Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Humour In Uniform

Unsurprising news today, as Marine General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, announces his support for the US Army's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.

"I believe homosexual acts between two individuals are immoral and that we should not condone immoral acts," the General declared with a straight face, defending the policy which has seen the dismissal of over 10,000 troops, including more than fifty Arabic speakers.

Well, that seems a bit harsh. After all, the gay community isn't a monolith - there are always a few bad apples who make the others look bad.

I can see the need for discretion, however. If you started letting just anybody into the army, why, before you knew it you'd be knee-deep in sexual jiggery-pokery and human pyramids.

I can also understand the fears of red-blooded US soldiers. If I was busy shooting people, I'd want to be sure that the man behind me was protecting my ass, rather than splattering it with thick wads of filthy yoghurt.

You'd be surprised by how common accidental discharges can be. If I may, however, I have a suggestion.

If it's morality that they're concerned about, the US military should surely follow the openness of the British Army, which now actively recruits from the gay community.

Since this policy was instituted, the incidence of Iraqi prisoners beating themselves to death and recruits committing suicide by shooting themselves twice in the head have dropped dramatically.

Who knows what wonders such a broadminded policy could do for the Marines?

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