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"Don't Ask Don't Tell" Turns Into "Don't Listen Don't Enforce"

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The Clinton Administration compromise policy known as "Don't Ask Don't Tell" is bad enough, given that it conflicts with the actual statute passed by Congress (which says that allowing homosexuals in the military "would create an unacceptable risk to the high standards of morale, good order and discipline, and unit cohesion"). But today, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates announced new regulations that leave the Pentagon tiptoeing even further around enforcement of the statutory law.

The new guidelines will sharply narrow the kind of evidence that can be used to begin an investigation of alleged homosexuality, while raising the rank of those authorized to initiate such investigations to general and admirals--who have no time to deal with disciplining individual service members.

The net effect will be to add a "Don't Listen, Don't Enforce" approach to the already unacceptably weak "Don't Ask Don't Tell" compromise. Unless and until Congress changes the law--which would be a serious mistake--the President and Secretary of Defense should live up to their oath to "faithfully execute" the law, instead of seeking out ways to evade it.

Over eighty percent of the world's countries--including the ten largest military forces in the world, ones designed to actually fight and win wars, not just march in parades--still exclude homosexuals from the ranks of the armed forces. National security, not political correctness, should determine our military personnel policies.


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