A long-anticipated Pentagon study released today finds that the discriminatory Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy can be ended without harming military effectiveness. In addition, the study found that a full 70% of those currently serving in the armed forces believe that allowing gay and lesbian Americans to serve openly in the military will have a positive effect, a mixed effect, or no effect at all. 92% of those who reported having worked with a gay or lesbian service member said that the experience was good, very good, or had no impact.
Michael B. Keegan, President of People For the American Way, said:
“For years, the Right has fought to preserve the discriminatory, ineffective Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy, claiming that allowing gay and lesbian Americans to serve their country would put American troops in harm’s way. The Defense Department’s comprehensive study exposes this ugly, dishonest fear-mongering for what it is. The vast majority of U.S. troops do not feel threatened by serving alongside gays and lesbians, and our military leaders say repealing the policy won’t put national security at risk—in fact, the opposite is true. Allowing gay and lesbian service members to serve openly makes all of us safer.
“The arguments for keeping Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell have come up empty. It’s time for the Senate to listen to our troops, to the courts, to the majority of Americans, and to their own common sense, and end this failed experiment in discrimination once and for all.”