/* Google Analytics Code asynchronous */

Monday, November 8, 2010

Commonsense Cowardice

It would come as a surprise to the majority of the military's servicemembers and to a large majority of Americans that the repeal of DADT is "controversial". Civilian and military polls now confirm this. 57 votes in the Senate confirm this.

Yet, we continue to hear 'commonsense wisdom', which really translates more like cowardice, lack of leadership.

One of the most common is "we are at war, now is no time to repeal DADT".

First, the opposite is true.

Leadership conquers confusion, focuses effort. There is nothing like the urgency of mission to bring clarity and focus to the task-at-hand, to separate the critical from the incidental, the urgent from the indulgent. It's precisely at times of intense effort, that clarity on an issue like DADT is plain: you don't care if the medic who just helped evac you is gay, you don't have time to worry about differences, you must focus on task, when the day is long and hot and everyone is depending on you. And, if you fall out of line, there is someone there, with a mission objective in hand, to nudge you back, firmly or otherwise.

Second, perhaps Senator Levin can review all that the military have done in our Afghan and Iraq adventures and explain the "commonsense" that they can't handle repeal of a policy, which is a shrug for the average GI.

Think about just half of what we've done in terms of logistics and projecting power halfway around the world, into hostile, volatile, and harsh areas. It really is incredible what our military has done. No, really, stop and make a list: food, people, equipment, fuel, training, drones, provincial reconstruction teams, solider-ambassadors ...

But, somehow, not expelling gay soldiers is going to bring that amazing machine to its knees or somehow be the task at the margin that it cannot handle.

Don't mistake 'commonsense' objections for the smokescreen cowardice they are.