"Don't ask, Don't Tell" repeal certified by President Obama

Ravage

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http://www.soc.mil/UNS/Releases/2011/July/110725-01.html

WASHINGTON D.C. (Courtesy of the Army News Service, July 25, 2011) - Based on recommendations from military leaders, President Barack Obama has certified to Congress that the U.S. armed forces are prepared for repeal of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law.

There is a 60-day waiting period before the repeal goes into effect, so the law will officially come off the books Sept. 20, 2011. After that date, gay servicemembers can be open about their sexual orientation.

The president signed the certification and delivered it to Congress today.

Congress passed the repeal law in December. The legislation gave the military time to prepare the force and said repeal would happen only after the president, the defense secretary and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff certified the force as ready for repeal.

The Defense Department chartered a repeal implementation team to coordinate the necessary changes to policy and regulations, and to provide education and training to servicemembers. The team worked to ensure the smoothest possible transition for the U.S. military to accommodate and implement this important and necessary change, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta said.

“Today, as a result of strong leadership and proactive education throughout the force, we can take the next step in this process,” the secretary said. “The president, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and I have certified that the implementation of repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is consistent with the standards of military readiness, military effectiveness, unit cohesion and recruiting and retention of the armed forces.”

Panetta said he believes the repeal is essential to the effectiveness of our all-volunteer force.

“All men and women who serve this nation in uniform -- no matter their race, color, creed, religion or sexual orientation -- do so with great dignity, bravery, and dedication,” he said in a written statement on certification.

Panetta pledged to support a military free from personal, social or institutional barriers that prevent servicemembers from rising to the highest level of responsibility that their talents and capabilities warrant.

“They put their lives on the line for America, and that’s what really matters,” he said. “Thanks to the professionalism and leadership of the U.S. military, we are closer to achieving the goal that is at the foundation of America -- equality and dignity for all.”

The services put together training courses for the force and more than 1.9 million servicemembers have now received that training. DoD and service officials also looked at regulatory and legal changes that repeal entailed.

“I am comfortable that we have used the findings of the Comprehensive Review Working Group to mitigate areas of concern, and that we have developed the policy and regulations necessary for implementation -- consistent with standards of military readiness, military effectiveness, unit cohesion and recruiting and retention,” Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in a written statement.

Certification is not the end of the road. The department, the services and the combatant commands must work “to train the remainder of the joint force, to monitor our performance as we do so, and to adjust policy where and when needed,” Mullen said.

The “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law went into effect in 1993. It allowed gay and lesbian personnel to serve in the military as long as they were not open about their sexual orientation.

On Feb. 2, 2010, Mullen testified to that Senate Armed Services Committee that he believed it was time to repeal the law.

“It is my personal belief that allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly would be the right thing to do,” Mullen told the senators. “No matter how I look at the issue, I cannot escape being troubled by the fact that we have in place a policy which forces young men and women to lie about who they are in order to defend their fellow citizens. For me, personally, it comes down to integrity -- theirs as individuals and ours as an institution.”

Mullen said he believes Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines can handle the changes.

“My confidence in our ability to accomplish this work rests primarily on the fact that our people are capable, well-led and thoroughly professional,” he said in his written statement today. “I have never served with finer men and women. They will, I am certain, carry out repeal and continue to serve this country with the same high standards and dignity that have defined the U.S. military throughout our history.”
 

CDG

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Well, I'm just assuming they mean the literall definition of 'cohabitant', so I'm basically marking 'yes' for everyone because they all live with someone....haha

Lol... "Goddamn Bill, this goon175 character sure knows how to get the gays to sign that dotted line. Every recruit he's put in in the last 2 months has been living with their partner."
 

Salt USMC

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I remember hearing a ton of people saying that they would get out/retire if DADT were ever repealed, and really I thought they were full of shit. So with that said, I'd like to see just how many people actually got out because of it! I have no idea how they would actually go about conducting this study, but it would be interesting to find out.
 

Brooklynben

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I remember hearing a ton of people saying that they would get out/retire if DADT were ever repealed, and really I thought they were full of shit. So with that said, I'd like to see just how many people actually got out because of it! I have no idea how they would actually go about conducting this study, but it would be interesting to find out.
I doubt that we will ever see that statistic because of both the difficulty in accurately accounting the cases and because doing so would be counter to the prevailing political correctness.

On the other side of this issue; I've been told a number of previous candidates have used the 'gay card' to bail on their service commitment after they failed their Special Ops courses.
 

Marauder06

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I remember hearing a ton of people saying that they would get out/retire if DADT were ever repealed, and really I thought they were full of shit. So with that said, I'd like to see just how many people actually got out because of it! I have no idea how they would actually go about conducting this study, but it would be interesting to find out.

I don't know how you'd establish what impact, if any, the repeal has had on retention or recruitment. It's especially hard to prove why something "didn't" happen.

I can't think of a single thing in our nation's history that has caused large numbers of servicemembers to bail, other than ten years of persistent conflict.
 

CDG

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From the article: “I don’t think I need to be focused on that," Stripes quoted Smith as saying. "What is relevant is upholding Army values and the responsibility this carries.”

If this was really her concern, she wouldn't have felt the need to make an announcement about it. If you don't want to be focused on that, don't announce it to the media.
 

Chopstick

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LOL..I like this:
Smith's spouse is Tracey Hepner, director of operations for the Military Partners and Families Coaliton, an advocacy and support organization for LGBT members of the military.
 
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