In an interview with American Family Association (AFA) radio yesterday, Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) argued against repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT), arguing that basically, members of the U.S. military are too bigoted to be willing to fight and die for the “guy in the next foxhole” if that guy happens to be gay:
INHOFE: For those of us — and I’m one of them — who have gone through the military, gone through basic training, and you stop and think — it just doesn’t make any sense. Second of all, it’s just not working. You have women, men, then you have a third group to deal with, and they’re not equipped to do that.
And you know — you hear the stories all the time. A military guy — I happen to be Army, and Army and Marines always feel that when we’re out there, we’re not doing it for the flag or the country; we’re doing it for the guy in the next foxhole. And that would dramatically change that.
Inhofe shouldn’t assume that all members of the military are as homophobic as he is. A December 2006 survey of servicemembers who had served in Iraq or Afghanistan found that 73 percent of those polled were “comfortable with lesbians and gays.” The Servicemembers Legal Defense Network has reported that more than 500 U.S. soldiers are “out” to their colleagues and continue to serve. When Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Michael Mullen announced his personal belief that now is the time to repeal DADT, he cited the fact that he has served with gay comrades since 1968.
“I also believe that the great young men and women of our military can and would accommodate such a change,” he added, giving members of the military more credit than Inhofe did. “I never underestimate their ability to adapt.” (HT: Right Wing Watch)