March 24th, 2010
01:21 PM ET
4 years ago

Source: Pentagon set to ease policy on gays in the military

Robert Gates is expected to announce changes to 'don't ask don't tell' on Thursday.
Robert Gates is expected to announce changes to 'don't ask don't tell' on Thursday.

Washington (CNN) – Defense Secretary Robert Gates is expected to announce changes Thursday easing the Defense Department's controversial "don't ask don't tell" policy prohibiting homosexuals from serving openly in the military, a senior Defense Department official has confirmed to CNN.

The official said one of the changes will be that outings by third parties may no longer be automatic grounds for initiating separation proceedings, especially if it is proven that the person making the allegation has a grudge against the military member.

Gates' announcement will focus on regulatory changes that can be made at the Pentagon without the approval of Congress, which has been debating whether to change the law. President Barack Obama has asked for a repeal of the controversial measure.

soundoff (23 Responses)
  1. al in memphis

    Can we have a rationale conversation about this. If you are in the military, the only open thing we want you to focus on the duty you swore to do. Whether you are homsexual or hetrosexual, your sexual preference is not on display for acceptance. Unless people are not respecting your right to privacy, then open display of sexual preference is not what the military about.

    March 24, 2010 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  2. 1st Step

    This is a good first step. But the entire bill needs to be repealed. Policies like DADT give radical governors such as Bob McDonnell the idea that they can apply that law to states.

    March 24, 2010 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  3. SocialismBad

    Obama administration cowtowing to his gay constituency at the expense of our military. It appears Obama aims to wreck everything in sight in his 4 years in office.

    March 24, 2010 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  4. Jim

    this is a no-brainer ... let our men serve regardless of their sexual orientation.

    March 24, 2010 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  5. Peejay

    Uh oh. This will really send John McCain round the bend.

    March 24, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  6. cindy

    Just do away with "dont ask dont tell"..it is an outdated policy....

    I am proud of ALL of our Military!

    Dont ask, dont tell is a huge double dish of disrespect for the men and woman that put there lives on the line each and every day so that WE can be FREE....

    March 24, 2010 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  7. frank in Valparaiso

    It wasn't just grudges, commanders would go nuts on their queer hunts. Get some nut case who sees gays behind every bush, unit morale would go to zero. Same with the commanders who thought the enlisted were there sexual toys. Yeah, there are a lot more than you think. There is a lot of sex that would cause a million dollar lawsuit in a corporation. A lot of the fundamentalists were the worst.

    Though once somebody called the Wing Commander's wife that he wanted to see her. So she goes in through his private entrance instead of through the secretary, vice commander, NCOIC, all that. She shreiks. so somebody flips the emergency button that calls the fire dept and security police, vice commander runs in, secretary, NCOIC. commander is standing there erect with his pants down with the aide. Wife is livid. Security police run in like a SWAT team, fire dept runs up with radios and everything. Not to mention all the other looky loos in the hall. Yeah, it was pretty funny. Funny he retired after that, and there was a divorce.

    March 24, 2010 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  8. KLS

    This is the right thing to do.
    If brave patriotic “gay” American men and women want to give the ultimate sacrifice to protect our American way of life then they should be allowed to do so.

    March 24, 2010 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  9. gt

    more change from obama.....our,,the america moral fiber is being lost a bit at a time.... drip....drip....drip....drip..... ugh

    March 24, 2010 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  10. Michael from Ventura

    About time!

    March 24, 2010 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  11. get real

    This hopey changey thing is getting better and better every day. How's that obstructionist thing workin' out for ya?

    March 24, 2010 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  12. Marc

    Don't 'ease' it. Repeal it!

    March 24, 2010 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  13. Wisconsonite - Republicans Do NOT Care About Working Class Americans

    I guess it's a start, but come ON already! Repeal it!

    March 24, 2010 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  14. Brnmar

    Keep the policy the way it is now. It has worked for the past 18 years. Any change will be a negative for the US military.

    March 24, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  15. Rick McDaniel

    It sure would be nice, if the US government stopped discriminating against its citizens.

    March 24, 2010 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  16. Bethy

    It's about time!!!!

    March 24, 2010 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  17. James

    Just repeal it and move on.

    March 24, 2010 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  18. Bob44

    It's about time the military joined the 21st Century!

    March 24, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  19. R.B.

    Inane refinements to the existing prejudicial law are not acceptable. Gay men and women honorably serving this country deserve a repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell.

    March 24, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  20. BB

    It's about time!!!!!! Yipeee!!!

    March 24, 2010 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  21. Copying From The Smart Kid in Class?

    The Obama administration was smart to name a Republican ... Robert Gates ... as Secretary of Defense.

    Not because of policy but because of the imagery and diatribes that the the Republican National Committee would normally thrown otherwise.

    March 24, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  22. Jin

    ABOUT TIME!!! Welcome to the 21st Century.

    March 24, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  23. Independent

    It is a step in the right direction to help emphasize the importance of repealing DADT for Americans serving our country with honor.

    Thank you, Sec. Gates and leaders, for standing strong on principle to repeal the misguided policy of DADT.

    March 24, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |