By David Mixner-
Yesterday right after lunch I received a call from my buddy Dan Choi. Taking advantage of courageous Judge Virginia Phillips decision to overturn DADT and the Pentagon's directive to allow LGBT to conditionally enlist, Dan was going to attempt to enlist in the Marines. He asked if I could be there to support him. With some trepidation, I agreed to hobble over to the Times Square Recruitment office and stand in support.
Of course, I wanted to look good since my momma taught me if you have something important to do then dress importantly! By the time I arrived there was a huge crowd and a media circus so I didn't get to see Dan personally. In order to congratulate him on his re-enlistment I would have had to push my way through the crowd and be disrespectful to others.
Now my trepidation was because Secretary of Defense Gates had made very clear publicly that total chaos would take place in the military if the court decision was allowed to stand. The President added his voice saying that if we didn't follow a very clear process that our military could be jeopardy. Being an American I didn't take lightly the word of the President and Secretary of 'Defense and I was concerned what might happen when Dan signed the papers. Our nation is at war and we can't be expected to take actions that would create chaos in the military.
Then the word filtered back that Dan was rejected by the Marines for being too old (Note to self: Be sure to give Dan a hard time about this one!). Busting out laughing at the irony of it all, I quickly composed myself since I knew the country was not out of danger yet. Finally someone said that Dan had joined the Army! Looking around with panic in my eyes I expected to see buildings crumble and traffic come to a total halt with this devastating news for our beloved country. Nothing was happening and the world seem to be perfectly normal.
Suddenly I remembered that our President and Secretary of Defense were talking about the military and I was looking at civilians. How damn stupid of me! Taking the quickest route home to see if Armageddon had hit our military, I dashed upstairs and turned on MSNBC. There were no reports of soldiers enmass refusing to fight or laying down their weapons in protest about Dan wanting to serve his country. The news didn't scream about Generals resigning in protest. From what I could tell from the news, it was just another day in the military - worrying about their families, wanting better benefits and hoping to get home alive from Afghanistan.
The Commander-in-Chief has scared me for no reason. The world was just fine. So why was it necessary for them to seek an immediate order from the Appeals Court to stop people like Dan who just wanted to serve their country? If they are successful in stopping Judge Phillips' decision and they don't pass a repeal in the Lame Duck Congress then there can be zero doubt who cost the repeal of DADT. That simply lies at the President's door.
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