Don't ask, don't tell (DADT) is the term commonly used for the policy restricting the United States military from efforts to discover or reveal closeted gay, lesbian, and bisexual servicemembers or applicants, while barring those who are openly gay, lesbian, or bisexual from military service. The restrictions are mandated by federal law Pub.L. 103-160 (10 U.S.C. § 654). The policy prohibits people who "demonstrate a propensity or intent to engage in homosexual acts" from serving in the armed forces of the United States, because their presence "would create an unacceptable risk to the high standards of morale, good order and discipline, and unit cohesion that are the essence of military capability." (10 U.S.C. § 654(b)) The act prohibits any homosexual or bisexual person from disclosing his or her sexual orientation or from speaking about any homosexual relationships, including marriages or other familial attributes, while serving in the United States armed forces. The act specifies that service members who disclose they are homosexual or engage in homosexual conduct shall be separated (discharged) except when a service member's conduct was "for the purpose of avoiding or terminating military service" or when it "would not be in the best interest of the armed forces" (10 U.S.C. § 654(e)).
As it exists, DADT specifies that the "don't ask" part of the policy indicates that superiors should not initiate investigation of a service member's orientation in the absence of disallowed behaviors, though credible and articulable evidence of homosexual behavior may cause an investigation. Violations of this aspect through unauthorized investigations and harassment of suspected servicemen and women resulted in the policy's current formulation as "don't ask, don't tell, don't pursue, don't harass."
Efforts to repeal the policy, in effect since 1993, have increased since the election of President Barack Obama, who advocated a full repeal during his election campaign. In 2010 the House of Representatives passed a bill that would repeal the relevant sections of the law, but this measure was stalled in the Senate.
In the autumn of 2010, a federal district court judge declared the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy unconstitutional and issued an injunction prohibiting the Department of Defense from enforcing or complying with the policy. The appellate court stayed the injunction pending appeal; thus Don't Ask, Don't Tell remains in effect. On November 12, the US Supreme Court declined to overturn the stay.
Public opinion polls have been widely varied in their results. A national poll conducted in May 2005 by the Boston Globe showed 79% of participants don't oppose openly gay people from serving in the military. In a 2008 Washington Post–ABC News poll, 75% of Americans – including 80% of Democrats, 75% of independents, and 64% of Republicans – said that openly gay people should be allowed to serve in the military.
April 2009 CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll showed that 48% of Americans approved of the DADT policy, 8% believed that the policy was too lenient on gays, while 37% believed that the policy was too harsh.
February 2010 Quinnipiac University national poll shows 57% of American voters favor gays serving openly, compared to 36% opposed, and 66% say the current policy of not allowing openly gay personnel to serve is discrimination, opposed to 31% who see no discrimination. A CBS News/New York Times national poll done at the same time shows 58% of Americans favor gays serving openly, compared to 28% opposed. A November 2010 survey by the Pew Research Center found that 58 percent of the American public favors permitting homosexuals to serve openly in the military, while less than half that number (27 percent) are opposed. According to a November 2010 CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll 72% of adult Americans favor permitting people who are openly gay or lesbian to serve in the military, while 23 % oppose it. "The main difference between the CNN poll and the Pew poll is in the number of respondents who told pollsters that they didn't have an opinion on this topic - 16 percent in the Pew poll compared to only five percent in the CNN survey," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "The two polls report virtually the same number who say they oppose gays serving openly in the military, which suggests that there are some people who favor that change in policy but for some reason were reluctant to admit that to the Pew interviewers. That happens occasionally on topics where moral issues and equal-treatment issues intersect."
Since the policy was introduced in 1993, the military has discharged over 13,000 troops from the military under DADT. The number of discharges per fiscal year under DADT dropped sharply after the September 11 attacks and has remained comparatively low since. Discharges exceeded 600 every year until 2009.
With the Bradley Manning case (Gay soldier whom stole documents and passed them to Julian Assange and Wikileaks) exhibiting viral status, many might make the challenge that gays do not belong in the military, but most, if not all of American traitors have been of the heterosexual variety. So we can't invoke all gays are traitors, at least in the literal sense.
In February 2005, the Government Accountability Office released estimates on the cost of the policy. Cautioning that the amount may be too low, the GAO reported $95.4 million in recruiting costs and $95.1 million for training replacements for the 9,488 troops discharged from 1994 through 2003.
Arguing amongst congress in nothing new. With much on the table, these knockdown exchanges between parties only exacerbates an already discombobulated country.
While 99.6% of Americans suffer, Republicans argue over .393% of population. There are only approximately 1.18 Million people that earned $250,000 or more in 2009. Reiterating that's only .393% of the US population!!
These tax cuts WILL NOT create jobs. All issues and bills are separate from each other and should be treated as such. Holding these bills hostage, and for that matter the country because the left is not for these cretinous extensions are ludicrous and asinine at best. The Democrats are only asking the rich, less than 1% of Americans to pay an additional 4.6%, from 35% up to 39.6%!
DADT is only one of many bills being held up by the axis of idiots, and it appears this dust shall only settle when the majority of rancid tea bags rule the roost in January.
The laundry list of those effected by this stonewalling is astronomical, gays, military, wasted tax funds, the unemployed, the list is never ending.
President Obama needs to honor his plethora of commitments to those whom voted him into office. DADT should be the first on his bucket list!