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02/02/2010

Live: 'Don't ask', you shall receive anyway (12PM EST)

by Jeremy Hooper

When Armed Services Committee, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Michael Mullen testify today before the Senate Armed Services Committee (expected @ around 12PM EST), you will be able to watch it right here:

**SOURCE: Armed Services Committee hearing -- Live Webcast [Senate.gov]

Don't say we never gave you anything.

Seriously, don't say it -- we're pretty sure the military bans gay compliments, too.

**UPDATE: Archived footage from MSNBC:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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Your thoughts

After DADT became law, gay men and women went into the military with the understanding that they could serve, albeit not under ideal circumstances. But they are there, and are admirably serving. Every other service member since DADT has enlisted with full knowledge that there are gay men and women serving alongside them. There may be some who don't like the fact that gay men and women are on active duty with them, but if they joined the military after 1993, then they knew what they were getting into, and still chose to make the commitment.

The only thing that repealing DADT, and allowing Gays and Lesbians to serve openly will do is eliminate the irrational basis for dismissing otherwise qualified service members. They are there, they are serving, and the other service members fully know that are. And, in many cases they know (even if it isn't public knowledge) who the gay personnel they are serving with are.

DADT is antiquated, but it was a foot in the door. It wasn't drafted with a malicious intent, but over time came to be wielded maliciously. There are no real reasons for not repealing it, and there is a compelling state's interest in replacing it with a policy which allows gays and lesbians to serve honestly and with integrity. And, it finally looks like that may be on the horizon.

Posted by: Dick Mills | Feb 2, 2010 1:05:37 PM

Sounded like Gates was trying to kick it down the road a year, so that they could perform some "study" to determine if and/or how to repeal DADT. But it also appeared as if the committee members were prepared to stipulate that the law must be changed by the time that the defense authorization bill goes into effect (which is probably coincidentally in one year).

Posted by: Dick Mills | Feb 2, 2010 1:28:04 PM

I've been hearing that the Pentagon needs a year to study this and an actual vote may not take place in Congress until 2011. If this is true, it's a huge problem! Congress is going to look a lot different in 2011 and the Republicans will likely have the votes to block a repeal. I have an awful feeling that this "study" is a delay tactic to put off the vote until they get a more conservative Congress. We really need to demand that this repeal gets done before November otherwise I'm afraid we are looking at a repeat of what happened in the New Jersey marriage battle.

Posted by: Ken | Feb 2, 2010 9:18:22 PM

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