24 February 2011
The US military has every right to try to determine whether its prospective personnel are afflicted by what the American Psychiatric Association recognizes as the mental disorder of homosexuality, or have any other physical and psychological condition that renders one unfit for duty in some way or another. (I, standing only a little over 5'5" tall, would not meet the minimum-height requirement to join the military police or MP's; would anyone in his right mind consider that to be persecution of short people?) That was the longstanding practice until the Clinton Administration's addressing of the previous non-issue of service by homosexuals in our armed forces resulted in its promulgation of the so-called "don't ask, don't tell" policy. This compromise ought to satisfy anybody who sincerely feels that homophiles ought to be allowed to have an honorable place in the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, or Air Force—after all, servicemen who are, for instance, transvestites, "don't tell" that secret either; the fact that it has failed to pacify the "gay rights" lobby, whose members won't settle for less than an overturn of what they and many others misrepresent as a "gay ban," demonstrates that what they really want is to compel everyone else to at least pretend to agree with them.
Now, the Defense Department, lately described as "politically-correct-on-steroids," has reported that there is a low risk of adverse consequences from repudiation of what has become known by the acronym DADT. I can think of one "risk" that's so high as to be a certainty: the adverse consequence to civil rights. You have, of course, been told by "gay rights" activists that the rights in jeopardy are theirs, but what I have in mind is the natural prerogative of a person not to have to appear undressed in the presence of one who might lust for the other; there is, after all, a reason why male and female enlisted personnel don't share quarters. What does the Pentagon propose to do: create "gay" and lesbian brigades, each with their own barracks, so that soldiers who have the misfortune to be heterosexual don't have to, e.g., shower in the company of acknowledged homosexuals? And what about sailors? Shall we establish separate maritime lodgings for those who are attracted to the same sex, or allocate a certain number of warships to be crewed exclusively by them? There's an opportunity here for some quip about either the pink submarine in the film Operation Petticoat, or the color Plymouth pink, but I'll pass it up.