Sunday, July 18, 2010

DADT and the Conscientious Objectors - A True Lesson in Bigotry

Well, as the title to this post shows, I am clearly a little riled up by this. The New York Times just ran an article about the possibility of "Conscientious Objectors" with the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell. Aka. There exist some within the military who want to not serve anymore because of the sex obsessed gay person in the bunk next to them. Yea.


 Ms. McNeil got a hot-line call that raised a new issue: the caller said he considered homosexuality an abomination and wanted to be a conscientious objector because he could not serve in the military alongside gay soldiers.
“I told him I wasn’t trying to criticize, but he was already serving with gays, since there’s lots of gays in the military now,” said Ms. McNeil, the executive director of the Center on Conscience & War, a nonprofit group that supports conscientious objectors. “He said, ‘Yes, but now if they come out, they can be forced out. But if homosexuality is actually allowed, I will be housed with somebody who’s sexually attracted to me.’ ”
This my friends is the irony of these "soldiers" position. They somehow think that the military is, in some ethereal way, different than normal society. Does the soldier truly think that he will be spared the influence of the evil gay people in the locker room at his local YMCA, or the gazes of the gay man at his new, non-military place of employment, or how about when he is walking down the street? Is this "soldier" going to exist in a bubble so that he is protected from the outside world of those who are not like him?


Now some of you many have noticed that I keep putting the word "soldier" in quotation marks. This is very very purposeful. You see, I have a deep respect for the military and its purpose, and though I might not agree with everything that the military does, I respect the sacrifices of the individual soldiers. Yet for those "soldiers" who somehow claim that they no longer can defend my freedom, because someone around them is exercising their right to be who they are, deserves non of my respect. It is shown by his actions that he did not enter the military for the right reason. Because for someone who entered the military and actually wanted to perpetuate the American dream of freedom and liberty, he would do so no matter what. He would not only do so as long as the military conformed to his ideals. Any true soldier will recognize that he exists to protect even the freedom of those he disagrees with. 


Not only is the above "soldier" not living in the real world, he is also extremely insecure; because of both his own sexual projections, as well as his lack of faith in his own sexuality. The last phrase of the "soldier" was this - "But if homosexuality is actually allowed, I will be housed with somebody who’s sexually attracted to me.". Oh the Horror!!! But seriously, this shows a very deep problem. It allows up to see the "soldiers" sexual projections. You see, when the "soldier" voiced his fear to Ms. McNiel, he took a very victim like tone. HE would be victimized by another man "checking him out". How does he know this? Because he himself, albeit to women, agressvily and sexually projects himself on them. Because of this projection, he assumes that all men who are gay and are sexually attracted to him will also "victimize" him; the same way that he victimizes the women that he comes into context with. This my friends, is the fallacy of the homophobic "soldier". He is actually not "homophobic" per say, instead he is afraid that he will be exploited the same way that he exploits others if he is on the receiving end of sexual attention. 


The "soldier" is not only insecure because of his projection, but he is also insecure in his own sexuality. Lets me use myself as an example. I have been "sexually checked out" by women, but does this impact me at all? No, as a gay man who is very secure in his sexuality, it does not bother me that a woman might check me out. I'm ambivalent; they are not going to change anything, as hard as they may try. The "soldier" on the other hand, because of his fear that the gay man is going to check him out or try to sexually assault him, is doubting his own sexuality. If a gay man does try something with him, does he not have the self-control to say no? In his mind, he obviously does not. 


Even with the stupidity of the "soldiers" insecurities, the chances of a "gay rape" or "gay assault" happening are very low. Why? Because, even if something did happen when DADT is repealed, the perpetrator would be brought up for military discipline. The 'soldier" does not have to fear being sexually assaulted by the man in the next bunk, because if he was, that man would be out of the force in no time. Sexual exploitation, whether it be heterosexual or homosexual, is not tolerated in the military. 


Now some of you many have noticed that while writing, I keep putting the word "soldier" in quotation marks. This is very, very purposeful. You see, I have a very deep respect for the military and its purpose. Though I might not agree with everything that the military does, I do very much respect the sacrifices of the individual soldiers. Yet for those "soldiers" who somehow claim that they no longer can defend my freedom, because someone around them is exercising their right to be who they are, deserves none of my respect. It is shown by his actions that he did not enter the military for the right reason. For someone who entered the military and was truly fighting for the American dream of freedom and liberty, he would do so no matter what. He would not only do so as long as the military conformed to his  version of what he deems acceptable. Any true soldier will recognize that he exists to protect even the freedom of those he disagrees with. For our gay and lesbian women in uniform currently, the fact that they have fought for our freedom while also being subjected to the cruelty of Don't Ask Don't Tell, shows that they are truly fighting for the right reasons. 

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