This essay sets out to explore the reasons that support the repeal of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, which allowed for lesbians, gays and bisexuals to enter and serve openly in US Armed Forces. The paper will look at reasons, which include; lack of interference on military service, as a means of eliminating discrimination. There is also strengthening military readiness, saving tax payers money, as an honor to troops, as a means of stopping the double-standard, stand up for women, join our allies, repeal the hypocrisy, as well as means of listening to the evidence and doing what is right. There has been a hot debate on the rights of gay men and women, and agreement to have them openly serve their country in military appears as a right discharged.
There different people serving in the military, their orientations vary in terms of family background, religion, beliefs, social life as well as sexual orientations. These individuals are lawfully eligible to get accessed to equal opportunities in the country such as being part of the military. Initially people serving in the military who were gays and lesbians received protection with the military officials deter from asking one’s sexual orientation through a policy dubbed “don’t ask don’t tell.” The policy required that gays and lesbians serving in the military should envelop the orientation and have it as their own secret. Open gay men and women received fewer acceptances to render their service in the military and this denied them the excellent opportunity of serving their nation. On the other hand, those military men and women who were open about their orientation faced expulsion and punishment. Therefore, gay, bisexuals and lesbians should be allowed to render their service in the military openly.
The first reason why gay men and women should openly serve in the military is that gay men and women behavior is a personal issue, and it have limited interference on the discipline and good order of the military. Personal relationships should not be an issue to consider in the service, as long as the commanders get the assurance that the behavior will not interfere with the order and discipline of the military. The most prominent aspect in the military is to have a military force that remains finest. The move will not affect the relationship between military men since they have had peaceful coexistence together as evident from those in the military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, but with their sexual orientations concealed.
Secondly, the move to amend title 10, of the DADT policy was a move that focus on eliminating discrimination among members who should be recruited in the military. This helped to boost the readiness of the military, as well as their right. Gay men and women will have equal rights and opportunities in the society. It is painful because those in the military initially had to hide their sexual orientations in the fear that they could face severe punishments, as well as expulsion. The repeal of the ‘DADT’ policy will eliminate firing of any individual from the military based on opinions that they are bisexual, gay or lesbian.
The third reason is that allowing gay men and women to render their services openly in military will serve as a tool of strengthening military readiness. The presence of the ‘don’t ask don’t tell’ policy saw a discharge of approximately eleven thousand servicemen and women. This came at a time when the military service men and women encountered straining operations, and the discharge lot comprise of individuals with specialized skills and Arabic linguists which the military is facing a critical shortage. The services of those discharged cannot be replaced immediately placing the military in a compromising situation.
Fourth, repeal of the “don’t ask don’t tell” policy will save the tax payer money. This is evident through the fact that, during the period 1994 and 2003, Pentagon spent over $ 360 million as indicated by a report submitted by Blue Ribbon Commission. The money was washed-out on carrying out investigations on military command alleged to be gay men and women, while other money spent on the implementation of the policy as well as on other issues that were related to the policy. Taxpayers will not have to contribute their money towards such policy, which seems discriminatory in nature.
Fifth, the other reason why gay men and women should serve openly is that it serves as an honor of our troops. The number of gay, lesbians and bisexual Americans who are currently serving in the US Armed Forces is over 65,000. The recognition of their service through repeal of the policy will serve as an honor by the Pentagon. This also means that the other gays who are approximately one million will now be treated, not as second-class American citizens. There open involvement will make them feel as equal members of the service as other service members. As a result, it will strengthen the critical military relationships. Most of these troops have relentlessly offered their services in the deserts of Afghanistan with a full sense of duty, discipline and patriotism, yet they feel discriminated by the military policy on aspects that form part of their private lives. The move will see an honor of their service rather than their behavior or sexual orientations.
The sixth reason is that gays open service in the military will help stop the double-standard. Initially, the ‘don’t ask don’t tell’ policy required that the military service men and women should not reveal their sexual orientations this meant that they had to hide their true self. These go against the ideals of military such as integrity and honesty. To counter the double standard, the military should openly allow gays, lesbians and bisexual to serve in the military. The move to repeal the policy will eliminate the conflict arise between military ideals and the needs of the policy. The service men and women will not have to struggle to balance between the two standards, since they were supposed to adhere to both standards. It will see an improvement in their discharge of their services due to the absence of conflicting standards.
Seven, the repeal of the policy will serve as an advocacy for women serving in the military. The move to have lesbians serve openly among the military will reduce the discharge levels that have been high among the female personnel. Despite, women comprising of only 15% of U.S. Armed Forces personnel, 35% of them was discharged from service under “don’t ask don’t tell” policy. The move will stand for the women since they will have to serve in the military without any fear of losing their jobs, and even attracting other women who have the same orientations to join the service. As a result, the number of women serving in the military will increase. The move, in addition, will see the right for equality among female and male gender being exercised. Women will not feel being discriminated or their right being violated by military officials.
Eight, repeal of the policy will witness American join its allies such as Britain. By coincidence, military personnel of U.S are in most cases involved in circumstances where they are expected to work side-by- side with foreign militaries and other national security agencies. Most of these security agencies and military personnel do not discriminate their service team based on sexual orientations. This normally creates difficulties in integrating and working together since the US Armed Forces have certain limits that should not be crossed. To facilitate a smooth and similar service delivery, the gay men and women should be allowed to render their service openly just likes their counterparts from different parts of the world. The military personnel should not feel undermine or restricted during joined operations cause this may result in military isolation, and as a result, hinder service delivery.
Nine, in addition the acceptance of gay men and women, to form openly the military personnel helps in repealing the hypocrisy of U.S. government. Since the terror attack of 9/11 and other trends of conflicts that have been consistent, the government has been less interested with the sexual orientation of an individual when recruiting military personnel due to high demand for personnel required to ensure security of the American people. To stop this hypocrisy, the government should do away altogether with the policy, which restricts recruitment of gays in the military. The service of gay men and women has been witnessed during difficult times, for instance, in Iraq and Afghanistan where they have proved to be able and discipline service men and women.
Finally, allowing gay men and women will not affect the readiness of the military. This is evident by the results of different reports commissioned by the national governments, which have indicated that a liftoff the ban will not in any way affect the readiness of the military. The readiness of the military is a function of patriotism and a sense of duty, and not on one’s sexual orientations. The tests of military service are not based on sexual orientation but on other factors that include a sense of duty, discipline, good order, as well as patriotism. However, personal conduct is a factor that should be incorporated, though to a certain extent because it is a supplementing factor. The findings of different reports should be taken in to account and have gay men and women serve in the military service. This documented evidence should serve as a benchmark for allowing gays, lesbians and bisexual to be part of military personnel. The reports are also complemented by the increasing number of Americans who support the involvement of gays, bisexual and lesbians in the military as indicated by poll results.
The polls indicate that more than three-quarters of the American citizens have a strong believe that lesbians, bisexuals and gays are able and fit to serve well and openly in the military. This is owed to the fact that their abilities are not less than those of individuals who do not engage in such social orientations.
The reasons as to why gay men and women should be engaged in military service are many. The truth is that the rights of these individuals should take precedence coupled with other factors such as sense of duty and patriotism when recruiting military personnel. Discrimination of any kind especially that based on sexual orientations should be something of the past. Every American citizen should get access to equal opportunities and have a chance to exercise patriotism. I think that the involvement of all individuals from different spheres of life in the military will have a positive impact on the way military service is undertaken in the country, and other parts of the world. This is because it will foster equality as well as promoting uniformity in the military.