President Obama in his run for the presidency promised to institute changes in the infamous “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy which compels those who serve the nation to become liars if they wish to continue risking their lives in order to protect the American people. A new study reveals a rather unusual aspect of this policy. Of the 619 members of the armed forces who openly spoke about their sexual orientation and were discharged, 209 were women and 279 belonged to groups that are classified as being minority members. Captain Julianne Sohn, who was discharged after returning from a tour of duty in Iraq, notes the policy “is like snapshot of institutional prejudice.” Evelyn Thomas, a black lesbian who was discharged from the Marines pointed out, “for people of color and women, the military is an opportunity to advance in life.” A Pentagon spokesperson, Cynthia Smith says the military does not have a clue as to why there might be this disproportionate figure, and they are barred by the law from making any such analysis.
Servicemembers United examined Pentagon figures and concluded in 2008 about 45% of service members who were discharged under the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy were from minorities even though these groups constitute about 30% of the military force. Women were 34% of those discharged even though women are only 14% of the military. The figures do not lie, there IS discrimination in applying this policy.