Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Military Charges Soldiers Dismissed Under DADT

While we have had some victories with the repeal of DADT, it appears as though the discriminatory policy is still having a negative impact on the lives of those who have been dismissed because of who they love. In the newest chapter in the story surrounding Lt. Dan Choi (who was one of the leading grassroots activists fighting for repeal), we learn that the military is actually billing members of our armed forces that were dismissed through DADT.
In 2008, Choi was paid a $10,000 bonus for enlisting in the National Guard for three years. Now that he has been discharged under the military’s ban on openly gay service members, the Defense Department says he owes $2,500 for failing “to satisfactorily complete that assigned term,” according to a military spokesman.
Choi is refusing to pay the bill arguing that he shouldn't be charged because of the government had an "unethical policy." What is amazing is that despite the fact that Congress and the Obama administration have made it clear that they don't support the policy, people are still being harmed because of this discriminatory policy. Furthermore, it's likely that we wouldn't have even heard of the charges that are happening to many members of our armed forces if Lt. Dan Choi hadn't received his bill. Throughout the debate surrounding DADT repeal, after all, we didn't hear about these soldiers being charged. It was only when it happened to somebody famous. This is simply unacceptable.

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