Monday, December 6, 2010

Letter to the Editor

I wrote a Letter to the Editor to The Redding Record Searchlight Newspaper and emailed it in. The newspaper printed it on December 5, 2010. I did not think they would since I could not give them a working phone number but gave them one of my son's telephone number since the one I use in Korea has an extra number and it won't fit the space allotted for phone numbers.

It was in response to a plea from President Obama who asked everyone to write a letter to the Editor to their local newspaper advocating the changing of the policy of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" in the military. It has been used to discharge soldiers who were serving well and has caused untold heartache among our troops. They were discharged because of who they are.

I am a heterosexual American citizen who is also a veteran of the U.S. Army and I served during the Viet Nam War. I knew of many soldiers during that war who served well but were afraid of being found out that they were gay. It is time that this policy which was initially put into place as a stop gap measure until the USA was ready to accept openly serving Americans of all sexual orientations. I think the time is here now.

Normally, I don't get too political on these Blogs, but civil rights of all human beings is something that all of us in this world ought to care about. In the US, there is the Bill of Rights that give all people the essential right to be treated equal although different groups had to fight for that right. At least it is possible. In some countries, it is not possible.

They are debating this in the American Senate now. The American House of Representatives have passed it already. If it isn't passed during the Lame Duck Senate, it might not be passed for a long time. That would really be very sad.

If you are not in the United States, please be aware that sexual orientation is not a choice. I could no longer think of changing my orientation than you can whatever it is. Each human being as the right to exist as they really are. In some countries, the punishment of being gay is death or imprisonment. Let's hope this changes someday. It will not in my lifetime. I know that, but I can say it out there in cyberspace. I will not be arrested here in Korea.

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