Appeals court suspends enforcement of 'don't ask, don't tell' policy
President Barack Obama signs the Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act of 2010 into law at the Department of the Interior in Washington, DC, on December 22, 2010.
July 6th, 2011
03:42 PM ET
11 years ago

Appeals court suspends enforcement of 'don't ask, don't tell' policy

WASHINGTON (CNN) - A federal appeals court has issued an order blocking the U.S. military from enforcing its "don't ask, don't tell" policy on gays and lesbians serving in the military. U.S. officials have been moving ahead with dismantling the policy but had objected to having the courts force the government to officially repeal it at this time.

At issue in the complex legal fight is whether "don't ask, don't tell" can remain in effect - even in name only - while the legal fight over its constitutionality is being fought in the federal courts. Judges have been at odds over the enforcement issue for months.


Filed under: Don't Ask Don't Tell • Gay rights
soundoff (50 Responses)
  1. Mindlayr

    Religion is evil and homosexuals will judge you all.

    July 6, 2011 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  2. Homo Harry

    Evil pple, you'll be judged for judgin us – remember, God loves everyone!! Have a fabulous day! 🙂

    July 6, 2011 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  3. JohnInNM

    I've been a long time supporter of the premise gays are born with a genetic predisposition to be gay. I fully support that with the clear understanding other factors such as environment and an amount of choice also play significant roles. We have now been blessed with the scientific determination there is a genetic motivator for a person to be a liberal. One can only hope they can find suitable treatments for both of these genetic defects and rid the world of both scourges.

    July 6, 2011 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  4. CosmicC

    @Lucifer, thank you for playing, but you need to check your facts. Homosexuality is well documented in many species. Clearly, since it exists, it has benefits as a survival trait. Perpetuation of a trait through evolution tends to require either a neutral or positive correlation to increased survival of the species, but not necessarily of the genes of an individual.

    July 6, 2011 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  5. Cedar Rapids

    'We have now been blessed with the scientific determination there is a genetic motivator for a person to be a liberal'
    except the defective ones are the people born with it missing.

    July 6, 2011 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  6. Troy

    I'm an openly straight man, and I have absolutely no problem with this. In fact, it's about time. Homosexuality is not a "choice," and those who are homosexuality should not be treated as if they decided to be who they are. All people should be treated like people. It's just common sense. Who would choose to be told they're evil? Who would choose to be discriminated against? Who would choose to risk being hurt or killed?

    When I see an attractive woman, the chemistry in my body makes me feel a certain way that tells me I'm attracted to her. I can't control it any more than I can control my height. When I see an attractive man, I simply don't get those feelings. I can't force myself to be attracted to a man any more than a homosexual man can force himself to be attracted to a woman.

    For those who still think homosexuality is a choice, ask yourself this. Did you choose to be straight?

    July 6, 2011 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  7. MovingOn

    So it looks like the next step will be desegregating male and female service members. I hope women are ok with showering and living in close quarters with men, because thats the only thing left to make happen to cause the highest level of sexual discomfort possible in the military. Glad my time is served, and I'm grateful that I won't be around when our military is made up of only women and homos.

    July 6, 2011 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  8. Chas in Iowa

    Make the wrong kind of remark or touch my junk when I have a weapon in hand and see why don't ask, don't tell was a good policy.

    July 6, 2011 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  9. BillTX

    Evil pple and John NM, go back in your respective caves, please.

    July 6, 2011 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  10. Ramrod

    I am here to promote homos. Most of you guys should become homos. That would leave more girls for me.

    July 6, 2011 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    "They do not however deserve the rights and priveledges of "normal" couples that mate and produce offspring. So, two lesbians that go to a sperm bank to bet inseminated don't get the priveledges of parents. The two gay men that use a surrogate to provide an egg and have it fertilized by one of them don't deserve the priveledges of parents.

    After all, they are "naturally" not attracted to humans with whom they can pro-create so nature must not mean for them to reproduce. "

    Sorry, well established public policy is to encourage fostering and adoption. Don't like it? Don't reproduce and have gay children.

    July 6, 2011 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  12. cajr

    for those of you who don't believe in God, fine. but stop trying to tell people he doesnt exist. you have not died so you don't know anymore than i do. and when we do find out, we will be judged for our own sins. personally i could care less who people sleep with. the problem i have is in the schools. i don't want that garbage being fed to my children saying its ok to be gay. for most of us it is not ok for our kids to learn that. when they are adults they can decide on their own, but until then, let parents handle that. so in reality you may very well enjoy pipe smoking and carpet munching but in case you haven't noticed, most of us think its foul. just keep it to yourselves and out of our sight and schools.

    July 6, 2011 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  13. CKPS

    @sametestsameresults and @doug - God, it feels great whenever I run across a comment on one of these things that is thoughtful, seasoned with real experience and actually reflects the kind of "values" so many of these bloggers claim to support but don't really seem to understand. Views on gays aside, you guys rock!

    July 6, 2011 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  14. sgurdog

    Now let the Supreme Court tell us that cash is equivalent to free speech but gays are not.

    July 6, 2011 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  15. Nature Lover


    this country has been doing that since the day it was founded. First non property owners, then black america, then women, and now the GLBT groups. This country calims to be "free" but when push comes to shove this country has to be "awakened" to the new reality.

    July 6, 2011 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  16. studdmuffins

    Why not choose the Pentagon as the venue to sign this legislation?

    Which court?

    July 6, 2011 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  17. WAHEID

    Homosexuals have served in the military for thousands of years. Alexander the Great, one of the greatest military leaders ever, was openly gay. Julius Caesar, whose military campaigns are still studied at West Woint, very probably had one or more gay partners. When I was in the Navy, I know a number of sailors and at least one gay USMC major who were almost certainly gay - and everyone around them knew it. It was the religious types who decided that being gay was evil. Today most educated people realize that what is really evil is intolerance.

    July 6, 2011 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  18. ThinkAgain

    @JohnInNM: So being gay and Liberal are genetically-determined "scourges." You are a self-centered, weak, hateful person, transferring all your self-loathing righteously onto those who are different than you.

    I pity you and your pathetic soul.

    July 6, 2011 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  19. Blackdruid

    @ Evilppl and other like you. Your god does not deserve worship and it is you and yer ilk that show this everyday

    July 6, 2011 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  20. Harlequinn Bell


    "nature intended for different sexual orientations"?
    Really? Nature usually selects behaviors / biology that promote, among other things, continuation of the species. Homosexuality in particular does not.
    Thanks for playing, though. Try again.

    Nature also causes some species to instinctually engage in mass suicides, lemmings being only one example.

    Perpetuation of any species as a whole requires a mechanism for population control so that the species in question does not perpetuate beyond the immediate environment's ability to support it. Since humanity has a number of conflicting biological and emotional drives – pairing, sexual engagement, etc. in concert with a natural drive to perpetuate the species, how do you know that homosexuality ISN'T something that exists in nature as a biological response to population pressure? A response that allows one to enjoy all of the aspects of a relational pairing and sexual engagement with another of the human species without adding to the pressure of population? So while homosexuality may not promote the perpetuation of a specific individual's genetic lineage, it does contribute to the perpetuation of the species as a whole.

    Perpetuation of an individual lineage and perpetuation of an entire species are not interchangeable concepts. Thanks for playing, though. Try again.

    July 6, 2011 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  21. ThinkAgain

    @Larry: Until someone dies and comes back with Polaroids, no one really knows what happens after we die. If the promise of something better motivates you to be a better person, so be it.

    I just with more people could live ethical, moral, compassionate, tolerant lives JUST FOR ITS OWN SAKE and not for some selfish reward after they die ...

    July 6, 2011 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  22. josh

    nature did not intend for different sexual was the sexual deviants that did and now they want equality.this people are sick but now it's the other way around.the right is wrong and viceversa,the gays are sick period.

    July 6, 2011 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  23. Kyle

    Good job blocking something that's more than 15 years old as it's about to get repealed anyhow. Good job. Go pat yourselves on the back now.

    July 6, 2011 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  24. ThinkAgain

    @Jimbo: Did you read the article this weekend about the gay soldier who was killed earlier this year in Afghanistan, Andrew Wilfahrt? The members of his company all knew he was gay – and they didn't care.

    Maybe they are just better soldiers than you are ...

    July 6, 2011 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  25. Science Much?

    I hope that those of you so quick to invoke evolutionary science (not that you have the slightest idea what you're on about) are equally as quick to defend the teaching of science, and science alone, in your kids' biology classrooms.

    July 6, 2011 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
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