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DoD report: Military can handle repeal of DADT, groups respond
From News Releases, posted Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2010
2010-12-01

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Servicemembers Legal Defense Network Statement on just released Comprehensive Review Working Group ( CRWG ) Report:

"This exhaustive report is overwhelmingly positive and constructive. The Pentagon validated what repeal advocates and social scientists have been saying about open service for over a decade. Still, some initial resistance may come from one or more of the service chiefs — the very leaders who will be charged with implementing this change. Those chiefs will need to salute and lead in bringing about this needed change. Fortunately, the chiefs have already made it clear they will do precisely that if Congress acts. Now, it's up to the Senate to make repeal happen this year," said Aubrey Sarvis, Army veteran and executive director for Servicemembers Legal Defense Network.

ABOUT SLDN: SLDN was established in 1993 when "Don't Ask" originally passed. In addition to working on repeal, SLDN offers free, confidential legal services to those impacted by DADT; this year the organization received its 10,000th call for assistance to its legal hotline.

KEY CRWG REPORT POINTS:

When asked about the actual experience of serving in a unit with a co-worker who they believed was gay or lesbian, 92% stated that the unit's "ability to work together" was "very good," "good," or "neither good nor poor."

o 89% for those in ARMY combat arms units and 84% for those in MARINE combat arms units.

When asked about how having a service member in their immediate unit who said he or she is gay would affect the unit's ability to "work together to get the job done," 70% of Service members predicted it would have a positive, mixed, or no effect.

When asked "in your career, have you ever worked in a unit with a co-worker that you believed to be homosexual," 69% of Service members reported that they had.

In communications with gay and lesbian current and former service members, the CRWG repeatedly heard a patriotic desire to serve and defend the Nation, subject to the same rules as everyone else.

The CRWG is convinced that our military can do this, even during this time of war. They do not underestimate the challenges in implementing a change in the law, but neither should we underestimate the ability of our extraordinarily dedicated Service men and women to adapt to such change and continue to provide our Nation with the military capability to accomplish any mission.

The CRWG found "the risk of repeal of don't ask, don't tell to overall military effectiveness is low."

The CRWG believes this to be the "largest, most Comprehensive review of a personnel policy matter which the department of defense has ever undertaken."

Pentagon Working Group Report confirms no major impediments to open dervice, "Most comprehensive review… ever undertaken" shows end to military's gay ban comes with few hurdles to implementation

WASHINGTON — The Pentagon's Comprehensive Working Group studying how to implement repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" has found few hurdles to implementation of open service by gays and lesbians, according to their report released today. The news provides tremendous momentum for upcoming Senate action on repeal, said the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender ( LGBT ) civil rights organization.

"This issue has been studied for fifty years, including by the military itself, and the results from over twenty-two studies are uniform: open service does not harm effectiveness," said HRC President Joe Solmonese. "The small handful of Senators blocking repeal no longer have any fig leaves behind which to hide. The time for repeal is now."

A survey of troops — while not a referendum on repeal but rather a tool to gauge attitudes about repeal — showed that seventy percent of service members thought having an openly gay or lesbian colleague in their unit would have either a positive, mixed or no effect. For those who believe they have already worked with a gay or lesbian service member, ninety-two percent say their unit's ability to work together was very good, good or neither good nor poor.

"America's men and women in uniform are professionals who already serve with gays and lesbians and repeal will do nothing to change their dedication to protecting our nation," said Solmonese. "Senators who said they want to hear from military leaders and troops now have their answers. Repeal of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' will allow every qualified man and woman to serve without sacrificing the high standards that have made our military great."

Twenty-five nations allow open service by gays and lesbians and all of them have implemented repeal of their bans without major disruptions — including close allies such as the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and Israel. Further, a failure of Congress to act now will tie the hands of military leaders who have asked for the power to implement the changes that today's report lays out.

The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.

Pentagon report adds critical support for ending "Don't Ask, Don't Tell", ACLU urges Congress to take swift action to repeal discriminatory policy

WASHINGTON, DC — A report released by the Pentagon today found that a large majority of respondents to a survey of active-duty and reserve service members and their families say that ending the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy barring lesbian and gay service members from serving openly would not have an adverse effect on military operations. The House of Representatives has already passed a bill to repeal this unconstitutional policy, and President Obama and Defense Secretary Gates have both called for the policy to be repealed. A federal district court has already ruled that "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" is unconstitutional. The policy has been allowed to continue while that decision is appealed. The American Civil Liberties Union calls on the Senate to finally end this law by passing the National Defense Authorization Act.

Statement from Laura W. Murphy, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office:

"With the release of this report, Congress can no longer delay ending this discriminatory policy once and for all. For far too long, this policy has been an affront to our fundamental values of fairness and equality, and has compromised the effectiveness of our military. Our men and women in uniform deserve to serve their country with dignity. It is long past time for the Senate to ensure that this unfair and unconstitutional practice is finally brought to an end."

Statement from James Esseks, Director of the ACLU Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Project:

"It should be no surprise that allowing gay and lesbian people to serve openly in the military will have no detrimental effect on the armed forces. We know from court cases that the military suspends 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' investigations in order to send suspected gay service members to combat zones overseas, only to re-open the investigations when service members return from deployment. That stark fact highlights that the military doesn't agree with the very premise of the law — that openly gay service members would disrupt unit morale. It's time to repeal 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' and let these patriots serve their country."

For more information on the National Defense Authorization Act, please visit: www.aclu.org/ndaa

Pentagon report shows U.S. military van handle tepeal of DADT, vomprehensive teview dettles questions and paves ray for lame fuck sction on NDAA

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Servicemembers United, the nation's largest organization of gay and lesbian troops and veterans, today hailed the release of the final report of the Pentagon's Comprehensive Review Working Group on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

"This thorough and comprehensive report makes clear to lawmakers and the American people once and for all that the U.S. military is capable of handling the repeal of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.' The questions are now answered and the debate is now settled," said Alexander Nicholson, Executive Director of Servicemembers United and a former U.S. Army Human Intelligence Collector who was discharged under "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." "It's now up to the Senate to bring the defense authorization bill back to the floor, allow 10 to 20 amendments to be debated on each side, and get this bill passed. We have the votes now if the process is fair."

During the course of the comprehensive review, Servicemembers United met with the Working Group's co-chairs and staff several times and submitted numerous memoranda on a variety of topics for the Working Group's consideration. Servicemembers United also arranged for the Working Group's co-chairs and staff to meet with a group of 30 gay and lesbian veterans and another group of 15 gay and lesbian military partners during the course of the review.

For more information about Servicemembers United and "Don't Ask, Dont' Tell," please visit www.ServicemembersUnited.org . For the most comprehensive collection of polling data, discharge statistics, academic works, legislative and congressional material, and more, visit www.DADTArchive.org .

OutServe hails pentagon teport on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell, gay military underground network days teport "Ends the Controversy"

WASHINGTON, DC, November 29, 2010 — OutServe, the underground network of gay and lesbian actively serving military members, responded today to the release of the long-awaited Pentagon report on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

"This report definitely answers the question of the impact of DADT repeal on the military. Specifically, knowing a soldier is gay has no negative impact on readiness," said Jonathan Hopkins, former Army Captain and veteran of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. "We've known this for a long time.

Among military members who know they've served with someone gay, 92% said that repeal would have little or no negative effect on military readiness. 69% of servicemembers who responded to the survey said they served with someone they knew or suspected was gay.

"This study gets to the facts, and exposes the invented argument of 'unit cohesion' as a myth," said Hopkins. "Those who've served with gay or lesbian soldiers, Marines, or servicemembers of any stripe recognize that gay troops have — as the Pentagon report says — a 'patriotic desire to serve' as well as a 'desire to fit in, coexist, and succeed in the military environment.' "

"I don't want any special treatment. I just want them to take the knife out of my back so I can serve," said an anonymous gay Marine on the OutServe network.

Said actively serving co-director JD Smith: "What is important about this report is that it definitively shows that gay soldiers currently serving have a strong desire to fit in and serve their country patriotically. Sec. Gates has clearly called on the Senate to pass the repeal legislation, and our elected officials should heed him."

"The Pentagon has spoken. Now the only thing keeping this policy in place is politics," concluded Hopkins.

The Senate Armed Services Committee is holding hearings on the report later this week.

OutServe is a network of actively serving members of the United States Armed Services who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Transgender. The organization launched publicly on July 26, 2010. The organization is led by an active-duty member who goes by the pseudonym of JD Smith and civilian Co-Director Ty Walrod. For more information, go to www.outserve.org .

Military and civilian professors day yhat "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" debate is over, 30 scholars conclude that pprejudice is the only temaining tationale for gay ban

Today, the Palm Center issued a joint statement from 30 professors and scholars in response to the Pentagon's Comprehensive Working Group Report on gays in the military:

"The debate about the evidence is now officially over" according to current and former academics at the Army War College, Naval Academy, West Point, Air Force Academy, Naval Post Graduate School, Naval War College, Air Command and Staff College and National Defense University as well as civilian universities including Harvard, Yale and Princeton. They add: "The only remaining rationale for 'don't ask, don't tell' is prejudice."

The joint statement responds to the Pentagon's release of results from a nine-month review of the impact of repealing 'don't ask, don't tell'." The Senate Armed Services Committee will hold hearings on the report this week.

Commenting on forthcoming Senate deliberations, the scholars conclude that, "In light of the report's findings, this month's debate in Congress is about one thing and one thing only: Will prejudice continue to determine military policy or not?"

The full statement and list of signatories follows:

THE DEBATE IS OVER. THE ONLY QUESTION LEFT IS WHETHER PREJUDICE WILL PREVAIL

We write as scholars who have studied the military for decades. The release of the Pentagon's Comprehensive Working Group report on gays in the military echoes more than 20 studies, including studies by military researchers, all of which reach the same conclusion: allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly will not harm the military. Unsurprisingly, the new Pentagon study, which is based on exhaustive research, confirms that the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" poses little if any risk to the armed forces. We hope that our collective statement underscores that the debate about the evidence is now officially over, and that the only remaining rationale for "don't ask, don't tell" is prejudice. In light of the report's findings, this month's debate in Congress is about one thing and one thing only: will prejudice continue to determine military policy or not?

Signatories:

Professor John T. Ackerman, Air Command and Staff College*

Professor Frank J. Barrett, Naval Postgraduate School*

Lt. Col. Allen Bishop, USA ( ret. ) , former professor,

U.S. Military Academy at West Point*

Professor Donald Campbell, U.S. Military Academy at West Point*

Dr. Kathleen M. Campbell, U.S. Military Academy at West Point*

Professor Martin L. Cook, Admiral James Bond Stockdale Chair of Professional Military Ethics,

United States Naval War College*

Lt. Col. Edith A. Disler, USAF ( ret. ) , former professor,

U.S. Air Force Academy*

Professor Craig A. Foster, United States Air Force Academy*

Professor Gregory D. Foster, National Defense University*

Professor George R Lucas Jr, U.S. Naval Academy*

Professor Steven M. Samuels, United States Air Force Academy*

Professor Richard Schoonhoven, United States Military Academy at West Point*

Professor Aaron Belkin, San Francisco State University

Professor Margot Canaday, Princeton University

Professor Neta C. Crawford, Boston University

Professor Cynthia Enloe, Clark University

Eugene R. Fidell, Senior Research Scholar in Law and Florence Rogatz

Lecturer in Law, Yale Law School

Dr. Nathaniel Frank, Author, Adjunct Faculty, New York University

Professor Hugh Gusterson, George Mason University

Janet Halley, Royall Professor, Harvard Law School

Professor Gregory M. Herek, University of California, Davis

Professor Elizabeth L. Hillman University of California Hastings College of the Law

John D. Hutson, RADM, JAGC, USN ( ret. ) , President and Dean,

University of New Hampshire School of Law

Professor Janice H. Laurence, Temple University

Professor Catherine Lutz, Watson Institute, Brown University

Captain Lory Manning, USN ( ret ) , Director, Women in the Military Project,

Women's Research & Education Institute

Professor Diane H. Mazur, University of Florida

Professor George Reed, University of San Diego, former Director of Command and Leadership Studies, U.S. Army War College*

Professor Michael Sherry, Northwestern University

Professor David Vine, American University [ USA ]

Non-military institutional affiliations are listed for identification purposes only, and do not convey the institutions' positions.

*The views expressed by faculty at US Government Agencies are those of the individuals and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of their Service, the Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government.

The Palm Center is a think tank at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Since 1998, the Center has been a leader in commissioning and disseminating research in the areas of gender, sexuality, and the military. For more information, visit www.palmcenter.org .

See the full report at

www.defense.gov/home/features/2010/0610_gatesdadt/DADTReport_FINAL_20101130 ( secure-hires ) .pdf


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