Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mr. President,


As you know, Lt. Dan Choi is scheduled to be discharged from the military under the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy. This despite the fact that members of Lt. Choi's unit have stated that they have no problem with Lt. Choi's sexual orientation, still respect him, and wish to serve with him.


Lt. Choi, as you also know, is an Arab linguist whose services are desperately needed at this time. He is the kind of qualified person the military wants to recruit, but seldom gets in this era of declining standards.


Mr. President, Harry Truman desegregated the military with the stroke of a pen. One of the many arguments used to persuade Mr. Truman not to desegregate the military was that doing so would damage unit cohesion. It's also true, though regrettable, that for a time unit cohesion was adversely impacted by desegretation. But then our military men adjusted, and learned to work together - which goes to the heart of America's determination to improve itself. Soon, race was not an issue in the military. Since DADT was passed by Congress, informed Americans know it will not be as easy for you to end it. But it can be done, and must be done.


Mr. President, I supported you in the Ohio primary and in the election. I did so realizing, as a gay man, that the nation had more immediate concerns, including the economy. But there is a time when other issues reach critical mass, and DADT is reaching that point. To paraphrase Winston Churchill: Mr. President, with great respect, stopping Lt. Choi's discharge and working to repeal DADT is a thing to do NOW.



Hank Drake

I urge all my readers to call (202-456-1111) or e-mail the White House.

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