Friday, April 08, 2011

House Armed Service Committee holds DADT repeal certification hearing, publishes video on YouTube (2 hrs)

The House Armed Services Committee hearings on the certification of the repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”, from April 7, 2011, appear on YouTube, 115 minutes in length.

Mr. Bartlett chaired. 

The general tone of the comments went something like this. “We all know that gays and lesbians serve in the military.  But the concern is the Law that requires us to discharge them if …”  As a whole, the tone of the service chiefs was pretty optimistic.

Generally, training is going smoothly. There is a small undercurrent of people who say they would want to leave, but it doesn’t sound significant. There was a comment that a small number of people from specialized units may have left.  But there was also a comment that more good people will serve.

One female member of the House insisted that the service chiefs did not have to certify the repeal, and asked about the right of chaplains not to perform gay marriages or preach doctrine they did not believe.

There was a discussion of the “lack of privacy”, particularly in the Marine Corps, the youngest of the services.  But I actually encountered this with college roommates back in 1961 at William and Mary (the civilian campus world has changed a lot since then; look at how Facebook got founded at Harvard).

There will be no provision to build separate barracks or personal facilities in the military.

There was a question as to whether LG personnel who had been discharged could return, and normal procedures would be followed to allow them to do so.

There was a comment that the repeal was passed in a “lame duck” session in December, whereas the “Democrat” Congress failed to pass the 2011 budget, leading to the threat of a shutdown this weekend that would delay military pay!

.

Here is the text of the letter from Gen. Casey. 

Speakers:

Majority Statements

·         Buck McKeon 
Chairman 
Full Committee 

Witness Panel 1

·         General Peter W Chiarelli 
Vice Chief of Staff 
U.S. Army
·         Admiral Gary Roughead, USN 
Chief of Naval Operations 
U. S. Navy
·         General James F. Amos, USMC 
Commandant 
U. S. Marine Corps
·         General Norton A. Schwartz, USAF 
Chief of Staff 
U. S. Air Force
The Washington Blade has a story by Chris Johnson on the hearings, dated April 8, here

The Metro Weekly has a story by Chris Geidner April 7, here


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