In the world most people inhabit, someone of Senator Barbara Boxer’s status would laugh themselves silly at the idea that Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is remotely comparable to Saudi Arabia’s beheading of gays, or Iran’s hanging of gays, or Pakistan’s stoning of gays, or North Korea’s rejection of the “popular gay culture in the West, which many perceive to embrace consumerism, classism and promiscuity.” That’s not how things work in Barbara Boxer’s world:
“We now stand — with this rule — with countries like Iran, North Korea and Pakistan in banning gays and lesbians from military service,” Boxer said as Lieberman, an independent who aligns himself with Democrats, nodded his head.
“Now our brave young men and women fight alongside allies like Australia, the United Kingdom and others who allow gays and lesbians to serve openly,” she said. “Let’s not stand with Pakistan, and with North Korea and Iran. It’s just wrong. This is the moment to move our country forward.”
In contrast to the nations mentioned above (I’m sure there are more), DADT was established to allow gays to serve in the U.S. military, as long as their chain of command didn’t officially know that Sgt. Joe Jones was sleeping with Cpl. Steve Smith of another command. It always seemed sensible that DADT should apply to people no matter their orientation. As long as sexual politics were minimized, professional behavior maintained, rules regarding fraternization observed, and chains of command adhered to, what a person did, and with whom, off-duty and in private, were and are personal matters.
DADT permitted gays to enlist/re-enlist, or be appointed as Warrant Officers and Commissioned officers, many of whom, no doubt, have distinguished themselves in their military service. Granted, “we” don’t know of many of them AS gay soldiers, sailors, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen because of the constraints of DADT. Their squad mates knew and know, but it didn’t matter because the gay service members did their jobs, and accomplished their assigned missions.
What the Barbara Boxers fail to recognize are the military members’ concerns that throwing out DADT, and throwing wide the doors to openly gay service members is an institutional mindset; ‘we’ are treated to depictions in the media of the LGBT community as flamboyant and/or abrasive. If young Tommy Brown from Podunk, who never knew a gay person in his hometown, is suddenly thrust into a boot camp barracks situation, and finds himself seemingly the focus of a “Queer Eye” episode, it’s doubtful he will handle it well. By the same token, the LGBT members will, to paraphrase, have to do twice as much, to be considered half as good.
With DADT in place, these scenarios are much less likely to occur.
Barbara Boxer’s moral equivalency leaves much to be desired; one can only wonder if she considers FGM, “honor killings”, women as chattel as having corollaries here in the U.S. Of course, her self-image is such that she believes herself immune; after all, she humiliated a Brigadier General when he, as is appropriate, referred to her as “Ma’am.” She doesn’t exactly seem to have a lock on just where her loyalties should lie.
Even Maureen Dowd has been known to mention in passing Saudi Arabia’s practice of beheading gays, so Boxer really has no excuse for HER ignorance.