Shocking! The repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) and the resultant right of LGBT soldiers being able to openly serve resulted in….virtually no change at all in the lives of military soldiers!
Read more after the jump.
According to a new poll, conducted by the Military Times and reported today, the repeal of DADT has resulted in far less upheaval than originally projected.
What may surprise you is that many LGBT soldiers still choose to keep their sexual orientation private, though they now have the right to reveal it. Military Times reports that based on the 25 LGBT soldiers polled, "Only one [soldier] had come out of the closet at work since repeal. The rest either said their unit members knew about their orientation before repeal, or they continue to keep their orientation private."
You mean they’re not wearing rainbow pins on their lapel? Weird. (Not that we’d be opposed to it if they did! Could be cute!)
It seems that for some, this hesitancy to come out is based more on their desire not to rock the boat. A soldier and a mom, “Jenny,” tells Military Times, "It’s best that people not know, because when they do, you open yourself up to all sorts of scrutiny of your family and what your definition of family is. We have a child to raise."
It should be noted that Jenny, went so far as to marry a gay man in order to keep her lesbian partnership a secret, so her situation may be more complicated than most. Still, other LGBT soldiers like, James (who’s had the same partner for 30 years) maintain, according to the Times, that, “Although he believes many of his colleagues would be accepting, he fears being openly gay could make working with others needlessly difficult.”
Clearly there’s still progress to be made in order for the LGBT community to feel truly safe.
Straight service members were also polled, with a large majority (69 percent) noting that they had not been affected in any way by DADT’s repeal. This majority included 59 percent of those serving in a unit where a fellow soldier had come out.