What makes you more upset, ignorance or incompetence? I use to think incompetence pissed me off the point of wanting to punch people in the face, but ignorance has surely won this round. I'm pretty liberal, so as long as a person doesn't sacrafice another human being in the name of religion, I'm pretty much down with whatever beliefs a person has. While, they may not be for me, "Do what you Do" is my motto. So what happened you may ask. Well, recently, the government has put an end to legalized bigotry. Bill Clinton's policy on Homosexuals in the military "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" was recently repealed. So what does that mean for the military. IGNORANCE!!! This will be a difficult time for the military as it once again strives to accept people who aren't WASPS. (white anglo saxon protestants)
An Army Major asked the question, "Who in this office to this survey that says the military personnel think its okay to serve openly gay in the military?" Of course, no one in this office was asked to take the survey. So the Army Major proceeds to take his own survey. I stupidly asked the question, what does serving openly mean. Of course I got the whole, your a support officer and never been in a combat unit. That dude don't know me or my career so hush up Army Major. Now, let's take a step back for a moment and answer the following question, "What does serving gay mean?" The Army Major has his own definition, "Serving gay is when a male soldier comes to work and is really feminine talking about hey girlfriend." Yes, ladies and gentlemen, all this damn education in the world, and ignorance still prevails in professional organizations. When a leader can articulately define what serving openly gays mean, then I will debate it. In my opinion, serving openly gay means having the same rights and privileges that heterosexual couple have. Serving openly means not having to hide as a female, that I have a girlfriend, or lying about my whereabouts to my squad mates this weekend. It doesn't mean someone coming "tooted" up to formation articulating the gay sterotypes my comrades in arms loves to exploit. The results of our office survey, 7 out of 11 personnel were against repealing Don't Ask Don't Tell.
I have a question. How many leaders have served with openly gay soldiers? How many leaders have served with outstanding soldiers who you trust your flipping life with, who were openly gay? I would assume that 70 percent of leaders have been in this situation. And never did it cross our mind to report him or her under "Don't Ask Don't Tell" Mostly because as long as a soldier does his or her job, it doesn't matter to us who you go home to at night. So with all that said, is there ignorance still out there. Yes, I recently read an article in the NY times, where a soldier said, "Taking showers will be awkward." REALLY!!! REALLY!!! Why would taking showers be awkward, because you assume that every gay man wants you, or because you are just that damn stupid.
As a leader, when do we stop making excuses for our soldiers ignorance. Why is it okay for a Commander to segregate soldiers based on sexual orientation. It has never been okay as a leader to condone prejudice and ignorance, however, in my opinion, allowing sexual orientation dictate living arrangements or what unit he or she is assigned too is condoning a person's prejudice. If you are an adult, he or she needs to be treated as such, deal with it. The same way a soldier deals with the platoon leader that he hates, is the same way a soldier deals with a gay roommate.