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Is the 'don't ask, don't tell' survey out of line?

The Pentagon doesn't want to know whether troops are gay or lesbian, but is curious if they ever shared a room or the showers with homosexual colleagues, according to portions of a questionnaire sent this week to 400,000 active duty and reserve troops.

The survey includes about 20 questions on marital status, housing, family perceptions of the military, career intentions and whether the participant hangs out with their unit. The next series of questions asks about a service member's interactions with gay or lesbian colleagues, subordinates or unit leaders.

Should the military even be asking soldiers questions about fellow soldiers' sexuality? Are the questions themselves a violation of privacy? Weigh in below.

By Cameron Smith  |  July 9, 2010; 7:19 PM ET  | Category:  National Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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Why in Hades do 70% of those asked in your poll think that the Survey is OUT OF LINE??? For gawds sake the PURPOSE of the Survey is to determine what 400,000 soldiers WHO ARE GOING TO HAVE OBAMA'S DECISION CRAMMED DOWN THEIR THROATS know and think about FORCING homosexuals on them!


You don't DESERVE a Volunteer Army, Marine Corps, Air Force or Navy.

Posted by: dave19 | July 9, 2010 10:35 PM

Did Truman survey the troops in 1947 before he integrated the military?

Did any President survey the troops before sending them to Vietnam or Iraq?

This survey is profoundly and utterly misguided, if not outright malicious.

Posted by: kcx7 | July 9, 2010 11:24 PM

We didn't have a survey in the early 70's when we integrated the military services. But then, we were asking if the non-black military officers and senior enlisteds could handle the integration. The answer was a pretty solid yes, but with some reservations that actually panned out to be true. The Air Force overcompensated the promotions to blacks because they were blacks. I had one fellow alert pilot announce he had increased his promotion chances to 100% because he was half black and had changed his race from white to black. I reminded him he was still a crummy pilot. This policy even extended all the way up to full General.

Unless the military prepares properly for this transition, we may well end up with a military consisting of unusual south americans waving every flag except ours and just not outnumbering us in twenty years.

Posted by: GordonShumway | July 9, 2010 11:47 PM

A survey isn't necessarily out of place, but it should not be conducted by the Pentagon. What soldier in their right mind would answer questions like this without worrying what consequences may result from their most honest responses? The military is hardly objective about anything and virtually owns the minds of enlisted men and women. Any survey should be conducted by a completely independent entity and results held in strict confidence, apart from the statistical results.

It seems queer that less controversy surrounded the inclusion of women into the ranks.

Posted by: TeddyRoosevelt | July 9, 2010 11:52 PM

How would this go over today: How do you feel about taking a shower with a black person?

Were troops asked this question back in the 40's before the army got racially integrated? What do you think the answer would have been in the great majority of cases back then?

Posted by: AJBF | July 9, 2010 11:55 PM

Soldiers depend on each other in times of stress. Soldiers often are strongly prejudiced against homosexual men, whom they regard as not manly enough to hold up under fire. These prejudices may be wrongheaded, but when you ask men to risk their lives and limbs, you have to respect whatever macho attitudes they have and not insist they depend on someone they feel will fold under stress. This is the reason "don't ask, don't tell" is in effect. If the soldiers on the line prefer this to knowing that gays are serving with them, then the policy should not be changed.

Posted by: loyalsyst | July 10, 2010 12:05 AM

If "the troops" don't like the idea of equal rights, I'd suggest they've completely lost sight of what they're supposed to be defending.

And if we let "the troops" decide what rights the Constitution does and doesn't grant to their fellow Americans, then we've got it exactly backwards.

Posted by: kcx7 | July 10, 2010 12:26 AM


Posted by: dagner49 | July 10, 2010 1:06 AM

What will it take to get to "don't care"? I find this whole thing idiotic and tiresome. I'm not gay, I don't care if other people are, it's just not an issue. I don't understand people who have the fear of queer very well. It's not like it's a communicable disease, or like being around a person who's gay will make you gay.

People who get wound up about this have some serious issues of their own for sure though. Like, a lot of them have issues that make someone being gay look like they're normal & mentally healthy by comparison to the frothing hate & fear mongering displayed whenever the subject comes up.

Posted by: Nymous | July 10, 2010 3:05 AM

This survey definitely dicriminates against gays and is slanted to have such a result. One question in the survey would have been sufficient and that question is "Do you have objection to serving along side all fellow men and women who wish to protect our freedom regardless of race, sex, national origin, or sexual orientation?

Posted by: DCguyme1 | July 10, 2010 5:24 AM

even if they undo the don't ask, don't tell policy...
two military men holding hands and kissing will still get punished under the military penal system...
and any gay higher officer will still go to levenworth if he tries anything funny with a subordinate...
you can't act out in the military...
look what happenned when you make a comment about the whitehouse...
and not for nothing, if you know one of your guys is gay and he is bleeding, how do you know he doesn't have aids...

Posted by: DwightCollins | July 10, 2010 5:40 AM

Look, the generals and admirals who are running the commission realize that they're too old to intuitively understand where their young servicemembers are coming from. DADT is going away, and polls like this help give military leaders the information they need to effectively lead the change.

This isn't about ideology. It's about figuring out how best to execute the orders the military will get.

Posted by: alexanderellermann | July 10, 2010 6:37 AM

The survey votes are done by who chooses to respond. I would have voted no but tales of an evening in DC changed my mind.

Posted by: mydchome | July 10, 2010 6:38 AM

What does sexuality have to do with military service or the workplace while we are at it?

Flauting sexuality at work, whatever ones tastes, is simply out of order in my opinion.

I don't "need" to know about a colleague's tastes in partners, football teams or wine to do my job with him/her. Don't tell is fine with me, on the job, so long as it is enforced for all sides.

I really don't understand this overpowering need some have of telling everyone about their choices and of wanting to do the same as those they choose to be (or were born) different from.

There is something a little schizo about wanting to be different yet wanting to be the same AND to bear no consequences for choices made.

Could we not simply add sexual choices to the list of topics best avoided in polite conversation (religion, money, politics, etc.)?

Posted by: sally62 | July 10, 2010 7:11 AM

if you know one of your guys is gay and he is bleeding, how do you know he doesn't have aids...
Besides the fact that the militray tests for all communicalble diseases BEFORE troops are sent to their units, there are plenty of very straight heterosexuals hwo have AIDS. Its not just a gay disease. There are plenty of blood born pathogens out there (hepatitis to name one) that is much easiler to spread than AIDS.

WHat people don't seem to get is there are already gays serving. The military is still functioning and the world hasn't ended. All soldiers gay or straight have to follow the same rules for personal conduct, and this will not change if "Steve" has a picture of "jim" on his desk instead of Susie. All this will do is allow troops to have the people who they love present at military functions, can talk about the family trip to Disneyland without having to change the names and to allow the the most important person in their life get front and center at their funeral. Period!

Posted by: schnauzer21 | July 10, 2010 7:21 AM

Could we not simply add sexual choices to the list of topics best avoided in polite conversation (religion, money, politics, etc.)?
That would be fine, and most don't discuss it. But you can't get autiomatically discharged for saying you are a Republican or Jewish. You can and will if someone sees that the letter from home says " All my Love (insert name of person of same sex)"

Posted by: schnauzer21 | July 10, 2010 7:24 AM

Most Soldiers, Marines, Airmen and those in the Air Force perhaps have never worked, lived, survived, fought, died or called their fellow Soldier "brothers in arms" in a gay environment.

That said, the survey can only perceive what they may think..not what they know.

I cannot believe those especially in the combat arms branches of the military will easily allow gay men into their brotherhood..a deep and compelling since of connection to the man in the next firing position. In my mind, this should not occur. I have witnesses men being "pushed out" of the unit by their counterparts simply because the person was perceived to be weak, always late or an embarrassment to the unit. I cannot imagine the perception if the word is passed that "so and so" was seen downtown hold hands with another male.

The current administration needs to go slow on this we approach the 9th years of combat operations in Afghanistan..and nearly as long in Iraq. Many people are already on the line as to stay in or get out....passing a mandatory..."you will accept gay soldiers into your brotherhood"..might just tip the decisional result to getting out....


Posted by: LTC11A | July 10, 2010 7:38 AM

Folks, get with the program. The issue is not sexuality; the issue is benefits.

Posted by: RetiredOfficer | July 10, 2010 7:47 AM

Much like the crows said in the Walt Disney "Dumbo", "Have you ever seen an elephant fly?", I am of the belief that of all of the species currently living on this plant homo sapien is the only one that acts in this fashion. I have not yet seen a rogue male elephant endear themselves to another mail elephant, and the same goes with the long list of other species. So if it is not natural for them then it is not natural for oganizations like the armed forces who must maintain discipline and standards to survive to have to put up with this type environment.

Posted by: euripedes | July 10, 2010 8:12 AM

At the end fo the day, professional soldiers want to work among other professional soldiers who know there job and can get it done, ensuring the safety of their team. I could care less who you fall in love with, just acomplish the mission.

Euripedes, actully there is evidence that over 70 mammals, including your elephants, have some gay population. Read National Geogaphic,

Older story from 2004, and there are others.

Posted by: cadam72 | July 10, 2010 8:42 AM

So funny the comment about homo sapiens being the only species having same sex relations! Virtually every day I see my female Irish setter with her nose in the butt end of my female cocker spaniel. No cunnilingus yet, but imagine the possibilities! Not that I've got the time to monitor every moment of their activities. And neither should anyone in the military be paying that much attention to the private activities of fellow soldiers.

I think some people have been taking the old admonition "don't drop the soap" a bit too seriously. The survey question about showering together plays right into that ridiculous phobia.

Posted by: egrbvr | July 10, 2010 9:35 AM

If you were about to be treated for a severed artery from a combat wound by a gay medic, you would:

1. be glad a qualified medic could save your life
2. have no opinion, just thinking of mom
3. hope the medic saves my life, but tells me he is straight while doing so
4. rather die than have one of them save me
5. run like hell, ummm, well that is if I could, I mean, well....

This is another waste of money. And if the survey company didn't realize it shame on them. And if they did, shame on them. Maybe this survey is part of the gay agenda? :-)

Posted by: dezlboy1 | July 10, 2010 9:37 AM

The real reason this survey was done, IMHO, is to put pressure and intimidate the civilian leadership. Because only those with strong opinions on the issue will return the survey and because that can lead to a self selecting sample, no doubt that the majority would say they would be uncomfortable with gay and lesbian soldiers serving openly. The whole point I suspect is so that the military leadership, who will no doubt make the results public, will use the responses as public pressure on elected officials to back off on the proposed dropping of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.
Another thought for which I'm sure others have probably already noted: If such surveys were done about Desegregation and womens participation, do we really think that would have resulted in the military we have today?

Posted by: matthenry1 | July 10, 2010 9:53 AM

Well DAVE19, as a career member of our volunteer forces I believe that this survey is out of line because the mere concept of it is detrimental to good order and discipline.

The United States military is designed to be under the control of civilians and required to carry out ALL legal orders, not just the ones that align with a servicemember's personal views of beliefs. While in the service we expect to have fewer rights than those we stand ready to protect, but we have the additional compensation of serving our fellow citizens sometimes before ourselves.

Posted by: LMarie1 | July 10, 2010 10:05 AM

Again folks - you miss the real issue. If the Pentagon accepts gays in the ranks, spousal (partner) issues regarding benefits, particularly medical, are in play. This constitutes an enormous chunk of the DOD budget as it is - another many thousands of dependents is just what they do not want.

Posted by: RetiredOfficer | July 10, 2010 10:42 AM

Oh really, is that the real issue, Retired Officer? If so, we should immediately rescind all benefits for military spouses.

What's that, you say? That wouldn't be right?

Then why is it OK to deny the benefits to some spouses and not others?

I don't buy for one nanosecond your absurd notion that spousal benefits are "the real issue", but the fact you're making this ridiculous argument makes me glad you're no longer serving. The only reason this policy took so long to become outdated is because we had to wait for Neanderthals like you to leave.

So why don't you and your wife just sit back on your collective butts collecting your precious retirement benefits, and let brave gay and lesbian soldiers serve openly and with the honor and integrity you seem to lack.

Posted by: scooterndc | July 10, 2010 10:58 AM

First, you have to love the homophobes who keep using the phrase "crammed down our throats." As for the survey, this is a common first reaction to gays. Sex. Not are they good soldiers or neighbors. Not if they contribute to the good of society. Not if their very existence is a net plus. But sex.

I have a devout Christian 300 pound woman neighbor who hates a professional gay couple down the street because she finds sex between them disgusting. She does this while being totally unaware of the reaction she would generate if she were held to the same standard.

Come on homophobes. Strip down naked, stand in front of a full length mirror, and give an honest accounting before you throw the first stone.

Posted by: thomgr | July 10, 2010 11:48 AM

"A survey? Uhh, duhh, well, uh, I MIGHT wet my pants, if I find out someone in my unit is gay! Uh, I'd go AWOL, yea, that's what I'd do. And what about THAT dude?! He's not gay?? I swear I always knew he was a f**… hmm, and THAT chick is just so--- MANLY, I just KNEW she wuz a dy*e - what? she's married with kids? oh… well, at least the Army values my opinion when it comes to cleaning out our military. I mean, don't get me STARTED about the oriental dudes, and where is THAT chick from, she doesn't even look… human! Praise god there are at least some christian white people manning my gunpost, and I mean MAN-ing, jesus…" -signed, A Concerned Patriot Armed With A Survey

Posted by: LawsLuvr | July 10, 2010 11:59 AM

The military gets low marks for wasteful spending as usual.
$4.5 million to ask a stupid question as to whether the troops like to share space with each other has got to be among the the most foolish things they have dine in the past hundred years.
Gay, straight, black, brown, white, male or female the volunteer warrior has to share the most personal of commitments, that is to share protection of one another.

Posted by: kpyachtsman | July 10, 2010 1:31 PM

ScooternDC, I think you might have misread Retired Officer's comments. By noting that the military leadership has an economic interest in discrimination, Retired Officer didn't necessarily endorse it.

Posted by: catuskoti | July 10, 2010 1:51 PM

Quote:We didn't have a survey in the early 70's when we integrated the military services. But then, we were asking if the non-black military officers and senior enlisteds could handle the integration. The answer was a pretty solid yes, but with some reservations that actually panned out to be true. The Air Force overcompensated the promotions to blacks because they were blacks.

Since the racial integration of the military occured in the late 1940s/early 1950s, I have to question your anecdotal evidence.

The integration that was going on in the early 1970s was the integration of women from the separate WAC/WAF/WAVE corps into the regular military.

My take is similar to LMarie1's. Officers don't send out polls because it interferes with good order and discipline.

The poll itself is poorly worded, I would say at least a couple of the questions I read were borderline incitement to the reactions it ostensibly wants to document and/or prevent.

Lastly, the integration of races within the military and the integration of women had some huge bumps in the road, including increased crime rates. That doesn't mean they weren't worth doing simply because they were morally right. I feel the same way about this.

Posted by: Fabrisse | July 10, 2010 1:58 PM

Just substitute "Jews," "people of color," "WASPs," "rednecks," the rich, the poor, the ugly, the handicapped, Muslims, Jehovah Witnesses, Roman Catholics, Baha'i, people less than 100% perfectly healthy in mind, body, spirit, Protestants, Hindi, or any human group or tribe or OTHERS and see how open minded that sounds. Jeez, are we back in high school or, for that matter, National Socialist 1933 Germany here?

Posted by: adm1 | July 10, 2010 2:08 PM

While on active duty in the Navy I served with people I knew to be gay, including high ranking officers. It was never a problem because everyone was always professional. There is absolutely no reason why gays cannot openly serve their country; they're already serving covertly, and serving well.

As for the survey, of course its out of line. It is subtly suggesting that perhaps the troops should think about these issues and become concerned about them. Really, what is the point of the question about the commissary???

Posted by: Mockingbird1 | July 10, 2010 2:14 PM

To correct some errors in the comments (based on actually serving for 32 years).

The military integrated in the 1950s not the 1970s.

Women entering the main part of the military (there were women "auxiliaries" before integration) did create as big a stir...but in the following years it was glossed over by media and military. The media because they didn't get big headlines out it and the military because it wasn't a big deal--no riots, some grousing, but for the most part not a big deal.

Discrimination (both gender and race) continued after integration but it wasn't institutional and it wasn't condoned.

Racial integration did lead to tensions that built into demonstrations (some violent) at military bases in the 1970s (which is perhaps what one commenter was thinking of). However, this happened because of the movement outside the military which viewed the force as a catch all for those who couldn't make it elsewhere. Since the all volunteer for that hasn't been the case which means for the most part those in the military are better educated and better at adapting to different environments than those outside the military.

(a quick note: the general population of the miltiary excudes those who can't get a High School diploma for the most part and their officer core usually has at least one post graduate degree---thus the comment about better educated that the same age civilian population. Better adapted: they go everywhere and by the 5th year in service could have been stationed at several overseas and/or state-side posts versus the same person of similar age who might have only held one or two jobs in the same city as they "decided" to settle in).

My objection is the survey isn't being taken by everyone or by a sample of everyone--just by those willing to point themselves out as gay (with discretion of course). I don't believe leadership understands all the different views possible here just because they think they might hold some of those views.

I stopped thinking this kind of integration would be a problem when I heard Gen Powell try and say it couldn't happen because--"how would we integrated barracks (dorms) and housing...and what would benefits look like?" Which was the same argument for racial integration and for women in the military. Gen Powell has since changed his mind.

Will military members complain--plan on it; it's what we do...but can we comply; bet on it, this is our real specialty. What I think many are afraid of is that the military has led in both racial and gender integration and so it's possible we will lead in understanding that sexuality is private and a non-starter in how a soldier, sailor, Marine or airman preforms their military profession of arms.

Posted by: mil1 | July 10, 2010 2:38 PM

I got to read the whole survey this morning. During my 32 years of Army service I was instrumental in creating and also filling out quite a few surveys and this is the most poorly written and invasive document I have ever seen. Who approved this piece of screed?

Posted by: susanwhiteaker | July 10, 2010 3:19 PM

Let's see... In President Truman's time one of the questions would have been, "Do you feel that sharing a text, billet or shower with a negro would effect unit efficiency?"

Can any body guess what the answer would have been?

Posted by: mehrenst1 | July 10, 2010 3:53 PM

how can anyone vote on a poll that they've never seen??

Posted by: silencedogoodreturns | July 10, 2010 4:43 PM

There is nothing wrong with this questionairre. It's a small part of the process of determining if repealing DADT will negatively effect the military's ability to achieve its mission. The fact that the process was agreed to was what allowed the repeal measure to pass Congress.
The racial integration of the military and the repeal of DADT are incomparable because there was a draft in effect when Truman ordered integration. The military did not have to worry about attracting enlistments and retainment when the enlistment expired. Also there were extensive studies done before integration for several years before it was implemented. It wasn't something that Truman ordered implemented immediately as some on here have stated.
As for the tired excuse that all caution or criticism of homosexuality is a product of hate all I can say is grow up, get past the name calling and focus on what is the best course to insure the military is successful at winning wars.

Posted by: gn711 | July 10, 2010 4:44 PM

From the git-go, this "survey" demeans the purported professionalism of all U.S. Military personnel; it indicates that the brass are unsure of said professionalism.

If there are currently gays and lesbians in the military, why would you ask all if they have roomed, showered, etc. with one? What a stupid question.

If one is a professional person, whether in the military or in a civilian occupation, one should not be concerned about their fellow employees, whether gay, lesbian, or heterosexual. It is such a simple mindset.

As for the military, just remember, that their gay and lesbian soldiers' blood runs red, just like the rest.

Posted by: dozas | July 10, 2010 5:30 PM

All of the bigots who are against allowing gay men and lesbians to serve opening in the military are un-american, un-patriotic, and should be banned from serving in the military. Bigots must be kept out of the military - they would be a disgrace to the uniform.

Posted by: ashafer_usa | July 10, 2010 5:31 PM

Really strange that the Pentagon could send 400,000 survey forms expect confidentiality.

Posted by: Clagett | July 10, 2010 5:41 PM

This survey was promised to the troops by the Secretary of Defense. I am more interested in the write in web page where service members can write in.

As a retired military Vet, with 5 combat deployments, I am sure I served with open gay members, but not once in combat did they try to get on my Johnson! But they for sure knew our unit was wrapped really tight and they may have been fragged late into the night.

Some readers have commented that in the past there were no polls or surveys when the services integrated black members. Guess what you are born black, there is no scientific conclusion you are born gay! That is a choice you make.

I have written President Obama asking him how he plans to handle the logistics in field conditions.
There is no way a gay male should be allowed to room or shower with a straight male. Same thing goes for Lesbians, there is no way they should be allowed to live and shower with straight women. If Obama and his gay pleasing crowd allow this, law suits for sexual discrimination will be flying. I now have a law degree and guess what I will represent a straight member on these grounds.
My two liberal Senators from Colorado have no answers for the logistics question I ask as well. Liberals love to change the rules, but then have no idea of the little details.

Bottom line here on this is, 85 % of the combat deaths in these two recent wars comprise of white males average age 22, from rural America. They are Christian and on the majority do not agree with Obama’s Gay policy of reversing DADT. So the gay coalition better get on their horse and start recruiting to fill the combat slots that the white males will be leaving and minorities need to step up their combat billets as well. The “Great Leader” Barry Obama needs you to die in Afghanistan. Funny how he never served a day in uniform, I cannot wait for the double dip recession. For a guy who got the Noble Peace prize he sure loves sending kids to die in combat. Michael Steele was right it is Obama’s war, he is escalating it.
Ask the Soviets if they won there?

Posted by: fergy1963 | July 10, 2010 5:45 PM

How would they know if they showered with a gay soldier? What if your 4 Star General is gay.. then what? Or is that different?
The military is ridiculous and has a 1950's mentality.

Posted by: bozhogg | July 10, 2010 6:15 PM

Funny how he never served a day in uniform, I cannot wait for the double dip recession. For a guy who got the Noble Peace prize he sure loves sending kids to die in combat. Michael Steele was right it is Obama’s war, he is escalating it.
Ask the Soviets if they won there?
but it's ok with you that Bush/Cheney/Rumsfield never served? It's ok with you that Bush started 2 wars and didn't finish either one?
You do remember Bush, right? He's the guy who attacked Iraq FOR NO REASON.

Posted by: bozhogg | July 10, 2010 6:18 PM

Don't ask don't tell has worked just fine, they should just leave it alone.

Posted by: zcxnissan | July 10, 2010 10:17 PM

Paraphrasing a remark from a straight Marine - anyone who saves my a** can look at it anytime.

Republicans were having hissy fits that Gates & Co. were making a decision without input from soldiers. Well, now there's a survey and Republicans are still griping.

Posted by: angie12106 | July 11, 2010 3:21 AM

Don't kid yourself, America, we straight military guys know who's gay and who isn't gay in our units, and we don't particularly give a damn. I'll tell you one thing for sure, though: A gay guy in our unit in Vietnam made those lonely jungle nights a lot less lonely for quite a few of us. Surprised? That's too bad, because it's none of your damn business.

Posted by: georges2 | July 11, 2010 4:22 AM

On the subject of hetros & gays sharing the same shower, I'm waiting on a polling on the subject of fan based support dropping if all the closeted Pro Ball Players came out of the closet.

Just the hypocrisy of it all.

Posted by: waltk1 | July 11, 2010 1:30 PM

The Military branch of our Government has absolutely no right whatsoever to conduct a survey of this nature on the Troops that provide for the defense of this country. This despicable act of cowardice is actually serving to reveal the fact that certain military individuals within the Armed Forces remain armed with weapons which they continue to lob at the citizens of this country. Shameful! These very individuals must be removed from the system so that this cultural wound can heal and allow those who choose to exercise their right to vigorously defend their country are allowed to do so - as is clearly provided for in the Constitution. The Constitution does allow for individuals to become segregated into subgroups, and any action to the contrary must be silenced!

Further, this type of divisive selfish hollow action that seeks to pit active troops against each other as well as the American people are conducted solely as an attempt to achieve political ground that is centered only in the minds of a small and deviant group of dead-enders. It is time for all Americans to stand up and claim they will not tolerate this type of sh-t from certain military officials that seek to limit the rights of certain American citizens - especially the defenders of this country. Stand up now and use your voice to end these violations.

Posted by: Houle51 | July 11, 2010 4:46 PM

Correction to previous post:

. . . The Constitution does NOT allow for individuals to become segregated into subgroups, and any action to the contrary must be silenced . . .

Posted by: Houle51 | July 11, 2010 6:31 PM

As the saying goes i wouldn't touch that with a ten foot pole. Leave don't ask don't tell alone, it has worked fine for a couple decades why spoil it.

Posted by: zcxnissan | July 11, 2010 8:06 PM

Don't ask don't tell makes sense. Serving "openly" under any special status is bullshit. Put on the uniform and follow orders. Follow rules of conduct. Too bad if you are gay and too bad if you are straight. Equal is equal. If gay men are allowed to bunk and shower with those of their sexual preference then straight men should be allwed equal treatment.

Posted by: Hadafakaya | July 13, 2010 8:16 AM

Gay and lesbian soldiers are out there dying for you stupid right win morons right now. The first casualty in the Iraq war was a gay marine sargeant--google it if you dont believe me. The pilot who provided air cover for the Battle of Baghdad was gay and won great recognition for preventing an ambush was just thrown out of the Air Force with the garbage a few years before his pension would have kicked in. Should they suffer abuse at the same time they are laying down their lives for us? How many of you GOP bastards served with us?

Trust me, there are thousands upon thousands of mean, tough gay killers out there.

The US Constitution says that the military is subordinate to civilian rule: they follow orders, they do not get to vote on policy in surveys. 70% of the citizenry want the band lifted. This will be a big nothing in effect once it is done. Get educated on this.

Posted by: audiemurphy | July 13, 2010 2:08 PM

The Pentagon is looking for excuses to discriminate against gays because it is run by old, homophobic men who think that gays have no business in the military and want them all fired. Since the 1970s, they have ignored their own tax-payer funded studies that show that gays contribute as much as straight soldiers and that fears of "unit cohesion" exist only in the imagination of the brass.

This survey would not pass a Stats 101 class project and is intended to give the Brass more excuses to deny gay American soldiers their basic equality and dignity that every other NATO nation offers.

Posted by: AxelDC | July 14, 2010 12:08 PM

My understanding of the military is that it is a place of orders, not opinions and those orders are to be followed without question or debate. As Mark Thompson states in his article in Time (,8599,2003075,00.html): if we want an opinion, we'll issue it to you.

Polling troops on anything sets up precedent that can be refered to in the future; as some people have been refering to other intergrations precedents on NOT polling in their posts. In the future, that reference will not be "we never polled about [fill in the policy] before" but rather "we polled on gays in the military, so why we should poll on [future policy] as well." This sets up the potential to distablize the cohesion that so many say is necessary to the military and a unit functioning properly.

Unfortunately, once you go there it is hard to go back. We've gone there, so, when we bemoan potential future burecratic (or democratic?) process that come about in the military in the future, just recall where it all started.

Posted by: cowboyram | July 15, 2010 11:27 AM

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