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Oct 20 2010

Dan Choi Re-Enlisted in the Army

(10 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

U.S. Military Moves to Accept Gay Recruits

The United States military, for the first time, is allowing its recruiters to accept openly gay and lesbian applicants.

The historic move follows a series of decisions by a federal judge in California, Virginia A. Phillips, who ruled last month that the “don’t ask, don’t tell” law violates the equal protection and First Amendment rights of service members. On Oct. 12, she ordered the military to stop enforcing the law.

President Obama has said that the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy “will end on my watch.” But the Department of Justice, following its tradition of defending laws passed by Congress, has fought efforts by the Log Cabin Republicans, a gay organization, to overturn the policy.

Judge Phillips on Tuesday denied requests by the government to maintain the status quo during the appeals process.

The Pentagon has stated its intent to file an appeal in case of such a ruling. But meanwhile, it has started complying with Judge Phillips’s instructions while the dispute over her orders plays out.

With this announcement, Lt. Dan Choi, the Iraq war veteran, Arab linguist, and West Point grad turned “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal activist, decided to take the opportunity to do what he has said he has always wanted to do, serve his country in the military. First, he tried to enlist in the Marine Corps but being 29 made him one year too old. So instead, Dan went to the Army recruiters and filled out the application to re-enlist. He will return at 10 AM to begin processing as an enlisted soldier, most likely a specialist since he is a college graduate.

Dan, you rock.

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