Tolerance is the Law

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In the past few years, many subjects have been controversial. In the present, gay rights movements have come into the spotlight. Though the most commonly discussed issue is marriage; it isn’t the only problem. We need to remember to consider other situations in which there is unjust treatment. One of these situations is homosexuality in the military.

For a period, gays were not allowed to join the military at all. Sexuality was question upon entry to the armed forces. If an applicant answered yes to homosexual tendencies, they were denied employment. If a soldier lied to be accepted, and was later revealed as gay, the person in question could be discharged. The nation became slightly more accepting when the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy was applied. From 1993 to the present, service members were not questioned about their sexuality, however it was revealed and unaccepted; they could still be dismissed from service.

Just this year, open homosexuality has been legally accepted by the United States armed forces. Although the law is now accepting, all other soldiers are not. The concept of homosexuality is uncomfortable for many people in an environment like the military. Living quarters are defined by gender to avoid sexual encounters. Although the discomforts may seem rational, many gays were already serving before laws changed, and there weren’t problems before. Why should we expect conflict now?

The ban of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy is a controversial change. Though the law is now approving of gay soldiers, colleagues may not be. Though acceptance is appreciated, it isn’t necessary. Soldiers are patriotic, faithful people, and will continue to be so regardless of the sexual orientation of their fellow service members. Full embracement can’t be forced; tolerance is the law.





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