Having been deployed to overseas locations a few times there are some questions I have to ask in the whole movement to eliminate the congressional ban on homosexual service.
Yes, it is a congressional ban. Don’t ask, Don’t tell was the military’s way of complying with an order from the President to find a policy which would allow homosexuals to serve, even though Congress wrote a law which he signed saying they couldn’t. The best the military could come up with was DADT, a compromise between not actively enforcing a law, but not just ignoring it either.
For those who doubt that I refer you to Public Law 103-160, Section 654, Title 10. You can read it here. In short Congress, and the President decided a few things.
- There is no inherent right to serve in the military.
- The military lives under very different conditions when performing their mission
- US citizens have a culture which may be similar to other nations but which is unique and affects how we live and work
- When those three things are taken into consideration homosexual inclusion in the military was incompatible with best ensuring a well-disciplined and cohesive unit capable of winning wars when so employed.
Now, people can claim those statements are inaccurate, but 1 and 2 are simply facts. The only question is does three, when applied to the other two, make 4 true?
So here is a current situation: The military forbids having shared showers or sleeping quarters for male and female members who are not married to one another. If the military was to allow unmarried Soldiers to official live with one another they cannot force a female soldier to share quarters with a male soldier. This would very easily run afoul of a hostile workplace environment and subject the offending Commander to a charge they have violated the sexual harassment rules of the military. And I will state rightfully so.
Now, where do we bunk the homosexuals?
Lets assume an openly homosexual male can you bunk them with a: heterosexual male, homosexual male, heterosexual female, or homosexual female and not run afoul of hostile workplace? Come on, hands up, tell me how you will accommodate open homosexuality and not offending people. How will you force people of the same gender to live together if one is a known homosexual and the other feels this is creating a hostile workplace, much as a female could say if they were forced to live with a male. We’ve only had 20+ years of telling the military it is impact over intent when it comes to sexual harassment.
So good people out there, tell me your fix.
The fake-out is to run to the “no one cares in combat” bullshit. But this isn’t combat I’m asking about. This is open-bay living during Basic Training, rooms in a garrison environment before deployment, semi-private shower facilities both stateside and deployed.
You know, where Soldiers have spent the vast majority of the last 20 years. I know, I’m one of them.
So long as the military (and by extension the government) has DADT they can very honestly claim clean hands. They didn’t know the person was gay, and if they had they would have prevented the issue by discharging them. But if that goes away, well fuck, I guess the tax payers don’t mind building brand new private apartments for every single lower enlisted Soldier. And of course paying for Apartments for them until those facilities are built right?
Or are we just going to go all in. Full on co-ed. Females, get ready to start sharing bunk beds with males.
There is another solution though. Just don’t allow sexual harassment complaints anymore. Some have argued there is a right to military service, but can such a right be compatible with a right to be free of feeling uncomfortable due to sex/sexual attraction? We could exempt the military from complying with those laws if there is no way to comply in making sure we protect this right and live up to the laws of sexual harassment, and constitutional rights trump statutory laws.
Yeah, I don’t think that has a snowball’s chance either. So, leave a comment, tell me your solution to this dilemma, I just hope your solutions aren’t that we shouldn’t listen to the heartfelt complaints of gender discrimination coming from a class of people based on their sexuality.