American Legion Opposes ‘Don’t, Ask, Don’t Tell’ and Any Questions Related To It

05.26.10 Bucky Turco

cleveland_american_legion The American Legion, one of the country’s oldest veterans organizations and places for old men to sit around and drink, weighed in on the increasing likelihood that the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy would be repealed. They sent an open letter to President Obama, urging him to reconsider.

They noted how this isn’t a good idea right now because of the increased “tension” in Korea. The cranky veteran group’s “national commander,” Clarence E. Hill, wrote:

We feel strongly that the current policy has served the U.S. military well for 17 years and it would not be wise to make a major cultural change in the middle of two wars and with tension rising on the Korean peninsula.

So I called their spokesman, Marty Callaghan, and asked him if the American Legion is okay with gay veterans joining their organization and he said, “Any wartime-era veterans are eligible for membership.” So I followed up with a, ‘so yes, you do allow gay veterans to join as long as they satisfy the wartime requirement?’ But Callaghan quickly fired back, “That will be your inference.” When pressed again to clarify, he simply answered, “We don’t have any answer to that, everything we have to say is in the news release.”

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