To the dismay of (some) fundamentalists, bigots and hypocrites, the mighty and powerful right-wing faction of the Republican party, and a collective group of traditionalists who fear that things are not they way they have been since the beginning of time (or this country as they imagine it to be, or should be), Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) was repealed effective this morning at 12:01 am. ONN internet boards and chat rooms have been abuzz with postings which range from the absurd to ludicrous, such as, 'what will happen on the battlefield if men decline arm-to-arm blood transfusions once they realize that the donor is a homosexual and probably a carrier of the AIDS virus,' to 'I don't want to see guys swapping spit in the shower,' and, 'what if I get propositioned while we are in the foxhole together?' Statements like these reflect the ignorance, bigotry, and prejudice that created a hostile working environment for closeted homosexuals within our armed forces, a decades-long era where professional, patriotic service-members were subjected to harassment, verbal abuse, physical violence, death, court-martial, and a dishonorable discharge without any means of redress. Quite ironic how others still cling to Old Testament, and cite passages where an angry g/God preaches of a fiery end to those who dare break laws of nature; slavery, the subservience of w/Woman, battle for issues of faith and so forth all seemed perfectly in keeping with the coda, and remain unquestioned.
20 or more other countries around the world have long abolished prohibitions against homosexual troops, and truth be told, their armies have not disintegrated into a free-for-all libidinous bacchanal/back-room orgy/endless f*uck fest. Instead, today, equality and dignity has been upheld for segments of our society once regulated to places of disguise, deception, and shame. With the repeal of DADT, American joins ranks with the more enlightened countries of the world in perpetuating equality and human dignity. As well as honesty and transparency, in acknowledging that to die for one's country necessarily entails living in one's country, a facet of a person's existence previously withheld under the tenets of DADT. Bravo to President Obama, HRC, thousands of advocacy groups, millions of voters and activists, brave service-members, bloggers, and everyone else who helped to make this historic moment a reality for ourselves and future generations. Indeed for millions, coming out of the shadows and into the light makes today almost metaphysical in scope, and certainly a positive marker in mankind's quest for a more balanced and comprehensive understanding of our shared humanity.
Shane (proud American and former service-member)
PS: Soundtrack for today is Sylvester's You Make Me Feel (So Real)