CommunityPam's House Blend

Homo-bigot congressman confronted on DADT

Steve Ralls of the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, which is fighting to have Clinton’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell repealed, called out ace homophobe Representative Duncan Hunter, the Repug chair of the House Armed Services Committee on his bigotry at a public event last night.

Last night, Hunter was saluting a group of California veterans, just returned from the war, and when he left the stage, I approached him and asked, “Congressman Hunter, when will you allow Marty Meehan’s bill to repeal ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ out of committee?

Hunter boastfully (at first) said service members did not want to serve with gays, and he would not mark up the bill. When I pointed out poll after poll showing overwhelming support for lifting the ban, he dismissed those polls as “not true.”

And when I asked him to tell me that he at least saluted the sacrifice of gay service members in Iraq, appreciated their service and acknowledged their sacrifice for his freedom, he refused to do so. Instead, he refused to take my business card, turned his back and walked away.

I walked right along behind him.

And when I left the event for the evening, I said to Congressman Hunter very loudly “Shame on you for disrespecting the service of gay men and women in Iraq. Shame on you.”

The crowd in the auditorium turned and looked at Congressman Hunter, and everyone in the room knew: Hunter was called on his homophobia and his refusal to support gays and lesbians in uniform who are sacrificing so much for our country.

The bill submitted by Congressman Marty Meehan (D-MA), would allow patriotic, openly gay men and women to serve their country without fear of being discharged for their orientation. But Duncan Hunter stands in the way of the legislative process.

Just to name one poll, not that it matters since Duncan just ignores the facts, from Pew, in August 2005:
* 58% say gays and lesbians should be allowed to serve openly, up from 52% in July 1994.
* opposition has decreased? from 26% in 1994 to 15% today.

Solid majorities of seculars (72%), white Catholics (72%) and mainline Protestants (63%) believe gays and lesbians should be allowed to serve openly in the nation’s military; most white evangelical Protestants (55%) disagree.

Hunter’s a real winner on other issues as well…

* Voted YES on protecting the Pledge of Allegiance. (Sep 2004)
* Voted YES on constitutional amendment prohibiting flag desecration. (Jun 2003)
* Voted YES on banning gay adoptions in DC. (Jul 1999)
* Voted YES on Amendment to prohibit burning the US flag. (Jun 1999)
* Rated 7% by the ACLU
* Rated 0% by NARAL
* Rated 100% by the Christian Coalition.

You can contact Hunter here.

Hat tip, PageOneQ.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding