Re: “Retain ‘don’t ask, don’t tell'” (letter, 9-22).
I was disappointed to see this defense of “don’t ask, don’t tell.” While the writer believes that the policy works, the facts point to the contrary.
Since the policy was enacted in 1993, more than 13,000 members of the military have been discharged for their sexuality alone. When our military is stretched thin in two wars, I don’t think such a policy is working.
But most startling is the low estimation of our military that the writer exhibits. His strongest concern is for how any change in policy will further burden our junior officers and noncommissioned officers. Put simply, this assumes that our soldiers cannot handle being around gays and lesbians, and so the addition of gay soldiers will disrupt the military unit.
That concern is misplaced. I would submit that the professional training of the world’s finest military can rise above something most of us experience on a daily basis — interactions with gays. Around the world, 25 countries allow gays and lesbians to serve openly. If their men and women can handle the challenge, I do not know what is to stop ours.