michaelb93
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    • michaelb93

      Thank you, Chris, for your continued excellent reporting on this while gay media organs have been rather late cathing up. However, as a reporter, PLEASE stop simply quoting—without quotation marks—the CLAIMS of SLDN about what they’ve done/are doing. To parahrase Mark Twain, word matters, so the difference between talking about lightning and lightning bugs is huge. I trust I’m not alone in my understand of the implications of the word “pressure.” So, to assert that SLDN has been “HAS BEEN PUSHING the Pentagon to extend available benefits SINCE August 2011” is to accept facts not in evidence. YES, they simply wrote him a pleasant, detailed letter that month—and another one in January of last year, in fact—but NOTHING in them could REMOTELY be defined as “pressure” which implies a negative consequence for the subject if he/she doesn’t comply with one’s request. The strongest expressions in either letter are “urge” and “we are troubled.” In short, I know it remains incomprehensible heresy to most to suggest that SLDN has devolved into something less than even a tiny paper tiger—wheb it NEVER was an organization with the clout, e.g., of the Jewish Anti-Defamation League or the ACLU—or the willingness to back up their demands with direct action such as ACT UP or GetEQUAL—or even a willingness to MAKE DEMANDS period. But the conclusion of an objective examination of the facts is indisputable—made worse by their recent entirely false claim that they haved “WORKED WITH Panetta and his deputies OVER THE TWO YEARS SINCE the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” on the benefits issue. The only thing worse than a lie is a sloppy one—Panetta hasn’t BEEN SecDef for two years. Only time will tell if he—or his replacement—makes acceptable changes. But SLDN doesn’t deserve credit for even anonymous Pentagon sources even suggesting he might. Thank you.

    • michaelb93

      Certainly an interesting angle I’ve yet to see. But, it, as every other one before it, misses the REAL point: Hagel is NOT the central issue. And those who insist that Hagel hasn’t really evolved, and isn’t really The Gays Best New Friend this side of Jesus and Lassie are wasting their time as much as those who bleat that we have to “trust” anything the President wants. For no matter how often tireless Administration Shill Valerie Jarrett coos that “The President is fully committed to ensuring that all of our service members and military families are treated equally”—no matter how many times he claims it himself—INaction speaks louder than proverbial words. THE undisputed FACT is that he has REFUSED FOR TWO YEARS to order the Pentagon to do just that DESPITE having been urged to by HRC in January 2011, despite SLDN having REPEATEDLY done the same since February 2011. When the Commander-in-Chief didn’t order current liberal Democratic Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta to make it happen, WHY should we believe that he’ll require Hagel [again, regardless of whether or not HE’s changed] to do anything different? WHEN are our paid advocates—and our out representatives and straight allies in Congress—and LGBT Media—going to SERIOUSLY put pressure on the President to FULFILL this promise?  For would so many merely mew or remain mute entirley were he a White President refusing for TWO YEARS to use his powers to increase the equality for Black Americans with the stroke of a pen?

    • michaelb93

      Pentagon General Counsel Jeh Johnson is a liar simply dragging his feet on extending non-DOMA banned benefits to gay military couples because of his naked homophobia too many are too naive to see. At best, whatever good he’s been involved in was plainly because he was following orders when, an objective examination of his record, indicates that if it were left to him DADT would never have been repealed. For while he and his paid shills keep mewing about having to continue to study benefits issues, note that OVER TWO YEARS AGO, the “Report of the Comprehensive Review of the Issues Associated with a Repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”—for which HE was the chief author—stated on page 142: “[O]ur Terms of Reference required that we consider the issue of benefits for same-sex partners and the families of gay and lesbian Service members, in the event of repeal. …We studied the issue carefully, and no other policy recommendation came close to consuming as much time and effort.”  Note, too, he did not say this past June that HE was one of those Pentagon leaders “troubled” by ongoing inequities, while, revealingly, going out of his way to declare: “I do not consider myself an activist on the matter of gay men and women in America.” That amplified a December 2010 “New York Times” article which reported that “he did not consider his work on the [repeal] study as an assignment to advance civil rights,” and—echoing the homophobic pontifications of DADT coconspirator Colin Powell in 1992 and 1993 that being gay was only a “behavioral characteristic”—“Mr. Johnson says that discrimination based on race and sexual orientation are different—sexual orientation, he maintains, is ‘not a self-identifier’.” He is the homophobic fox in the five-sided henhouse, and the quicker he’s gone the closer both individual gay service members and gay military couples will come to being treating equitably.

    • michaelb93

      WHERE is the demand that the President and Commander-in-Chief finally clean up the mess he helped create despite the repeal of DADT? Individual LGB service members are still arbitrarily denied the protections against harassment and discrimination automatically given other minorities under the Military Equal Opportunity Program, and gay military couples continue to be arbitrarily denied benefits NOT banned by DOMA. Mr. Obama could erase this premeditated discrimination by recalcitrant bigots in the Pentagon with the proverbial stroke ofapen—which he was asked MORE THANAYEAR AGO to do.