The Wright Perspective℠
Social Commentary from the C-Suite to Main Street℠
A Blog by Gary Wright II
Pentagon tells military recruiters to accept gays and lesbians
Tuesday, October 19th, 2010
Today the Department of Defense (DOD) issued new guidelines for military recruiters to begin processing applications from gays and lesbians. Although this is a huge step forward for the equality movement in America, the military policy of Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) has not yet been repealed.
This shift in Pentagon policy comes a week after U.S. District Judge Virginia Phillips ordered the Department of Defense to "immediately suspend and discontinue any investigation, or discharge, separation or other proceeding that may have commenced under the Don't Ask, Don't Tell Act or its implementing regulations."
The Department of Justice is expected to appeal the court ruling, and this case will likely end up before the US Supreme Court. Although gay recruits are now being accepted, they are being reminded that enforcement of the DADT policy may change in the future.
President Obama has consistently promised that the DADT policy will come to an end under his presidency. The repeal of DADT was passed in the US House of Representatives, but the Senate refused to even debate this issue before elections through a Republican-led filibuster. The Senate will be forced to address the issue when they return since it is part of the budget authorization bill for the Department of Defense. A report by a military working group is due on December 1st.
Although I have chosen not to pursue my personal legal challenge against DADT, I am working closely with the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN.org), Servicemembers United (ServicemembersUnited.org), and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC.org) to end this failed military policy of discrimination.
-- Gary Wright II