Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less



MILITARY: Gays openly serve – and all is well

This time last year, there were dire predictions about what would happen if Congress repealed “don’t ask, don’t tell” – that it would disrupt unit cohesion, hurt recruiting and ultimately threaten our national security. My favorite (from retired generals): 500,000 troops would quit, and the military would “break.”

One year after the repeal of DADT, the only news is no news. The branches have hit their recruiting targets, units remain intact, our nation’s security is sound. A UCLA survey of active- duty troops found improvements in quality of life and morale.

The military did not break and shows no sign

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MILITARY: DADT repeal might improve unit cohesion

Re: articles on the repeal of “Don’t ask, don’t tell” the war crimes trial of Stryker soldiers (TNT, 12-19).

These articles, which shared the front page, reflect the perfect symmetry for those that espouse “unit cohesion”.

There’s the type of unit cohesion where you trust your fellow soldier to protect you with his life and then the kind where he’ll keep his mouth shut regardless of what atrocities were committed.

In the Stryker unit, three soldiers would not go along with the murder of innocent Iraqi civilians; they eventually broke that trust and told higher ups.

In March of

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GAYS IN MILITARY: In Vietnam era, Army made it work

There have been several responses lately to the challenge from one letter writer for the Marines to “man up” and drop their resistance to the don’t ask, don’t tell repeal. These responses challenge the right of anyone not a Marine now or then to state their views.

I don’t qualify either. I was merely an Army draftee, serving during the Vietnam era. But the Army then didn’t seem to have a problem with homosexuality.

I was morning report clerk for a headquarters infantry company in Germany in 1970-71. I typed up Article 32 charges for sodomy, pressed by German nationals

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POLITICS: All should be able to live openly

Re: Don’t ask, don’t tell.

The Puritans risked their lives to come to America to practice their faith openly. There were other times and places in our “civilized” societies where individuals could not be openly Christian, Catholic, Jewish, German, Irish or Japanese (to name a few) out of fear for their lives or livelihood.

Light-skinned individuals of African descent felt the necessity to hide that ancestry. Women hid their femininity to obtain employment or education. Even St. Peter, when asked, was afraid to tell that he knew Christ. Ellis Island records are full of names anglicized to hide ethnic origins.

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MILITARY: ‘Don’t ask’ a flawed concept from the start

As a 20-year Army officer, I applaud the decision to overturn the great absurdity of “don’t ask, don’t tell.” The whole concept was a silly compromise to reality in the first place.

The opposition to gays in the service was always that homosexuality would be detrimental to good order, discipline and morale. However the basic concept of DADT was to acknowledge that homosexuals could, in fact, serve and function well in the armed forces (and exist in similar numbers to those in civilian pursuits) but only so long as they did not “reveal” their sexual orientation.

Quite obviously, that would

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MILITARY: Close quarters a problem with gays

A recent opinion poll finds that more than 70 percent of civilians want homosexuals to serve openly in the U.S. military. Congress just approved an initial bill to end the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.

Civilians and Congress don’t have a clue what it’s like to serve in the military. Having served in the military for more than 21 years, I have firsthand experience with gays in the military. Living conditions are the primary reason why morale will and has been degraded due to gays.

Case in point: Stationed in tents for two months, we had open-tent showers. About 15

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MILITARY: Ignorance of military success factors

Is there anything as tiresome as those who ceaselessly pound their chests for the “freedom” for gays in the military? Those who are least likely to ever put themselves on the line for their country are, of course, the loudest in their trendy “wisdom.”

In combat, there is no greater intimacy than the terror of possible imminent death or disabling. In that environment, it is critical that soldiers have faith in the trustworthiness of their peers. Doubts of motivations, integrity and honesty tear apart unit cohesiveness. You NEED the greatest macho ethos to make a military move forward successfully.

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MILITARY: Don’t repeal ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’

Re: “Ending ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ will be worth the wait” (editorial, 5-26).

History and common sense have proved for more than 200 years that open homosexuality destabilizes the military and weakens military readiness. The military’s mission is to keep America safe first and foremost. The repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell” will severely compromise our military’s mission to keep America safe.

A strong military has strong unit cohesion, order, discipline and morale. The push to repeal “don’t ask, don’t tell” is nothing more than a political charade that insults the military, compromises our national security and shows contempt for

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