Knowledge casts out fear – DADT

The Rev. Tobias Stanislas Haller has posted a wonderful piece on his blog, In a Godward Direction, on “Don’t ask don’t tell.” Check it out:

(Don’t Ask and Don’t) Tell it to the Marines

Tobias Stanislas Haller in his blog, In a Godward direction

So the long-awaited survey of military personnel shows that for the most part there is little concern about gay and lesbian persons serving in the military without keeping their sexual orientation a secret. About seventy percent of those in the survey (and at over 100,000 it was a large sample!) said changing the present rules which require such military folk to conceal their secret identity, would either be positive or neutral. That leaves about thirty percent who are concerned about negative effects.

Perhaps the most interesting statistic, since this is about a “known known” that would come about by reversing DADT — that is, it is not about sexuality or sexual activity, but the knowledge that a gay or lesbian person is serving with you — reveals that of the 79,385 troops who believe they have already worked with a gay or lesbian colleague (that’s 69% of the total) 73,035 said the experience was positive or neutral — 92%. So almost all of the people who think they know either approve or don’t care. Perhaps we should call it “Don’t Care, Do Tell.”

Isn’t that almost always the way with things one fears? Knowledge casts out fear. Getting to know a gay or lesbian person, realizing they are good and effective soldiers, sailors, warriors and citizens is the most effective way to break down the irrational fear that goes by the name homophobia. If a dude saves your life, you won’t mind that he’s gay.

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