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Obama, Where is "the Urgency of Now" in Not Changing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"?

Obama, thus far, has been the steely pragmatic president more than the ideological, dare I say principled politician, that the "wingnuts" of the right feared. Nowhere has this been more evident than in his refusal to order, as commander-in-chief, the lifting of "don't ask, don't tell", whereby gay men and women in the US military, must remain in the closet.

I wrote about this first, over two year ago. This is plainly a litmus test issue. All Republican candidates for the President, came out predictably against changing the policy, all Democrat challengers, just as predictably, for changing it. 75% of the American public are behind removing this restriction. The majority, 73%, of American military personnel, men and women, want it changed. Every Western power including Israel, allows homosexuals in the military. Once 'staid olde' Victorian, Britain even recruits them openly, in advertising campaigns on their 'gay pride' day. So why is Obama stonewalling? See critical Olbermann video.

Upwards of a hundred Pentagon American Arabic translators have now been fired, since they were discovered, horror of horrors to have been gay, since Bush 43, and now Obama have taken office. Does the war on terrorism take a back seat to this neanderthal red meat issue? The answer is apparently yes, or is Obama going to make this an issue for 2012 and force Republican candidates, in the face of overwhelming public opposition, to maintain their ludicrous support of "don't ask don't tell"?

I suppose Obama by 'stonewalling' is ultimately indeed, the pragmatic adroit politician, and by delaying implementing of a new policy (by 2010 or 2012), is presenting a gift wrapped opportunity for the Republicans appropriately, to look so openly and ludicrously out of touch with the American public, and even the rank and file American servicemen and women.

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Comments (6)


Nah. Haven't you realized yet that his promises all have expiration dates? On this one, it was 20 Jan 2009. You're seeing the Chicago way here - promises are made, with no intention of keeping them if they're the least bit inconvenient.

And in this case, gays were a demographic that could be thrown under the bus.

How about the one about not raising taxes on folks making under $250k? The impact of increased tobacco taxes is disproportionatly felt by the poor - as will be the taxes from Cap&Trade on food, energy, housing...

But don't worry - I'm SURE he's going to promise it again when he runs for reelection. And I'm sure that all will be forgiven, and he'll have hundreds of thousands of supporters who haven't figured out yet he has NO intention of keeping the promise.

But hope and change, baby! Hope and change!

Mac Lorry:
Nowhere has this been more evident than in his refusal to order, as commander-in-chief, the lifting of "don't ask, don't tell",

Sorry, Obama doesn't have the authority as commander-in-chief to override the law. The pesky constitution requires Obama to get congress to pass a bill that removes or modifies the existing law, which he then signs into law.

Being pragmatic, Obama knows he would expend a lot of political capital in pushing for such a law and he needs that capital to succeed in crippling the economy with carbon cap and tax and government healthcare.

Just because some people are for a given issue doesn't mean that's their top priority in voting. What happens in the 2010 and 2012 elections will be determined by the state of the economy and the success or failure in protecting this nation from another 9/11 magnitude attack, not by some back page issue like an openly gay military.

Paul Hooson:

Obama is probably moving too slowly on this issue because of political considerations. However, that is of little consolation to those persons in the military given an unjust discharge just because of their sexuality.

It's great to see a fresh post from you, Steve. You're a great writer. Don't make yourself a stranger around here. Write more often. You often find something new or present an angle on issues that differ from Lee and myself.

Mac Lorry:

If Congress and Obama decide to make the military openly gay, then to be fair to those already serving, they should be offered a one-time get-out-free with no penalty option. Some currently serving would have never joined the military if it was openly gay and it's unjust to require them to complete their current enlistment in light of such a historically unprecedented change. Men who have served in combat know it's no place for sexual intrigue amoung the officers and the men.


I forget, did you guys vote for hope and change in the last election cycle? or was it for a pragmatic adroit politician?

Im also a little curious how the gays that voted for Obama feel about their issue being held up for a few years just to provide a handy campaign issue (again) for Capt. BullShirt.
Hint: They're gay, not stupid.

While Im piling on, Id also like to mention that the american military, being largely conservative, should be a pretty good indicator of the general conservative opinion. If 73% of the military thinks dont ask/dont tell isnt needed, odds are that its not quite the divisive campaign issue your making it out to be. Lets not forget which party gave us Dont Ask/Dont Tell in the first place.


Steve, you're so full of shit it's pathetic. Barry will give the gays 'hope and change' when he no longer has to worry about reelection.


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Editors: Lee Ward, Larkin, Paul S Hooson, and Steve Crickmore

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