In July of 1993, President Clinton announced the now infamous “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy of the military toward sexuality. This of course met with a few isolated cases of opposition. Clinton then sent American soldiers off to die in places like Kosovo, Somalia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Haiti to name only a few. In fact, Clinton sent Americans to die in battle more than any other peacetime president. But there was still no organized mass opposition to the policy he announced on homosexuals in the military.
Now it is 2005. Suddenly, certain members of our faculty and student body are clamoring for the removal of the military’s presence on our campus, citing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” as discriminatory. This makes me wonder: What is the true motivation of the people behind this campaign? “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was put into place 12 years ago – why are they waiting until now?
The answer is politics. The people involved in this shameful campaign are leftists. They are very much anti-Bush. They were so certain that most of the country would see things the way they do and vote him out of office. But Bush won, and now they are pissed off.
This is understandable – it’s okay to be pissed. But instead of constructive political action, they are taking out their anger on our men and women in uniform. This is wholly unacceptable and un-American. If they truly cared about changing the policy, they would have organized against it 12 years ago when their beloved Clinton was in office.
But let’s say that there is a 12-year backlog in queer activism – why are they harassing the military presence on campus? If they were serious about changing the policy, they would write to the Dept. of Defense or the president. Marching to the ROTC office will accomplish nothing because they lack the authority to change the policy of the Dept. of Defense. Their actions are analogous to harassing a parking services employee because you didn’t like your history grade.
The leftists are very lucky that they live in this country and enjoy the protection of its military. If they marched on military offices in places like China or North Korea with a set of demands, they’d likely have those demands met with machine gun fire.
Startlingly enough, I am with them on this issue; I think the policy should be changed. But their true motives and tactics are atrocious. The current effort to rid this campus of the military is nothing more than a thinly veiled attempt to play politics with the lives of our troops who selflessly fight to protect the rights of everyone.
Antony Mascovich is a junior business economics major.