A year after the repeal of “Don't
Ask, Don't Tell,” the Pentagon cites fewer than 10 cases where
harassment or discrimination against gay troops was alleged.
“We were not fooling ourselves into
believing there would be no incidents,” Jeh C. Johnson, the
Pentagon's general counsel, told The New York Times.
One incident involved a female officer
who was told by another officer and a squadron commander to stop
dancing with her girlfriend during a New York military installation.
The situation turned physical when a sergeant major shoved one of the
officers across the floor. Both the squadron commander and the
sergeant major were forced to retire.
“Unfortunately, I could see this as
being a teaching moment for commanders on what not to do,” Aubrey
Sarvis, executive director of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network
(SLDN), told the Times.
President Barack Obama signed the bill
repealing the 18-year-old policy in December of 2010. The military
set aside nearly a year to implement repeal. On September 20, 2011
“Don't Ask, Don't Tell” officially came to an end.
That ushered in many firsts for the
military, including the first
gay kiss, the first
gay wedding on a military base, the first openly gay general and
the first gay
active duty troops to march in a Gay Pride parade.
Despite the few incidents, opponents
insist problems lie ahead.
“People in the military follow
orders,” Elaine Donnelly of the Center for Military Readiness said.
“Silence should not be interpreted as a sign of approval or