November 10, 2010

Experts: Pentagon Findings End Debate On Gays In The Military

Santa Barbara, Calif. – Today, the Palm Center released the following statement in response to a Washington Post story regarding findings in the Pentagon’s Comprehensive Working Group on gays in the military:

“The Pentagon’s findings overwhelmingly favor openly gay service in the military,” stated Dr. Aaron Belkin, Director of the Palm Center. Added Belkin: “These findings end the 50-year debate on gays in the military and move the United States a step closer to our allies in Britain, Israel and Australia.”

“The Pentagon has reportedly found what more than twenty other studies already found: that openly gay service does not harm military readiness,” said Dr. Nathaniel Frank, author of “Unfriendly Fire: How the Gay Ban Undermines the Military and Weakens America,” and a former researcher at the Palm Center. “With the unit cohesion debate settled, the question now is political: Will lawmakers who were waiting for these findings keep their word and proceed to an up or down vote on whether to end discrimination in our armed forces?”

Belkin concluded, “A measure of the full report is still needed and there are undoubtedly adjustments that will need to be considered as any transition to openly gay service moves forward. However, the Pentagon itself has made the strongest case for the repeal of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ in stating that this can be done during wartime without harming unit cohesion or military readiness.”