“Democrats Lean Towards Caving On DADT,” We Lean Towards Screaming From Our Eyeballs

You may recall from past episodes of “What The Fuck Is Happening With DADT” that the Democrats had tied the repeal to a defense authorization bill that would have given the army money it (ostensibly) needed. You may also remember that the Republicans (by which I mean John McCain) still filibustered it, because he hates thinking about gay people in uniform even more than he loves funding wars. Also, Defense Secretary Robert Gates told reporters in Australia, “I would like to see the repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’ but I’m not sure what the prospects for that are. We’ll just have to see.”

This article from Salon says, among other things, that “the first instinct of your Democratic congressional leadership is to avoid accomplishing anything during the forthcoming lame duck session, so it looks increasingly like they’ll remove the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell” from the bill.”

I had no real commentary on this, because it is just too discouraging and stupid and awful for me to form thoughts. Jesus Christ. I don’t know what to tell you. Take your feelings about this and multiply them by the time it took you to vote on Tuesday plus your copay per doctor’s visit (assuming you have insurance) and then divide by the number of times you can listen to Ani‘s “Hello Birmingham” or alternately “Coming Up” in one day. Then lay on your floor for a while, see if that helps.

Anyways, here’s what Salon said yesterday:

The White House, to its credit, confirmed yesterday that it would really like Democrats to repeal that horrible policy before the end of the year. Should Congress fail to act, the logical next step would be an executive order ending enforcement of the policy. Whether deliberate, process-respecting Obama would dare end a discriminatory policy by fiat is an open question. But if he doesn’t, the policy will just … remain in place, as a new Congress worries about taxes and repealing Obamacare.

However, yesterday Harry Reid and two other democratic senators pledged publicly that they remain committed to a repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Today Harry Reid affirmed his support for a repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell ON TWITTER, saying, “I stand by commitment to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

So. There you have it.


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Rachel

Rachel is Autostraddle's Managing Editor and the editor who presides over news & politics coverage. Originally from Boston, MA, Rachel now lives in the Midwest. Topics dear to her heart include bisexuality, The X-Files and tacos. Her favorite Ciara video is probably "Ride," but if you're only going to watch one, she recommends "Like A Boy." You can follow her on twitter and instagram.

Rachel has written 1142 articles for us.

24 Comments

  1. For voting time, is there a separate variable I should be using for my absentee ballot? Because I hate math, but at this point that equation would be easier than the head-fuckery that is this repeal process.

    • Unless Reid is talking about family outings on Twitter like Senator Gillibrand does, it’s probably controlled by a staffer sitting behind him in meetings. Someone should ask him what a hashtag is at the next town hall meeting to verify.

  2. I sort of wonder what smart, ambitious intern is in charge of Harry Reid’s twitter account. I’d like to imagine they are as tired of this as we are and they’re slowly losing faith in the legislative process. Maybe this anonymous intern is unable to comprehend how these elected officials can be so out of touch with the electorate and has become a lame duck congress set on accomplishing nothing. It’s really sad to watch someone’s dreams die, you know? They wanted to change the world, but it’s just not the time; they have to wait a few more years.

    • Now now, let’s be nice to that intern. Otherwise (s)he may lose hope, quit and start applying for the same DC jobs I am, and I cannot subsist on a diet of pasta and unemployed much longer!

  3. siiiiigh….are we there yet??

    just fuckin repeal this shit so I can go back into the military, be a flight surgeon and pay off my medical school loans….and hurry, my kids gonna start college in 12 years.

  4. DO WE LIVE ON CRAZY PLANET?!?! I WANT TO MOVE TO LADIES HAPPY FROZEN PIZZA PARTLY CLOUDY KITTENS TOMATO SOUP LOVE AND TEQUILA PLANET!!! plz.

    but srsly. I don’t even know what to say about these things. they don’t make sense in my brain.

  5. I’m still good with DADT. I think its humorous that the same people that cry big ol’ crocodile tears about how terrible it must be not to be able to kiss your loved one good-bye (never mind that everybody in the world knows about DADT by now, and what it means) will cheerfully call me a homophobic bigot, disregard my decade of service, and sneer at my concerns about being forced to let a homosexual stand by and watch me shower or change. So that we’re clear, my experience, and my perspective: meaningless because I disagree; a homosexual, however, is absolutely above reproach because there is no truth, morals are strictly subjective, as are the concepts of “right” and “wrong.” Gotcha. I guess if they repeal DADT I’ll just surf out my 99 weeks of unemployment then go into the civil sector….

    • um, why are you here? like did westboro’s website crash? are you a dementor? do you like going to chuck e. cheese and shit on children’s birthday cakes?? i really want to know. what the fuck are you? how do people like you exist??? is this real life? are you fucking serious?

      • To be honest I am more concerned that there are people with such enormous egos roaming the world. “being forced to let a homosexual stand by and watch me shower or change” Honey what? Nobody is watching you shower or change. You need to take that private fantasy to therapy time. Or a sex club.

        People in the military who are not paranoid fantastists are too busy e.g. serving their country and eating sandwiches to waste their time staring at you.

        • Am I really such an egotist? Would you be comfortable showering and changing in front of an all-male highschool football team? Would it be egotistical of you to say that, yes, you’d have reservations about doing so? No doubt a solid majority of homosexuals would be as repulsed by my appearance as they would be of Quasimoto, but that doesn’t invalidate my point.

          Even allowing for the possibility that I’m simply crazy (always possible…some of the predicaments I get myself into in the name of “duty” are down right silly for any sane person to even consider), I’m not alone. Nobody that I’ve talked to (low triple digits across 3 continents) is comfortable with the idea of showering and changing with someone of the same sex that “may” be attracted to them sexually.

          • “Would you be comfortable showering and changing in front of an all-male highschool football team?”

            Ths analogy works because 1 in 4 men has been sexually assaulted by another man and would therefore have reason to be seriously uncofortable about being naked in front of a “whole team” of them. No wait, that isn’t true. I feel like there’s some other population of whom a quarter have been sexually assulated by men, thus completely invalidating this comparison. I feel like maybe I belong to it. It’s weird, who could it be?

            “Nobody that I’ve talked to (low triple digits across 3 continents) is comfortable with the idea of showering and changing with someone of the same sex that “may” be attracted to them sexually.”

            …You realise this is happening every day, right? And at least some of the people you talk to are probably gay themselves and know that agreeing with a bigot such as yourself is the only way to avoid being thrown out of their career based on who they are? I find you amusing, but your grip on reality saddens me. Have fun over there.

          • Many apologies for the belated reply. I was out of town on business, then had to rush home for a family emergency, and didn’t really have access to the internet.

            Sarcasm doesn’t carry over into text very well. You’ve hit the nail squarely on the head. Hell no you wouldn’t be an egotist for being uncomfortable under those circumstances. So why would I be? Particular if I knew that certain members of the aforementioned football team were homosexual? Would they find me irresistable? Doubtful. Do I want to find out? Not so much.

            As far as freedom of speech, it’s not against any rule or regulation to disagree. Not to mention that I’m not the kind of guy to flip out on someone that does. There’s no reason why someone, homo or not, would have to lie about their opinion on DADT, not while they’re in the middle of a bull session on the shop anyway.

      • lol, no, I’m not a demontor. I’m here because I want a debate. I’m tired of talking to people that agree with me. I already won the debate about whether or not the M16 is a national embarrasment, or a world class rifle (definitely the former), and I’m looking for a fresh start on another subject.
        I have my views, and I’m willing to respect yours, but I want to see if there is something I’ve overlooked that will cause me to change my position. I’m not some knee-jerk homophobe out for blood, I’ve never harrassed anyone based on their sexuality, I’m just not comfortable being required to live in extremely close quarters (ie, closer quarters than any roomates you’ve likely lived with)with someone that lives a lifetyle that I find repugnant.

        • what i don’t understand is that you’re not forced to be in the military. and you’re totally ok with keeping a minority down, with unequal rights simply because you’re uncomfortable. and i’m not sure, but maybe someone in your battalion or whatever finds your lifestyle repugnant and you know what? they fucking swallowed their pride and didn’t ask that you be kicked out and barred from the military because they are uncomfortable.

          • Nobody is saying they can’t do their thing, because, believe me, they do. The policy, in a nutshell, is as simple as this: “homosexuals can serve unless and untill they become a problem.” There’s one dude that’s “bi-curious” that’s still in…granted he got dropped to tool-room, and doesn’t seem to be going back to his workcenter any time soon. Another guy almost got sepped for DADT. He managed to beat the charge, but he’s ~6 months behind his peers because people are leery about being alone with him (owing more to harrassment charges he’s leveled at other guys more than any sexual tension).

            A lot of guys join up and quickly become dissatisfied with the lifestyle and start counting the days. Each and every one of them hears “you signed the motherfucking contract” at least once (I do my best, but occasionally one slips past me). My point is that, a gay man, knowing the policy and the ramifications, joined up anyway. He knew he’d have to live a double-life (and all that that implies), and he knew what the ramifications of being found out would be. It’s hard, in my opinion, to argue that the rules are unfair after you’ve already signed a contract to abide by them.

          • the thing, though is that it becomes a witch hunt. dadt was first put in place to ensure that homosexuals can serve, but if someone points a finger and evidence is found, then they are out. if someone doesn’t like someone for being gay because they find their lifestyle “repugnant” and evidence is found, then that gay person out. so how is that right? i don’t understand how you can justify such a policy because you and others are uncomfortable. i’m uncomfortable with you being on this site, but i guess you’re welcome here. even if i find your views repugnant.

          • The two guys I mentioned in passing earlier pretty much handed the information to the command. One guy was getting slow head in the barracks when his roomate came home, the guy put a personal on craigslist. Both times, when the dust settled, the old man came down and said, essentially, “I don’t have time for junior-varsity games. They’re here, deal with it. Anybody gives them any lip about what they may or may not have done, and you can just drop your chevrons off on my desk, you won’t be needing them anymore.” Moral of the story, nobody was looking for anything.

            It may surprise you, but in the civil sector, I’m a proponent of the government staying the hell out of my bedroom, and my life in general. I’m actually pretty militant on that point. If I want to snort coke off of a stripper’s backside while my wife lays into me with a pony crop whip and a bowling pin, it’s nobody’s damned business but my own. Likewise with whom I (or anybody else) chose to marry. I’m actually good with the idea of civil unions all around and letting the churches decide who gets “married” and who don’t. Or an analogous arrangment that creates a legally equal status for homosexual couples, if the other proves too difficult. All of which can happen outside my house and off my property.

            The point I’d like to make is that military service is a privilidge, not a right. If the DOD came down and said skinny white guys with tiny peckers and a real jonesing for fat chicks were detrimental to good order and discipline, I’d have to either go undercover or get out, but my rights would not have been violated.

          • so those two men were being careless but theres a lot of people who aren’t. theres a lot of people who are the victims, like this lady at this link:

            http://www.sldn.org/blog/archives/stories-from-the-frontlines-former-army-sgt.-tracey-l.-cooper-harris/

            i still don’t understand you. if its a privilege to not be fired for who you are then what the fuck.
            also, my tax dollars are funding a discriminatory institution, so um, no i can’t just walk away.

            good day sir.

          • Obviously the events she describes in that article aren’t even in the same ballpark as right. If she’d talked to her EO rep, their asses would have been in a much-deserved sling. It may or may not have cost her a career that she didn’t follow all the way to retirement anyway, but at least she wouldn’t have had to tolerate the abuse. I’m not sure what the statute of limitations are, but surely she could have sought some sort of legal redress (or dropped by their houses for an impromptu castration, whatever) after she’d decided to get out.

            In a normal job, firefighter, civil servant, FBI agent, ATF douchebag, whatever, you’re right, sexuality doesn’t even enter into the equation because in all of those instances those people go home to their own houses/apartments/hotels at night, and they enjoy a level of privacy unheard of in the military. But the fact is that in these kinds of environment, it serves as a distraction, and it serves to single out one individual from the group, thereby preventing his/her assimilation into that group.

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