DADT repealed


 "If you can fight and die for your country, there's absolutely no reason why you can't be granted the full set of rights" that others have, including the ability to marry a same-sex partner, said Fred Sainz, vice president at the Human Rights Campaign

In a moment of history when all seemed lost, and Obama’s Administration condemned for failing gays, a moment of miracle came at the very last breath of the US Congress to repeal the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (DADT). This law has been used to expel able servicemen from the US army for simply telling the truth of their sexual orientation was finally repealed on Sat 18 Dec, 2010. It was a very close vote as an overwhelming majority of 60 votes was required in the US Senate to pass the cloture motion limiting debate. The cloture motion was passed 63 to 33, and the final tally thereafter requiring a simple majority was passed 65 to 31.

The DADT policy has been extremely detrimental to the US Army with more than 13,000 being discharged since 1993 not because they did not do the job but simply because they were gay. It is estimated that there are 60,000 gays serving in the armed forces.

The reasons used by Senator Cain and anti-gay groups were quite condescending and unpatriotic:-

a) Claiming that it is an elitist liberal mandate when the Armed Forces chiefs and the Armed Force surveys indicated little resistance to gays serving in the US Armed Forces.

b) Insinuating that Soldiers having their legs blown off not needing the distraction, when it was the result of war and not because of gays. This is particularly insulting to gays serving in the army as it demean their sacrifices and imply that their war services do not count.

c) Emphasizing that the mid-term elections were a message to the Government that its policies on DADT were not accepted by the majority of the public, when the election was about the high unemployment rates, and the economy and not about DADT.

The anti-gay lobby tried to divert the agenda to other issues such as the budget deficit claiming that it should be resolved first. This is rather ironical as their Republican allies went on a spending regime of 900 billion with tax cut to the rich as their first measure in the Senate, thus adding to the deficit.

In general, the hatred for gays by the Christian Right is so extreme that they became unpatriotic against those risking their lives in Afghanistan. Indeed, more than 13,000 have been discharged from the armed forces, losing vital resources required to win the war effort against terrorism. The Christian Fundamentalists were willing to risk harm to the nation’s war effort just to come against the basic rights of gays.

We are reminded of the limitation of blacks to serve in the army in WWII, and when integration came in 1948, it was not an issue. Gays have always been in the army serving, but forced to stay in the closet to deny their sexual orientation and to live in a lie. It follows that if gays can serve in the army and die for the nation, then they can no longer be considered as 2nd class citizens.

The Christian Right is vary that once Gays were allowed to serve openly in the Armed Forces, a significant milestone will be reached that would pave the way for the right to marry. The public opinion has also changed significantly since 1993 when only 44% believed that gays who disclosed their orientation should serve in the army, to 77% in 2010.

Even with such a large majority supporting the repeal, the passage through the Senate has been less than certain due to the fear mongering and blatant lies broadcasted by the Christian Right. Despite their efforts, truth shall always prevail and justice will flow down river with increasing momentum and volume that cannot be easily stopped. The opening for dialogue has been long over and perhaps is meaningless when it is not based on integrity and sincerity even though we would have expected bible believing Christians to behave in a Christ like manner.

The Christian Post calls it tragic the repeal of DADT, but the tragedy here is that this unjust law against those who sacrificed so much for the country has been supported and championed by the Christian Right for so long. It is a real shame that we have been hiding behind the lie that gays were causing harm to the army morale, when gays have always been in the army and the law was causing harm to them. If we can push and fight for a lie for 20 years that is totally unjust and unpatriotic, perhaps it speaks of how far the church has fallen morally and require redemption. Gays are just the sacrificial lambs to be slaughtered purely for our own self interest so that our own theological construction makes sense and nothing more.  

There would be a great dismay in the Christian Right anti-gay groups when the day of truth comes when we find no adverse impact even with gay marriages. Nothing will change at all. It was a non issue and always has been a non issue except in the minds of the Christian Right who made it up to be a gay agenda. This day is coming sooner rather than later. It was only 41 years ago from the Stonewall Riots that set off a pride movement for the GLBT community to begin to come out and stand up for their own rights.  When we see that all our “prophecies” were indeed false, there may come a realization of how evil and cruel we are, all in the name of Jesus Christ. Would Christ forgive us?

 The Christian Right maybe fearful that when it is all over, the nations will realise that their anti-gay campaign is all a lie and they would have to answer to God for it. They know deep in their conscience that gays are innocent, and the day of reckoning and justice is getting closer. They must obviously continue to fight on to prevent the truth and justice to prevail for in defeat they will be proved wrong when non of the harm they prophesied had happened. The tide of justice can never be stopped even the dam put up by the Christian Right is beginning to break and to overflow. When the dam breaks, it may drown Christianity itself - our claim for integrity, righteousness and of God.

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