Oh sure. Don’t let us marry, but feel free to pass all the laws that “allow” us to serve in the military. No health benefits, no right to marry, but the politicians are happy to announce that they will allow us to die for our country, overseas, fighting a never-ending lie of a war.
What of all the gay servicemen and women who have been dishonorably discharged? Do they get their pensions, benefits, health insurance reinstated? Will they be compensated for the inconvenience they suffered? Will same-sex partners of dead Marines now be awarded their pensions and social security benefits?
And if those in power deign to extend such courtesies to the gays in the military, how soon before civilian homos demand similar treatment? What will happen then? Just how long can the conservative whack pots hold off the fight for marriage equality if the bleeding hearts give gays the right to serve and die for America?
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was the best Clinton could do during the 90s. The gays were still a fairly quiet and creative bunch, reeling from the AIDS epidemic and not quite ready for domestic bliss. Then, before Ellen’s revelatory television show and Melissa’s coming out at Clinton’s Inaugural ball, it was a victory to just serve quietly, proudly, and without harassment.
No more. Out Loud Proud doesn’t have to wait for Gay Pride Month or the accompanying parade. Out Loud Proud got so far out, so darn loud, and so glaringly proud that we’ve begun to be taken for granted. Doesn’t every child have at least one biracial friend with two mommies? What suburban street is complete without the requisite gay and/or lesbian homeowning duo?
We are almost regular folk. Now, if only we could get married before we ship off to war.
(and by we, I mean gays and lesbians in general: soldiers, teachers, carpenters, priests, executives, architects, bankers, lawyers, doctors, computer geeks, blah blah blah. My we is a Royal We).
(I am not, nor have I ever desired to be, in the military. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.)