An archaic law | AspenTimes.com

An archaic law

Dear Editor:

Don’t Ask Don’t Tell: An archaic law that has seen its time … it should be put to rest, just like some of our other antique laws. Example: Did you know that there are still laws on the books that require an automobile driver to have a second person walking 50 paces ahead with a red lantern to warn farmers/ranchers that an automobile is approaching so as to not frighten their livestock. Is this law still current in today’s world?

Don’t ask, don’t tell is a law that is throwing out noble, dedicated and talented men and women who wish to serve our country … can we really afford to be discharging combat tested, West Point educated, Arabic Linguistics specialists/officers and highly trained pilots (such as Lt. Dan Choi Arabic Linguistic specialist or Lt. Colonel Victor Fehrenbach, an 18-year veteran fighter pilot) after we spend time and money training them? Would you discharge Kobe Bryant or Michael Jordan from your basketball team if you found out they were gay? Not if you valued winning a championship!

Here’s my best analogy: You own a two story house and it’s on fire. The firemen race up to your house. You scream that your children are on the second floor and to please save them! The fireman or woman says, “Don’t worry, we’ll save your children.” Before they bravely put their lives on the line to enter the flames and rescue them, you have the choices of what to say to them: Choice A: Thank you! Thank you! Or, Choice B: What is your sexual orientation?

You get the point … it’s not relevant.

If any man or woman is willing to put their life, limb or blood on the line for America, I think it’s time for us to just simply say: “Thank you!” Every veteran who serves our country deserves our utmost thanks, our respect and the best medical/physiological support that money can buy. What types and kinds of relationships they carry on in their private lives is none of our business or something we have any right to judge.

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We must ask ourselves: Do we truly care who our car mechanic/soldier/doctor/etc. loves? No, we don’t. However, we do care that he/she does a really good job on our car. It’s time to eliminate this utter waste of talent and repeal this outdated homophobic prejudicial law that encourages discrimination. Honor and respect are the backbone of those who serve in our Armed Forces. To protect and to serve is a quality we revere, and since when did we teach/encourage our sons and daughters to lie about who they are?

KC Johnson

Snowmass