharing a bunk with might try to make advances towards them. It's all about the way someones raised.
        |TG-6th|SirNerd

        My Resume includes Pirate, Mercenary, and a Devil Dog, what else do you want.

        Pain is Inevitable, Suffering is Optional.

        When you can't run anymore, you crawl and when you can't do that, you find someone to carry you.

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        • #5
          Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

          Originally posted by ScratchMonkey View Post
          An interesting question. If one could serve alongside a potential sexual partner or shower with people who might be sexually attracted to each other, is there any reason not to get rid of the segregation of women? Why not just dump everyone together as portrayed in Starship Troopers or the TV series Dollhouse?
          I've thought very same thing myself. If they allow people to be openly gay, then they might as well not segregate anything anymore (including showers).

          I think the current policy is just fine. It seems to work well. I've served with people who I could almost positively tell were gay/lesbian. Because of the current policy, it forced them to remain professional with their love lives separate. If two lesbians want to live together, then heck, they get double the housing allowance. As long as they keep those things private, they can pretty much do what they want. I would not like it at all if they got rid of "Don't Ask. Don't Tell," as you said solely for the training/quarters purposes. I have no problem with them serving. In fact, some of those very people have been some of the most outstanding members of the military I ever had the pleasure to serve with. I just don't need to know about their orientations. Just as I never talked about my relationships either.
          "Common sense is not so common." -Voltaire

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          • #6
            Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

            Dude/Dudette/Gay Person wants to sign up to serve his/her country, we should applaud that. Everything else is secondary. There really shouldn't be ANY personal data impacting that situation. That includes marriage.
            Do or do not, there is no try....
            -- Yoda, Dagobah

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            • #7
              Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

              [We're not talking about Gay Marriage. At all. Just making it clear.]

              Originally posted by Celestial1 View Post
              My father is a firefighter in Florida.

              Showers, Naked men, and close living situations are common between Fire Dept and the Military; Training is somewhat similar, although of course for a different purpose.


              One of the men recently came out. Before this point, he was one of the guys, and always did his job with the same efficiency of any of the others. As soon as he came out, all of the firefighters (excluding my father) began becoming bothered by the fact that he showered naked with them, etc etc.

              My father I think gave them the best, most hilarious, response to that. "Why would you think he's interested in you, anyway?"
              Your father is a wise man.

              I guess it's just hard for the guys to accept the sense of "being lied to." Sure, the guy was not "lying" but guys who depend on one another (ala firefighter) really get to know each other. To suddenly find out that your buddy is gay is hard to accept in that kind of situation. While their reactions may be harsh, they're human nature...

              That would be like my wingman from basic telling me he's gay while we were suiting up for graduation. Would have been a bit of anger. Not because he's gay - because I didn't know earlier.

              But would I want to know that he's gay? Probably not. Our relationship was doing everything from sunrise to sunset with one another. From reville to taps. We would sit in our underwear rolling socks with flashlights after lights out. We would read the bible aloud while we took group poops. We would do just about anything to keep one another from getting chewed out.

              (Takes a moment to reflect)

              So why come out and say that he's gay?

              Some things are just better left unsaid. That's my take...
              Skud


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              • #8
                Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

                I agree with Skud. As for quarters, I've had a gay roomate before I got married. Decent guy, kept to himself, kept clean, was tasteful. I've never had an issue with anyone who didn't make the flaunting of their individual sexuality the main mission of thier life.

                In a perfect military, (yeah, right) soldiers rooming in billets have the right to object to a roommate bringing a guest. It's in every barracks SOP I've ever read on long, lonely CQ rotations. Lets imagine DADT is repealed. If Joe is bunked with John, who is gay, Joe has every right to deny John's partner from coming over and spending the night, and vice versa.
                I know plenty of nights when I've told roommates "Not tonight, man, I need to crash early". And plenty of nights where I've slept at a girlfriend's place off post to respect my roomies' wishes.

                Sadly, you can't expect everyone to have mutual basic respect for another's right to choices that affect only themselves. On both sides of the DADT spectrum you will have urinalstomping, hateful bigots who don't belong in the army, just as much as you will have annoying, irritating, rude and "You have to approve of my life choices, not just tolerate them!" gays and lesbians.

                Repealing DADT is a slippery slope, and I don't think anyone in power right now has the balls/ovaries tomake sure it mantains the respect, maturity, and dignity of all involved.


                PS..

                If the man or woman I'm standing back to back with can shoot and kill with their rifle, call in an airstrike, provide buddy aid or drag me to cover, I don't give a flying fart about their personal life.
                The American Resistance Movement: Defending the nation from tyranny since 1776.

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                • #9
                  Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

                  What would happen if there's this person in an all female squad who essentially looks and acts JUST like a woman... then, one day while in the showers this person pops out and says "uhhh.. I'm sorry, I'm actually a guy and attracted to all of you."

                  What in the hell do you think would happen? Those women would probably kick the man in the "nuts" and have him jailed for the rest of his life. All the while running and screaming out of the bathroom. Yet it's these same women who harp on guys who dont feel comfortable when there's an efeminant man in close quarters.

                  Moral of the story: get rid of the male/female double-standard and the issue of homosexuality will automatically solve itself.

                  America is now a pretty feminist society, yet it's still "have your cake and eat it too" as far as women go. Only when feminism goes away and everyone is on completely even playing fields will things start to make sense.

                  At that point we can all shower together and it wont mean anything. But, good luck tearing the "have your cake and eat it too" policy from American women.... aint gonna happen.

                  And therein lies the true obstacle to gay rights imo. Sounds odd, but it's true. And I cant say I dont blame them. It's just smart. Why not have completely equal rights with an extra bit of priveledge. If gays become totally transparent in society, then all that goes away... lotta women dont want that - 'specially the conservative kind.

                  p.s.
                  innately, most women dont want their men getting cozy with other men (if they're gay). that's just a competitive fact. And what in the hell do you think would happen to married soldiers who have women in their squads?? doesnt take a rocket scientist to figure out. The women at home wont be too happy. Until everything/everyone is brutally open, honest, and sexually comfortable (and marriage, manogamy, and all that gooey stuff goes away) you will continue to have the status quo and gays will never be equal.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

                    Originally posted by TheSkudDestroyer View Post
                    I guess it's just hard for the guys to accept the sense of "being lied to." Sure, the guy was not "lying" but guys who depend on one another (ala firefighter) really get to know each other. To suddenly find out that your buddy is gay is hard to accept in that kind of situation. While their reactions may be harsh, they're human nature...
                    It can snowball from there; first, you find out he's gay, and it's a surprise to you. If it doesn't bother you in the slightest, you kind of stop there and say "well, okay, that's great for you, man".

                    But, you might start thinking, and your hormones start pushing rampantly in favor your masculinity being at stake, and might even begin to shun the man subconciously, or even conciously, depending on how much it is a bother to you.

                    How you handle all these is the biggest thing. If you shun the man, shame on you; he has done you nothing wrong. If you're suprised, even a little put off by the situation, that's only natural.

                    So why come out and say that he's gay?

                    Some things are just better left unsaid. That's my take...
                    Well, my belief is that this can be explained by Humanistic Psychology, and in specific, the pyramid of self-actualization needs. Self-Actualization is feeling purpose in life, and realising all of your potential. To reach this, a few needs must be met:

                    First, Physiological needs (food, water, sleep).
                    Then, Security; feeling safe within your community; being able to trust those around you for protection.
                    Love and Belongingness comes next; friendship, appreciation, giving and recieving love.
                    Esteem is the last component; The need to be unique, to be respected.

                    These all must be met (but can be done in any order, excluding the fact that physiological needs must be met first, always) to achieve self-actualization.



                    In this case, perhaps his group (Firefighters, Soldiers, you name it) is Security; he feels safe, and at ease with them, and then slowly begins gaining friendship from his fellow men. Then, at this point, he wants to belong in the group, and this fuels his want to be friendly with the other men, to gain their trust.

                    All of this is done, I think, to help meet their esteem needs; to be true to themselves and others, to be known for what they are, being unique, and still be respected.



                    I think this is why they feel the need to come out to their fellow workers/soldiers, to help feel fufilled in life, by knowing that they are respected even if they do something that others do not.


                    Edit, response to Gambit:
                    Originally posted by Gambit7 View Post
                    What would happen if there's this person in an all female squad who essentially looks and acts JUST like a woman... then, one day while in the showers this person pops out and says "uhhh.. I'm sorry, I'm actually a guy and attracted to all of you."

                    What in the hell do you think would happen? Those women would probably kick the man in the "nuts" and have him jailed for the rest of his life. All the while running and screaming out of the bathroom. Yet it's these same women who harp on guys who dont feel comfortable when there's an efeminant man in close quarters.

                    Moral of the story: get rid of the male/female double-standard and the issue of homosexuality will automatically solve itself.
                    I don't believe so; I think this is because the double-standard is caused by differing views between men and women.

                    A heterosexual man who acted as a heterosexual woman in the case depicted above would likely be shunned from the women's group.
                    A heterosexual woman who acted as a heterosexual man in this situation would likely be either shunned, accepted entirely, and the rest will be knocked off their chairs with a cloud of uncertainty.

                    A man who acted as a heterosexual, but was indeed not, is likely to be shunned from the group.
                    A woman who acted as heterosexual, but was indeed not, is likely to be shunned, accepted entirely, or again uncertainty will befuddle the others.

                    There's no easy way, I think, to really just push this issue away. There's not an easy way to 'generalize' this situation past what I have described above.

                    Gender has a lot of effects on the mind; Women often accept other women in their personal groups even if they aren't of the same sexuality. Men are less likely to accept other men in their personal groups if they aren't of the same sexuality.

                    It's part of human nature to feel this way as humans are naturally competitive, and I think that it is unfortunately here to stay for some time until homosexuality really becomes part of 'the mainstream' and begins to be accepted more easily.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

                      I've never understood why some straight people think being gay means you cant keep your hands to yourself.

                      In any event, Obama "promising" he would let gays in the military is just more proof American people are getting dumber and dumber.

                      Sodomy is a crime according to the uniform code of justice. The only body who can change that is congress generally, and the Armed services comittee specifically as they would have to pass the change before the entire house/senate could even vote on it. For those of you who are not aware, that committee is one of the more conservative bodies in the house/senate, no matter which party is in power and holds a majority of the seats.

                      Therefore, it stands to reason he has actually the least amount of say in the gov't about gays serving openly in the military even though he is the CINC since he only enforces the code, and doesn't write it. Therefore Obama coming out during the campaign in support of this is pure politics, taking someone's money, saying what they want to hear, knowing full and well you cant back up what you are saying so you cash their check quickly and smile all the way to the bank.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

                        Originally posted by TheSkudDestroyer View Post
                        So why come out and say that he's gay?

                        Some things are just better left unsaid. That's my take...
                        While I understand what you're saying, being gay is a pretty integral part of someone's personality. You said you'd read the Bible with your friend from Basic. How would you feel if you were forced to never speak openly of your religion and would be removed from service if you mentioned it? They lie because they're forced to lie by DADT. If you got rid of DADT, the anger over being lied to wouldn't be there, because they wouldn't have to lie. (Okay, religion might not be the best example because its a choice, but I hope the point is made. They shouldn't have to lie, and if they didn't have to by DADT, you wouldn't be angry when they'd come out later.)

                        Repealing DADT is a slippery slope, and I don't think anyone in power right now has the balls/ovaries tomake sure it mantains the respect, maturity, and dignity of all involved.
                        A slippery slope to what?
                        I can ADS using more than a 2x without significant stutter! This was a good patch.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

                          I can't speak of administrative/support MOSs, as I wasn't part of that world, but I think a gay man would feel uncomfortably out-of-place in a combat unit, though. Running over the activities and conversations and such there wouldn't be a place for homosexual men to fit in and form a tight bond with their fellow grunts. Off-duty, they're going to go do their thing, and the heterosexuals will go and do their thing. You wouldn't have heterosexual soldiers accompanying their homosexual buddies into a gay bar for drinks. And I'm not sure where a homosexual man is going to interject into one of the frequent conversations between heterosexual men about our sexual conquests.

                          As for the close-living aspect that proponents of repealing DADT have probably not experienced, without being crude I'll say that I don't have much to worry about when stripping naked in the showers in those situations where all men must shower together with little privacy (for example, the showers at NTC are large rooms with zero privacy and zero dividers between the showerheads themselves). Even though hang-ups about my physical properties, so to speak, I still felt uncomfortable stripping naked and showering in a room full of other naked men. Add in openly gay men, and that's another layer of complexity on the situation.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

                            If it ain't broke...
                            Skud


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                            • #15
                              Re: Don't Ask Don't Tell

                              Originally posted by Morganan View Post
                              I've never understood why some straight people think being gay means you cant keep your hands to yourself.
                              That's nothing unique to gay men -- there's an awful lot of straight men who can't keep their hands to themselves. The only thing that changes with gay men is now YOU are the person they may be considering putting hands on, which disturbs a lot of people.

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