January 11, 2011

CAPT Ben Tupper: THE CHANGE

CAPT Ben Tupper: THE CHANGE -
Benjamin Tupper is a long-time contributor to The Sandbox. His well-received first book was Greetings From Afghanistan: Send More Ammo. The following post is adapted from his recently-published second book, Dudes of War.

I hear a lot of talk about how allowing gays and lesbians to openly serve in the military is asking too much of our servicemembers. According to many opponents of repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, the challenge of dealing with open homosexuality is a burden too great for the American fighting man and woman to bear.

I chuckle when I hear this argument of concern for the welfare of currently-serving military members. I wonder why these same people were silent when we went to war without enough body armor, or came home to underfunded veterans hospitals and shortages in mental health care resources for PTSD.

As a current member of the military, and as someone who served as an Infantry front line leader in Afghanistan, I can quickly think of dozens of burdens far worse than the possible awkwardness of serving with openly gay servicemembers.
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