Saturday, December 18, 2010

The end of “DADT” appears to be nigh

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“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”

After all these years of turmoil and struggle, of thousands of perfectly capable and honorable servicemembers being kicked out because of nothing remotely relevant to their military aptitudes, of constant protesting and blocking and bullshitting on the part of knuckle-dragging bigots and equally ceaseless campaign and electoral promises on the part of grandstanding politicians who never seem to really get anything done (and every so often actually go directly against their word), it seems that the legislated homophobic discrimination in the US Military that is “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is finally about to meet an end – for real this time. SFGate reports:

(12-18) 09:50 PST Washington - -- In a major victory for President Obama and gay rights activists, a measure to end the 17-year-old ban on gays and lesbians serving openly in the miliary won a bipartisan vote in the Senate today that paves the way for repealing the "don't ask, don't tell" policy.

The Senate approved the repeal bill on a 63-33 test vote, which assures that a final, landmark vote to end a tumultuous chapter in American civil rights history will happen as early as today and send the measure to Obama for enactment by year's end.

Pushed by Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Joe Leiberman, an independent from Connecticut, the legislation won more than the 60 votes needed to break a Republican filibuster.

On Wednesday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, pushed an identical repeal bill through the House by a vote of 250-175.

The ban had forced the dismissal of more than 13,500 openly gay and lesbian service members, including Arab linguists, medical personnel and combat soldiers, through the course of two ongoing wars.

As I write this, the final vote to bring in the guillotine on “DADT”’s scrawny neck will take place at 3 PM sharp on C-SPAN. I won’t be watching simply because watching deliberative bodies gives me brain aneurysms, but I’ll be the first to post as soon as I receive any info on the outcome. (Well, one of the first.)