Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Pentagon hosts its first gay pride event today

Today, Tuesday June 27, DOD hosts its first “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month Event” at the Pentagon

Department of Defense Counsel Jeh Johnson will be the keynote speaker at an event which will include a panel discussion “The Value of Open Service and Diversity”.

The official DOD “press advirosy” announcement is here.

Leon E. Panetta, Secretary of Defense, personally thanked LGBT servicemembers and DOD civilian employees, and mentioned DADT repeal.

Elizabeth Flock has a story in US News, (“Washington Whispers”), here

USCG Lt Commander Zac Mathews spoke about the event on CNN Tuesday morning.
CBS News has a YouTube video of Panetta’s remarks.

The mention of civilian employees is important.  After my college expulsion in 1961, getting a top secret security clearance became a big deal.  I actually served in the Army as a draftee (sheltered by my education) 1968-1970 but was transferred to Fort Eustis out of the Pentagon under bizarre circumstances in September 1968.  As a civilian employee of NAVCOSSACT in the Washington Navy Yard (1971-1972), I was interrogated about any risk of “blackmail” and the end result of my top secret security clearance investigation was ambiguous.  I left and went to “private industry”.  

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