Military Discharging Much Needed Gay Linguists

The Department of Defense is discharging linguists, including many who speak Arabic, because they are homosexuals. The Washington Post reports that 37 linguists have been discharged from the Defense Language Institute in just the past two years. The Post report comes at the ten year anniversary of the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy signed into law by President Clinton in 1993. The Post went on to say that 10,000 soldiers have been dismissed in the past ten years due to the policy.

Opponents of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law argue that the military should not be discharging Arabic language linguists just because they are homosexuals during a time when they are needed in Iraq and the war on terrorism. “The biggest concern with the Arabic linguists’ story is not just how does this impact the gay and lesbian service members, but how does this impact national security?” Sharra Greer, Director of Law and Policy at the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, told the Post. “We’re discharging people in jobs we have shortfalls in, and yet we’re willing to fire people simply because of their sexual orientation? Does that make sense?”

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Washington Post 12/3/03 & 11/30/03

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