February 2nd, 2010
02:09 PM ET
8 years ago

Gates: Pentagon preparing repeal of 'don't ask, don't tell' policy

Washington (CNN) - The Pentagon has taken the first steps toward repealing the military's controversial "don't ask, don't tell" policy regarding gay and lesbian service members, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Tuesday.

Laying the groundwork for a repeal of the policy will take more than a year, Gates said. In the interim, however, the Defense Department will start enforcing the policy "in a fairer manner," he told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

President Obama called for a repeal of the policy during last week's State of the Union address.

Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen also endorsed a repeal Tuesday, telling the committee it is his "personal belief" that "allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly [in the military] would be the right thing to do."

"For me, personally, it comes down to integrity," he said.

Full story

Filed under: Don't Ask Don't Tell • Pentagon
soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. Nicky

    I think that it's the right thing to do in the face of the fact that our Nato allies including Israel allows Gays and intersex people in the military.

    February 2, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  2. Nevada dude

    good. its about time
    when you are in uniform, it doesnt matter if you are black white brown or yellow, if you are man or woman, gay or straight, from the north or the south, democrat or republican.

    You are the best fighting machine in the world, period.

    February 2, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  3. Angus McDugan

    Though we have heard of stupid haste in war, cleverness has never been seen associated with long delays. Also, there is no instance of a country having benefited from prolonged warfare.

    Sun Tzu

    February 2, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  4. all the news that's fit to omit

    As someone that served 6 years, I can honestly say this is a huge mistake.

    Bootcamp, foxholes and birthing areas along WITH SHOWERS all change if you know the person next to you is gay and that is just a REALITY.

    Sometimes what you DON'T know is a good thing.

    Feel free to disagree, but if you never had the seeds (like Obambi) to join, you wouldn't understand why THIS IS DIFFERENT than the real world.

    One veterans opinion.

    February 2, 2010 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  5. Oh please...now they are going totake one year to study the issue......

    nothing but stalling going on here...and since you've got a president who will not support gay marriage, what does it all mean anyway?.....

    How do you have a president that is from a minority himself deny marriage rights to another minority? And don't give me a religious excuse because that's Sarah palin's argument.

    February 2, 2010 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  6. rjt

    Only reason Obama is moving on this is because there are several lawsuits heading for the supreme court to challenge the governments position on this. If he doesn't do this soon he will need to stand behind the government in the case and he will lose face. Its a bad idea. Whats next, allow seperate special catgories for other sexual fetishes? Maybe we should allow the polygamists, bestiality practicers and fur-verts to be OPEN

    February 2, 2010 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  7. NVa Native

    It was meant to appease the stupid people then, and now it's just stupid.

    February 2, 2010 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  8. Greg

    Just curious how Middle Eastern countries that already have prohibitions against US soldiers on their soil use of alcohol and pornography will view a gay tolerant military?

    February 2, 2010 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  9. Independent

    Good to hear. It is past time to repeal the misguided policy of DADT.

    This is not a D or R issue; it is an American issue to allow military men & women to continue serving our country they love with honor.

    February 2, 2010 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  10. Carole

    NOW we all have to wait for Palin to weigh in. After all, CNN sees her as a credible source to keep putting up articles on the nitwit.

    The moron can't even answer 5th grade history lessons......she needs to buy more of her own books with her SaraPac monies to make a profit and give them out to her mindless racist flunkies.

    February 2, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  11. valwayne

    Gay men and woman in this country shouldn't be lulled into complacency. Obama is still our Discriminator in Chief and he and the Democrats still have not fulfilled their promises to end the discrimination against our heroes risking their lives for us in Iraq and Afghanistan. When they say it will take a year they mean they are going to delay until next years elections when Obama and the Democrats have pulled in all the money and all the votes they can get from gay men and women, and then we'll be sent to the back of the bus for another 20 years. Obama and the Democrats can pass a bill eliminating descrimination in 24 hours if they want to do so. 3 months is plenty of time, it shoudl really already be done, and every gay man and woman in this country needs to make a solemn vow not to give a single Democrat a penny, or a vote, until they get it done. The lies and the betrayals have to end....and end now!!!! Its past time for gay men and women to follow in the footsteps of Rosa Parks!!!!!!!!

    February 2, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  12. Average American

    Thank you for making a public statement in favor of repealing DADT Adm. Mullen.

    Integrity and fairness...what interesting concepts.

    February 2, 2010 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  13. BK

    You've ~already had a year~ to lay ground work. Stop saying you'll do things and DO THEM!

    February 2, 2010 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  14. Obama - worse Presidet ever.

    This looks good on the President. NOT! I said all along he is an incompetent, indecisive, inexperienced moron. His "whatever you want to call it", but it wasn't a speech today in NH was a joke. He totally insulted the Young Lady at the end that was a three time cancer survivor. That just goes to show you he is lost. He is still blaming Bush for the deficit. Obama actually believes he is doing a good job. All he has done is post blame on Bush and the republicans. He has yet to take ownership in anything he has done.

    Obama is going to cost the democrats everything.

    February 2, 2010 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  15. ICARE

    I voted for Obama for change, cut I didnt vote to be pro-gay. Anyway, it's nice that you are going to remove that barrier, but it comes with a curse.

    According to studies, gay men have the highest rate of getting and dying from AIDS, what is the military going to do to ensure the safety of our military? Imagine waking up to millions of men, INFECTED, with the AIDS virus... if this happens, we are not going to be able to defend the country, if everyone DIES from AIDS.

    If you are going to allow it, then have plan B ready, to ensure our national security is not at risk. Separate hospitals for AIDS patients/?

    February 2, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  16. Franky, Land of Lincoln

    I confess, I don't want gay people in our military...but before making any assumptions, is not because I don't know some(although I know some people who do), it is not my intent to congratulate or open my arms to them. This ain't California.

    It is not the time and place to be allowing such a procedure to take place, gay people in general do have it hard than anyone else. It is arguably a first in our countries history. And the numbers are exaggerating, it only accounts less than 3% of the total population who indeed are gay and are in the military.

    I agree, is their right if they wanna fight for our country but we need to do a much better job at venting these individuals. I voted for Obama for different things, and this is definitely not one of them.

    What's the cure? Intimacy but you think people wanna befriend a gay?

    February 2, 2010 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  17. Sniffit

    Some of these claims from the bigots are pretty ridiculous. You're telling me they can boot-camp train the ornery out of the most irrascible, misbehaved, beligerent a$$hats we can throw at them and turn them into obedient, disciplined soldiers, but somehow, for some unknown reason they can't train the prejudice out of them or teach them to keep it in sufficient control that they place their duty always comes first??

    Choose: If you're right, it's because our military's cultural is a repository of institutionalized bigotry. If you're wrong, you're just a flailing bigot asking our military to be cowed by peoples' prejudices instead of standing up for the ideals they claim to be willing to die for.

    February 2, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  18. What???

    Though this isn't high on my personal list of priorities, we all should consider that someone risking their very lives for this country should not be discharged because of their sexual preferences.

    I understand there are concerns about the soldiers (both men and women) that might not accept the lifestyle of LG community but unfortunately enough for them, homosexual soldiers isn't a new phenomenon. The difference now is everyone is entitle to their freedoms because....that's what we are fighting for.

    February 2, 2010 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  19. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    How sad, that in the 21st Century, the Military is still back in the 1800's!

    Today I heard of a Poll, by an Independent pollster. This poll was of Republicans, here are some of the stunning and disturbing results:

    73% of Republicans do not think Gays should be allowed to teach.
    63% of Republicans believe that President Obama is a socialist (that's true of all Democrats, though)
    ONLY .......42%...... believe that President Obama is a U.S. born citizen! Which tells me, that the Republicans do not have faith in our system of government!

    IF you do not believe Obama is a U.S. citizen, then you believe that George W. Bush allowed a non-citizen to become president, and the CIA, NSA and FBI are a bunch of idiots!

    February 2, 2010 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |