Letters to Holly

Monday, December 20

Don't Ask, Don't Have a Cow

We watched the Senate votes on Saturday. The final Don't Ask Don't Tell vote was originally scheduled to take place around noon before it was pushed back three hours to accommodate debate on the START Treaty. We tuned in just in time to see the DREAM Act, providing citizenship to illegal aliens who serve in the military, fail in the chamber. The DADT vote was a pleasant surprise, 65-31, and the president should sign it into law soon.

I heard the usual rhetoric about this on the drive home Friday -- DADT gives gays special rights, this will weaken the military, and it disrupts unit cohesion. When I hear the argument about rights in the military, I don't hear the obvious counter: When is bigotry upheld in the military? Soldiers can't veto their commander's orders on grounds of prejudice if they're paired with a Catholic or black or a woman. Why would they get to mumble about the gay soldier they're partnered with?. (Ignoring for the moment the old irrational notion that homosexuals have no criteria and will fuck everyone in their gender).  As George Will said Sunday:
WILL: The Marines are a small service in which every Marine is a rifleman, and their specialty is small-unit combat, and unit cohesion matters. With that said, the Marines have their orders from the commander-in-chief. You tell a Marine to take the hill, the hill will be taken, and therefore they're going to implement it.
There seems to be a mass assumption that allowing gays to serve openly means the military will place walk-in volunteers into war zones without boot camp or basic training of any kind. Anyone who signs up still has to cut muster before they're deployed. Whoever is in the war zone will be prepared and capable no matter who they dream about when they fluff up their pillow. And the rampant fears of sudden sexual harassment against straights suggests that the military won't be allowed to shut down anyone's unwanted advances. That's crap. Military discipline is still in effect. The only thing this law changes is automatic discharge for soldiers discovered to be gay. 

The deputy seems to have a small cold. We think we all three have the same nasal drip, and it's affecting his sleep patterns. He had a rough weekend but managed to sink back into his bedtime pattern last night. He and I had more time together than normal. Your Sister ran errands and finished Christmas craftwork while I watched him, and I took him to the store Sunday to give her a baby-free hour. I got frustrated with him; he was unsettled from the head cold and all our comforting tricks were failing. But I started to regard him as a miniature version of Your Sister (granted, as an outie instead of an innie), and that got me through. He seems to have gotten through the worst of it.

Picture of the Day
I've almost finished backing up my Christmas gifts.

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