The End of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell

After 17 years, the horrible, bigoted policy known as Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is over.  Repealed.  Kaput.  Consigned to the trashcan of history.

I am very happy for the covertly gay and lesbian soldiers who now can be open about their private lives without fear of reprisal.  I am happy for all those brave men and women who were wrongfully discharged because of DADT and who are either morally redeemed or can (if they choose) return to serve.  I am happy that, for once, a law that benefits the LGBT community was passed by the United States Congress.

Having said all that, DADT only affects a very small subsection of the LGBT community.  Repeal of DADT is a symbolic victory, a political victory and a moral victory.  It is also however, in the grand scheme of things, a very small victory.  DADT should have been a slam dunk, but it barely squeaked by (all credit to President Obama though who kept his promise to repeal DADT on his watch.)

If it was so difficult to pass a repeal of DADT with possibly the LGBT-friendliest Congress ever, then how much harder is it going to be to get other legislation passed with a much hostile Congress?  Other legislation that will effect a greater number of people such as: The Employment Non Discrimination Act, The Student Non Discrimination Act, a repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (and full marriage equality for the entire country), pension and Social Security benefits reform, health insurance benefits for partners of gay federal workers, immigration reform that treats homosexual partners like heterosexual partners, legislation preventing discrimination in adoption rights, and transgender-friendly laws in any field.  I am sure I am forgetting other important and necessary legislation.

The Arc of the Moral Universe is long indeed.

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