In the News: Military; “Say It Loud, We’re Gay and We’re Proud.”

By: Tiffani Haynesgaysoldier1

On Saturday, President Barack Obama spoke to Human Rights Campaign, a gay civil rights group, and vowed to end the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. The end of the 1993 policy will lift the ban on openly gay members of the military.

Obama is working with Pentagon and Congressional members to end the policy.

According to the Associated Press, “We should not be punishing patriotic Americans who have stepped forward to serve the country,” Obama said. “We should be celebrating their willingness to step forward and show such courage …especially when we are fighting two wars.”

While Obama has promised to lift the ban he didn’t establish exactly when, something gay advocates believe is most important.

“He repeated his promises that he’s made to us before, but he did not indicate when he would accomplish these goals and we’ve been waiting for a while now,” said Cleve Jones, activist and creator of the AIDS Memorial Quilt.

Obama also has plans to work on a law that “extends benefits to partners. Obama also called on Congress to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, which limits how state, local and federal bodies can recognize partnerships and determine benefits.”

He insisted that he understood the urgency and importance of gaining equal rights and lifting the ban on the military’s policy.

“I’m here with a simple message: I’m here with you in that fight,” Obama said.

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