History is being made once again in the post-DADT world. After the jump, read about one military dominated college campus and the students (and soon-to-be military officers!) that are creating a space for LGBT people and their allies.
One of the lingering questions on many people's minds when thinking about the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" was how it would translate on college campuses among ROTCs. In short, it seems like the LGBT cadets are starting to break open the closet doors, in true soldier fashion.
Josh Fontanez, the Norwich University senior and Corps of Cadets trainee who will commission in the Army this May, is president of the Norwich University LGBTQA Club. Fontanez had been working to create the group since last Spring while DADT was still in place. The groundwork that was laid, has enabled him to launch the group visibly this Fall and so far they have "drawn a steady 20 or so gay and straight students, staff and faculty members, and the number is slowly growing," says USAToday.
At the meetings and in an online discussion board, students talk about their experiences and work with other local groups to plan events and educate students about LGBT issues.
M.E. Kabay is the group's faculty adviser and a vehement supporter of gay rights. He has been at Norwich for 11 years and has never hidden his views, but for students in the age of DADT, sharing their beliefs wasn't so black and white.
Obviously many current and former students at military academies were forced or felt they had to lead double lives. They feared that openly showing support could lead to suspicion and eventual discharge.
Legally that has changed, and it's only a matter of time before it changes socially, for good.
Hopefully more college cadets have the courage to follow in Fontanez footsteps. Meanwhile, we will be in our offices lamenting the fact that we missed the post-DADT college ROTC era by a slight 12 two years.
Read the full article at USAToday.