Another popular, common-sense, pro-equality measure ground to a standstill this afternoon as a unified minority of Republican Senators, joined by two Democrats, succeeded in filibustering a bill that included a repeal of the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy.
Let’s take a look at some of the arguments for and against a repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.
- 78% of Americans think gays and lesbians should be allowed to serve openly in the military.
- The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has said that ending DADT would be “the right thing to do.”
- The Commander of U.S. armed forces in Afghanistan has said “the time has come” to start moving on DADT repeal. Petraeus said about his own experience serving beside gays and lesbians:” I know, I served, in fact, in combat with individuals who were gay and who were lesbian in combat situations. Frankly, you know, over time you said, hey, how's this guy shooting or how is her analysis or what have you?”
- The Secretary of Defense “fully supports” the repeal effort.
- The majority of the House of Representatives has voted to nix the policy.
- Research from the RAND Corporation and the experience of countries that allow gays and lesbians to serve openly shows that the practice does not impede military readiness.
- The American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer warns that repealing DADT will result in the US being defended by "sexual perverts, sexual deviants.”
- The Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins argues that militaries that allow gay and lesbians to serve openly—such as Great Britain, Australia, and Israel– are “the ones that participate in parades, they don't fight wars to keep the nation and the world free.”
- Cliff Kincaid’s America's Survival warns that troops will be threatened with “disease-tainted gay blood”
- The conservative Center for Military Readiness argues for DADT with the results a biased and misleading poll.
So…whose arguments are Senate Republicans listening to?