DADT (Don't Ask Don't Tell)

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by sealion, Feb 24, 2008.

  1. sealion

    sealion Member

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    There has been quite a bit of debate going on since the new year in college newspapers - notably Cornell and Columbia - regarding ROTC and "Don't Ask Don't Tell."

    Prompted, if I remember correctly, by a debate among Democratic presidential candidiates who responded to a question asked by Tim Russert about supporting the Solomon Amendment (1996); which was upheld by the Supreme Court in 2006.

    The link and quotes below are from the Syracuse student newspaper. It is a short and very relevant article.


    .

    http://media.www.dailyorange.com/me....Election.Could.Spark.Reinstate-3224432.shtml

    Here's to hoping that they all keep their word.

    ^^^Thank you!^^^
     
  2. sealion

    sealion Member

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    ROTC in Stanford's newspaper

    Linked is an article in The Stanford Daily Newspaper

    http://daily.stanford.edu/article/2008/3/5/candidatesInFavorOfRotcOnCampus


    And finally...

    Good point, Prof. Kennedy.
     
  3. sealion

    sealion Member

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    Ongoing Cornell DADT debate

    The article/editorial quoted below appeared in the "The Cornell Daily Sun" recently:

    Another Side of ROTC
    March 7, 2008 - 12:00am
    By Mike Wacker

    “Against gay marriage? Then don’t get one and shut up.” By this standard, often considered the crux of gay rights, no one has the right to impose their moral views on the lives of others, prohibiting retaliation against homosexuals. To activists, this mantra and Cornell’s mantra of “Open Doors, Open Hearts, Open Minds” serve as the paragon of diversity and tolerance. Yet simultaneously, some activists desire retaliation against Cornell ROTC, calling for their removal over moral objections to “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” which prohibits gays from openly serving in the military.

    Anyone who blames the ROTC for DADT demonstrates a lack of knowledge about ROTC and the military. When I interviewed Lieutenant Colonel Brian Page of Cornell Army ROTC about his personal opinions on the subject, he drove home the point that the military did not create DADT; it is a federal law. “I don’t get to choose which laws I obey and disobey,” he said. Page also stressed that the military is an apolitical organization. If they wanted to, they could take over the government. So it’s important that they stay out of political battles. For those who remain unconvinced, consider former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Peter Pace, who called homosexuality immoral. Quoting Gabriel Arana’s column blasting the ROTC, he would have responded, “them’s fightin’ words.” Luckily for Arana, General Pace cannot take him up on his challenge.

    The military world differs significantly from the civilian word, justifying some actions in the former due to necessity. “This is not a social organization; it is not a corporate job for hire,” said Lt. Col. Page. One cannot disobey military orders, and soldiers don’t go on strike. I may not be a military expert, but I can safely say that soldiers protesting Army policy would deserve a court-martial and dishonorable discharge for abandoning their colleagues and potentially putting their lives at risk, not a pretty medal for their tireless work promoting social justice. The military can only concern itself with military matters. While Page explained that officers have flexibility in how they enforce DADT, they still cannot openly defy the law. If the law were to change, the military would execute that change, but they should not be the initial agent of change.

    On top of this, civilians who call for the removal of the ROTC have little at stake. Page explained that for him, ignoring DADT could potentially result in a court-martial. Yet I doubt his civilian critics would ever face a similar fate. When I asked him how the military would change if every college removed ROTC, he said it would not. This caught me off guard, Page noted that the Constitution requires both an Army and a Navy. Thus, our recruits must come from somewhere, even if that means reinstituting the draft. Not only would replacing trained leaders with draftees give the average student an incentive to keep the ROTC, it would also lessen the quality of the military. And under the Solomon Amendment, kicking out the ROTC would result in a loss of federal funding, affecting groups unconnected to ROTC with no political connections at all. So I ask, does this justify a draft? Does it justify sacrificing national security? Does it justify the collateral damage the loss of federal funding would create? This is the price of blind obedience to social justice.

    Such blind obedience also targets the wrong group. According to Page, the power to change DADT lies not in the military but in our elected representatives. He added that officers do not receive a commission until after graduation, at which point one can only blame the federal government for the denial of their ability to serve. As I view it, separation of powers matters not only for the legislative, judicial and executive branch, but it also matters for the civilian and military worlds. In fact, Page had a great analogy on blaming ROTC for DADT: “It’s like blaming a soldier for the Iraq War.”

    Furthermore, the military science department, which is inseparable from ROTC, does not discriminate, letting anyone take its classes. In fact, the department has a historic role. “The university has had a military tactics faculty since it was founded and was part of the basis for its founding as a land grant university,” Page said. Not only does this department, which benefits civilians and military alike, not discriminate, but I spoke with a friend in ROTC who described her colleagues not as homophobes but as normal people. Thus, I find it astonishing that some gay rights activists still call for the removal of ROTC from campus. It displays a breathtaking level of closed-mindedness and intolerance towards the ROTC, while at the same time demanding open-mindedness and tolerance towards their views.

    Even if it’s just personal opinion, Page and anyone in ROTC have limits on what they can say due to their involvement in the military. However, I am a civilian and have “permission to speak freely.” Cornell ROTC has just as much right to be here as homosexuals, and the values of our university have room for both groups. But if anyone has to be given the boot, it’s the anti-ROTC activists. There is no place at Cornell for their disgraceful attitude towards the military or their hypocritical intolerance.

    Here's the link: http://cornellsun.com/node/28619

    There has been a fair amount of back and forth in the Cornell newspaper recently regarding DADT and ROTC at Cornell. I commend the ROTC leadership there for communicating professionally and with clarity.
     
  4. sealion

    sealion Member

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  5. justawife

    justawife Founding Member

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  6. USNA2014

    USNA2014 New Member

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    Hi Sealion this is USNAGolden2014 from CC :)
    This forum is very nice, thank you for giving me the link

    Anyway I had to post because Mike Wacker (the author of the article) is one of the few kids in my schools history to go to an Ivy. He is also a friend of mine and it is really bizzare to see his article posted here :)

    But I do find the entire argument ridiculous (the anti-ROTC side), there is absolutely no reason to protest a student organization that trains our military officers because of gay rights or any other minoirty rights. If you want to protest, do it to the legislative branch. America is a republic and as a republic the power to affect ALL public policy is dictated by Congress (though it can be revised by the SC). By banning ROTC on elite college campuses you are only discriminating against a common elite college minority, those who plan on serving in the military. Discrimination of any kind is not productive especially if you are only discriminating as a form of vengeance because of your discrimination.
    Matters such as these only serve to widen the chasm dividing the military class and elitist liberals.
     
  7. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    On a side note, I will say that one of my most impressiveswabs wasa homosexual. She did not feel right lying, or deceiving those around her to that fact. It went against her oath to lie about it. She came forward and was separated from CGA. As I understood it, she did not harbor ill will, and understood that the academy, and the Coast Guard in general was just enforcing federal law. If you ask me would she have made a fine USCG officer, I would have said certainly, from what I had seen in the first few years she was there.
     
  8. sealion

    sealion Member

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    ^^^Know of people like that, as well; and yet it seems equally undue to hold responsible ROTC college students and their leadership for national DADT policy.
     
  9. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    I completely agree, as were the sentiments of the girl who was effected. She did not blame the service and understood it was enforcement of a federal law. People who don't like that should not be complaining to an a-political military, but instead to their representatives in Congress.
     
  10. USNA69

    USNA69 Banned

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    We had those in the Navy also. Their moral/ethical dilemma usually surfaced immediately prior to an extended deployment. I would imagine that with Individual Augmentation, even more are not stepping forward to carry their share of the load.

    Correct me if I am wrong, but unless they are 'practicing', there is no problem.
     
  11. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    As I underatand it, which may be wrong...


    If you are NOT practicing, but admit to being a homosexual, you will receive and honorable discharge. You can also never join again, which is different from other honorable discharges.

    If you ARE practicing, you are violating federal law and you would subject to prosecution. UCMJ's definition of "sodomy" is very liberal, and includes any kind of "non-vaginal" sex.

    Don't Ask Don't Tell, therefore would protect the first person, who would be able to serve as long as they did not admit to anything. If they did come forward, they would receive an honorable discharge. If someone was caught in a homosexual relationship, and this involved them "practicing" then I believe, however am not certain, that DADT would not apply, considering they were violating US federal law.


    DADT, I think, also applies to retired members of the service.
     
  12. live4ever

    live4ever Parent

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    "intolerant tolerance"

    I just read a number of the posts and articles on DADT and ROTC... I found out a few days ago that American University (my D is going there in the fall on an AROTC scholarship) has forbiden their ROTC students from forming their own club based on the DADT law:mad:. My D feels outraged that any group of students with a common interest can form their own club except those students who have chosen to serve their country. A club is formed solely for the purpose of social activities not (or at least it should not be) for activism. What kind of threat to the other groups would they constitute???? Other student groups have the privilege of their own web pages on the AU website (I will mention none...), but there is not even a link to the ROTC battalion .... Yet there are currently 69 ROTC students on campus. Those groups who advocate tolerance and diversity are the first ones to display the worst intolerance toward others. I have the right to disagree with anyone's policy or lifestyle or religion or ideas. I do not have the right to prevent them from participation in any religion, or lifestyle. This is what this country is all about and this is what our young men and women in uniform are protecting: the right to be forbiden to form their own social club. SOMEONE OUT TO SPEAK UP!!!!!!!!!!!:bang:
     
  13. VMINROTChopeful

    VMINROTChopeful Member

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    AU sounds really evil. :mad: i'm glad i didn't apply there. :mad:
     
  14. sealion

    sealion Member

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    Hi live4ever,

    First, huge congratulations on your daughter's AROTC scholarship to American University. At American she very likely will find she has much in common with the other outstanding young people in ROTC there.

    It has been my observation that many non-ROTC students on most college campuses are fairly supportive of their fellow students who desire to serve. At most schools the anti-DADT representation has had minimal success in recruiting the at-large student population for support.

    What I have seen as well, is that the ROTC students I know have loads of friends (in and out of ROTC), get invited to social events, interact well with faculty and participate in college sports.

    Yes, it is a strange schizophrenia on college campuses that allows privileges to other groups that object to homosexuality and yet targets ROTC students.

    Your daughter is doing a tremendous service to the other college students at American by being a part of ROTC and being willing to wear the uniform. That takes true and uncommon courage and is appreciated.

    It would be great if you could post occasionally how it goes for the AROTC students at American. I'm very interested.
     
  15. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    I'm not so sure about it. First, the DADT only applies to the military, not to other federal employees, so in the future they maybe working with a homosexual GS. It is illegal for people to be discriminated based on sexual orientation, with the exception of the military. I would imagine that having students who are paid by the US Govt, and who are members of the military, create a group would be considered discriminatory. I understand the frustration, but for it to be an ROTC group...I don't think that is appropriate. For the ROTC members to participate in a group, outside of ROTC with the same basic premise, that doesn't seem Army endorsed.
     
  16. live4ever

    live4ever Parent

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    I am not sure I am getting the point here...
     
  17. live4ever

    live4ever Parent

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    Thanks for a very encouraging reply and I time goes by, I will keep you informed.
     
  18. sealion

    sealion Member

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    Hey live4ever,

    Sorry if I confused you but DADT is a sticky, tricky (and frustrating) policy the way it is selectively referenced for ROTC students by some colleges.

    The bottom line is be proud of your amazing daughter (I know you already are - and I am, too) you must have raised her well.

    Lots of folk think that DADT policy may simply be the current argument used to limit ROTC presence on college campuses. If DADT is repealed then another objection may take its place.

    Unfortunately, your daughter might experience some negative reactions to her participation in ROTC. Service academy parents have cited disrespectful commentary about their children's education and career goals, as well.

    Good luck. There are lots of great opportunities in DC.
     
  19. live4ever

    live4ever Parent

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    QUOTE=sealion;19847]Hey live4ever,

    Sorry if I confused you but DADT is a sticky, tricky (and frustrating) policy the way it is selectively referenced for ROTC students by some colleges.

    The bottom line is be proud of your amazing daughter (I know you already are - and I am, too) you must have raised her well.

    Lots of folk think that DADT policy may simply be the current argument used to limit ROTC presence on college campuses. If DADT is repealed then another objection may take its place.

    Unfortunately, your daughter might experience some negative reactions to her participation in ROTC. Service academy parents have cited disrespectful commentary about their children's education and career goals, as well.

    Good luck. There are lots of great opportunities in DC.[/QUOTE]
    Sorry sealion...
    My "confused" comment was in regard to LineInTheSand posting, not yours. I totally understand what you meant and she is ready for the challenge (at least I hope she is...):smile:Yes DC is full of opportunities, that is why she chose it. I think American is a good choice regardless of their bias, they are a good school and i would not discourage anyone for going there. knowing that the ROTC cadets population is very high is comforting to her as well.. they all share a lot in common. She experienced it at WP last summer. One of the many things she enjoyed was the common motivation and interests.
    As i mentioned before i will make sure to keep posting any relevant info on ROTC at AU!
     
  20. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    "I found out a few days ago that American University (my D is going there in the fall on an AROTC scholarship) has forbiden their ROTC students from forming their own club based on the DADT law"



    :eek:


    Live4Ever....I understand the confusion now. I thought you were saying that the members of the ROTC program wanted to start a club that was based on DADT, and that the university was forbidding the creation of that group. You're saying that they cannot have a club because of the military's DADT policy.


    Yes, that makes much more sense and I totally, 100% disagree with the university. It makes MUCH more sense than what I originally thought, that they wanted a "Don't Ask Don't Tell" Club.

    I am sorry for the confusion, it was all lost in translation for me.:thumb:
     

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