Saturday, February 13, 2010

Reserve Officers Association Changes Position on Don't Ask, Don't Tell

There has been a lot of people in both the general public and the military community who have recently expressed their support of repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the policy which prevents members of the LGBT community from serving openly in the US military. Although they didn’t endorse the president’s plan to allow gays to serve openly, the Reserve Officers Association voted on Wednesday to “rescind its previous call for complete exclusion of gays and lesbians serving in the U.S. military.”

In a statement, retired Rear Admiral Paul T. Kayye, ROA president, pointed out that this vote essentially means the organization has gone from urging Congress “to exclude homosexuals from induction, enlistment, commissioning and continued service in the Armed Forces of the United States” to having no position on the issue.
“While our membership voted down a position supporting the current law, our actions fell short of endorsing the administration’s current position that would allow gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military,” said retired Rear Admiral Paul T. Kayye, ROA president. “No inference should be made as to the association’s position as we do not currently have one on this issue.”

“The sense of the membership was that this issue should be resolved by currently serving military leaders,” he said.
At the same time, the ROA isn’t ruling out the possibility of potentially taking a stance in support of allowing gays to serve openly at it’s next meeting this summer. In the big scheme of things, what this vote represents is yet another example of why the president and Congress need to move forward with the repeal of DADT. The discriminatory policy reflects outdated thinking that has no place in our country’s military. In the interests of equality and national security, we need to see concrete action taking very quickly on this issue.

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