Right now one of the bigger issues playing out on the political hometurf is the issue of ending the useless “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy in the military. The policy itself is in its death throes — from all the polls, it’s clear the American public doesn’t support it AND courts all over the country are finding constitutional issues with how the policy itself is executed.
So, you’d think it would be a NON-ISSUE for a President and his administration — one that was elected on a LGBT-friendly political platform and with their support — to go ahead and put this discriminatory policy out of its misery and end its enforcement.
Not exactly the case — the way this story has played out over the last few months makes the entire presidential administration look downright schizophrenic when it comes to DADT.
First a court rules against the military policy, and issues a stay against its enforcement. The president then says on the campaign trail that the policy will be “ended on [his] watch”, while meanwhile his Department of Justice challenges the court-imposed stay on DADT, so they can keep enforcing the policy on military service people?!
And now today the Secretary of Defense Robert Gates issued a directive that will make any enforcement of the policy contingent on the “personal approval” of his office first.
Can you see why I’m confused? We have a president who’s against the policy, but a justice department who’s seeking to keep it in place. Then there’s a Secretary of Defense who’s spoken out against the policy, and now looks like he’s attempting to make it even more difficult for it to be enforced on service men & women — SO WHY NOT JUST END IT ALREADY?
Lt. Choi articulates my frustrations well (and from a position where he’s completely entitled to feel such frustration):
Mr. President, justice delayed is justice denied.
EDIT: Valerie Jarrett responds to Lt. Choi (and I’m not persuaded by her argument):