Eideard

Dont’ ask, don’t tell is gone. Think that ended official bigotry against Gays in the military?

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Nakisha Hardy spent the first nine months of her marriage on a remote Army base in Afghanistan, a tour of duty punctuated by sporadic mortar blasts and constant e-mails to her spouse back home.

The strains of that separation lingered even after First Lt. Hardy returned to Fort Bragg in September. So she signed up for a military retreat to help soldiers and their husbands and wives cope with the pressures of deployments and relocations.

But less than 24 hours after arriving at the retreat, she and her spouse were told to leave. The military chaplains who organized the program last month said that the couple was making others uncomfortable. They said they had determined that under federal law the program could serve only heterosexual married couples.

Anyone surprised a biblethumper decided bigotry was more important than helping service personnel?

Lieutenant Hardy is a lesbian in a same-sex marriage who had hoped that the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in 2011 would allow her to fully participate in military life. But she and many other gay and bisexual service members say they continue to encounter a raft of rules and regulations barring them from receiving benefits and privileges routinely accorded to heterosexual service members…

Gay marriage is now legal in nine states and in Washington, D.C. But because same-sex marriages are not recognized under federal law, the spouses of gay service members are barred from receiving medical and dental insurance and surviving spouse benefits and are not allowed to receive treatment in military medical facilities. Spouses are also barred from receiving military identification cards, which provide access to many community activities and services on base, including movie theaters, day care centers, gyms and commissaries.

Gay service members who are married are not permitted to receive discounted housing that is routinely provided to heterosexual married couples.

Don’t waste too much time on the crap states’ rights excuses offered by politicians and pundits. The military can ignore that hogwash easy as pie whenever they honestly feel like doing so.

No – this is one more instance of professional bigots in the Pentagon and Congress quietly backing up the good old boys club that still won’t give up on their stupid ideology.

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Written by Ed Campbell

January 21, 2013 at 8:00 am

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