By ANNE FLAHERTY, Associated Press Writer – Tue Feb 23, 6:26 pm ET
WASHINGTON – "Top Army and Air Force officers said Tuesday they would be reluctant to overturn a 17-year policy that prohibits gays from serving openly in the military without more time to ascertain it won't hurt the services.
"I do have serious concerns about the impact of a repeal of the law on a force that is fully engaged in two wars and has been at war for eight and a half years," Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey told Congress. "We just don't know the impacts on readiness and military effectiveness.""
Well, this is better than I expected. They are using the traditional "impacts on readiness and military effectiveness" but that's to be expected. 'Let the gays out of the footlocker and our combat capabilities will fall apart.' Still, there doesn't seem to be a complete blockade against the idea.
I agree with those who say it should be done gradually, though. This situation, while similar to desegregation and women suffrage, is a little different in that the homophobia is ingrained deeper in the psychie than racism or sexism. One idea might be to make the Don't Ask/Don't Tell non-terminal. Anyone outed can still remain in their position with no negative repercussions. There would be no hiding but also no flaunting. This is just an idea of the top of my head so don't read anything into it. To be perfectly honest, I would not want to be the one that had to come up with the new policy. But then I have been all for gay rights in both the military and civilian worlds for a long time.
We'll have to see how this progresses.