DoD; Keeping The Military Safe Against Gay

I remember my time as a shipboard sailor very well as one’s tenure in the US Navy is not easily forgot, and perhaps the one aspect of my military life that haunts my memories more than any other is the fact that I had to serve with gay shipmates.

To this day I shudder when I think of the hardships I had to go through knowing that I was working side by side with guys that liked other guys. For one, I could not stop them from harrassing me; grabbing my ass, sticking their tongue in my ear, and coercing me into having nonconsentual gay sex. I will never forget or forgive being forced to have gay sex.

What was worse than this, though, was the living with the perpetual fear that one day their gayness would rub off on me. I dreaded the day that I might wake up, and no longer find the stacks of magazines filled with naked women stashed in my locker appealing-the day I started to involuntarily meat gaze whilst taking a shower.

Only by the grace of God was I able to avoid such a cruel fate…

Okay, now for the truth. I have served with a number of homosexual and bisexual shipmates while I was still in the Navy, and believe it or not, not only am I still straight, so are the rest of my straight shipmates. Miraculously, we were able to avoid catching gayness.

Even more miraculous, our homosexual shipmates did their jobs, did them well, and conducted themselves in an entirely professional and laudable manner. In fact, I have found that those members of our crew that were gay tended to actually be MORE professional than the straight ones. From my observations, those members that actually turned out to be gay qualified their watchstations ahead of time (no small accomplishment in and of itself in the Nuclear Propulsion field), conducted themselves in an exemplary military manner, and were far less likely to partake in the sophomoric pranks and games than their straight counterparts.

I’ve known a couple of them to go on and receive commissions as United States Naval Officers, and continue to this day to serve their country with nothing but honor. I’ve also known one shipmate to be discharged for being gay, though how this was ever found out I still don’t know as this particular Electrician’s Mate First Class had always made it a point to leave his sexual orientation completely out of the work place; we’re talking by a margin of zipcodes here, something rather extraordinary when you think about the fact that this means he is concealing his nature for six months at a time.

Now, I fully realize that the department of the Navy that I served in may be a couple of shades different than the rest of the Navy, but that does not change the fact that I have to this day seen no negative effects of homosexual persons serving in the military. That is, of course, if you discount the Department of Defense’s policies towards such service members and the harm such policies actually inflict on the service.

And it is quite possible that there is nothing that highlights this more than the fact that the Department of Defense has fired 58 gay Arabic translators solely because… wait for it… they were gay!

Me personally, I applaud this effort. I mean, so what if we are weakening our own abilities to discover and stop another 911, as long as we are protecting our military members from the heinous evil of gay, well, that’s alright in my book.

In truth, all this story does is further display the utter regressive nature of the military’s policies towards homosexuals, why the crusade against gays in the military is hurting our armed forces and the security of our homeland.

What is more baffling is the attitude adopted by top brass officials both past and present towards a military with varying sexual orientations, and not just because of the blatant bigotry of it, but also because of how out of touch it is with troops on the ground and boots on the deckplates. While old farts with stars on their shoulders, guys like, oh, retired general Colin Powell, will posit that gay people are bad for the military, what they don’t seem to see is that the petty officers and privates serving under them have already learned to cope, often times know that their comrades in arms are gay, and accept this fact and are not bothered by it.

This tendancy, I believe, is one that is likely to continue to progress in the pro-gay direction too as the passage of time seems to trend into a general overall increase of acceptance of the gay community. Despite efforts of the socially ultra conservative right to implant into the minds of the public that gay=evil (note: google Fred Phelps and see how long you can hold down the nausea), we have seen progress, albeit slow, in recognizing the validity of homosexuality as a perfectly well adjusted and acceptable lifestyle, and this acceptance, I think is and will continue to spill over to the military.

But even if you couldn’t wrap your head around the idea of gay being bad, it still doesn’t make that much sense for gay people to be banned from openly serving in the military. For one, look at how stretched thin our armed forces are. We’re throwing the baby out with the bathwater, and for the increasing number of people who don’t equate gay with evil, there is no bathwater here, just baby. Plus, you are giving non gay people a means of dodging military service (yes, people still do try to lie and say they are gay to get out of the military).

I mean, if you want to take a hard line on the military, the only reason to openly admit that you are gay today is to get out of the military, and this gambit is not restricted to the homosexual community. By getting rid of this needless ban on gay, you take away an almost unprovable lie for straight people to use to be discharged, and if you have honestly gay people trying to use their sexual orientation to get out, the military can say, hey, you signed up for it, now live with it.

But that’s just me, and I guess that since I would rather have 58 people who can translate Arabic during a time when we are fighting at least two wars in Arab speaking nations as opposed to purging the military of gayness, my opinion probably doesn’t mean much.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Connect with Facebook