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Old 04-08-2005, 09:34 AM   #31
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Excuse me, but I have said nothing here to try and insult anyone. I'm sorry I thought this was the DEBATE area of the forum. Or am I not allowed to have a difference of opinion? Not much here to debate if we all agree on everything all the time. I would t least expect all the "free thinkers" who think I'm so wrong to at least defend my right to disagree.

of course you have the right to disagree, and please continue to do so. but if you pose an argument, people who disagree with you are going to challenge that argument, and then it is your job to defend your argument (if you wish). i don't think it would be an interesting forum if everyone simply stated their opinion, and then went unchallenged. i've seen some amazingly productive threads that come from being challenged -- on a personal note, i've come to appreciate that "Christians" are as varied and diverse as any other group in the US, where previously i had tended to view "Christians" -- at least those who professed as such and claimed it as a huge portion of their identity -- as something rather monolithic, and rather oppressive.

but that insight didn't come from strumming a guitar and singing kumbya. it came from friction.

however, i do think that when you make the assumption that a gay man is going to be attracted to you simply because you're a man, that assumption is rooted in what i would view as ignorance. not hate, not bigotry, but assumptions that you've probably internalized. it's my job, then, to point this out. it's your job, then, to disagree (if you do) and tell me i'm full of crap and point out exactly where and why.
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Old 04-08-2005, 09:34 AM   #32
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Originally posted by melon


You're allowed to have a difference of opinion. By all means, continue to air it.

Be aware, though, that I write my own counter-opinion, and in various ways generally to try and force people to think.

Cheers...

Melon
So Melon, Do others ever make you think or are you just so much more intellectually superior that your views can only make others think??? Kinda sounds like you put yourself above others.
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Old 04-08-2005, 09:38 AM   #33
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Originally posted by Abomb-baby
So Melon, Do others ever make you think or are you just so much more intellectually superior that your views can only make others think??? Kinda sounds like you put yourself above others.
I never said I was modest.

Now let's get back to the topic at hand, shall we?

Melon
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Old 04-08-2005, 09:42 AM   #34
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i'm going to argue the other side, for a sec.

one of my best friends, who i've lived with, who has been in the coast guard and is 100% straight, has said to me that he doesn't think, at least in the infantry, that openly gay soldiers should serve. the reason: he fears for their safety. like it or not, there are many areas in this country where being gay is possibly the worst thing you can be, aside from a child molestor (and often the two are horribly conflated). they would see nothing wrong with gay bashing. this doesn't make it right, this doesn't make it fair, but he says it's a reality.

that said, why interpreters with fluent Arabic and Farsi skills are dismissed because they are gay is utterly beyond me. what utter stupidity.
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Old 04-08-2005, 09:49 AM   #35
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Hey...as long as they keep "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" through my draft eligibility age, I'm probably not going to complain, honestly. Personally, I want absolutely nothing to do with the military, and I have a great excuse if Dubya overextends himself in the near future.

I do think, however, that "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" casts a deep shadow over the military, with most people, I think, perceiving the military as the last refuge for the uneducated, for the poor, and for bigots. It is unfortunate; even I will agree on that. However, the military consistently refuses to do anything to shake that perception. Maybe some training on "professional behavior" is in order.

Melon
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Old 04-08-2005, 10:34 AM   #36
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Originally posted by Irvine511
i
one of my best friends, who i've lived with, who has been in the coast guard and is 100% straight, has said to me that he doesn't think, at least in the infantry, that openly gay soldiers should serve. the reason: he fears for their safety.
This is actually what I was going to say. The argument that openly gay soldiers in the military would make straights "uncomfortable" is laughable next to the very real danger openly gay soldiers would face from homophobic soldiers.
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Old 04-08-2005, 10:57 AM   #37
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Originally posted by pax


That struck me as pretty offensive, actually.

We do welcome free debate in here, and you're entitled to your opinion, but this is a moderated forum and we do have certain standards of decency to which we expect people to adhere.

Thank you.
Actually, I don't think it's offensive. If the man prefers not to be attractive to gay men it's defnitely an opinion.

I'd rather not be attractive to 80-year old women ...or men. How is that offensive?
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Old 04-08-2005, 11:09 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally posted by pax


That struck me as pretty offensive, actually.

We do welcome free debate in here, and you're entitled to your opinion, but this is a moderated forum and we do have certain standards of decency to which we expect people to adhere.

Thank you.
What a crock. This person is entitled to their opinion; just like you are. I didn't realize that moderaters were able to pick and choose how they moderate according to their own ideology.
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Old 04-08-2005, 11:16 AM   #39
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I'm not picking and choosing according to my ideology. I'm saying that, personally and as a mod, I found his comment to be inappropriate.

And no, I don't think it's quite the same as saying, "I'd rather that axe murderers didn't find me attractive." I don't think he meant his comment as an innocent statement of personal preference. I don't know this for sure, but taking into context his earlier posts, I don't feel uncomfortable at all having asked him--very civilly and respectfully--to be mindful of the fact that we do have gay post-ers who frequent this forum.

My comment requires no further justification, and this is the last time I'll discuss it in this thread.

Thanks.
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Old 04-08-2005, 11:18 AM   #40
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Originally posted by Abomb-baby
I know people in the military now who are gay, but they are women. I personally don't have any other issues with gay men serving other than showering/ living with someone who might view me as sexually desirable. But that is a HUGE issue!!
Well, what about lesbians in the military, then? Would you consider it legitimate cause for banning them if some straight servicewomen objected to showering/living with a woman who might find them sexually desirable? Or do you see male sexual desire as inherently more menacing, and therefore a more serious issue?
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Old 04-08-2005, 11:37 AM   #41
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The military and its rules, especially around "don't ask, don't tell," are a reflection of American society. It's highly idealistic to think they can show leadership on this issue when the President himself was advocating repressive anti-gay amendments in the constitution (i.e. against same-sex marriage). The intolerant atmosphere in the U.S. against homesexuals has to start changing...eventually the military will have to follow (i hope).
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Old 04-08-2005, 05:12 PM   #42
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This is a very difficult issue. Take, for example, the whole atmpshere of being in querters day after day, week after week, month after month, where, in an ideal atmosphere, the talk about "boyfriends" and convivial jokes about "queens" etc, just something so simple as that, running freely with the conversation about wives, girlfriends, kids etc etc might create, eventually, an atmosphere that people, from, say, the afrementioned bigoted South would find uncomfortable. Because for them, what this casual open contact would create is an atmpshere of informal acceptance. Normalization. And pretty soon, in an "ideal" world, they'd be socially mixing, with the actual relationships aspect relgated to the background, and with enough of this conviviality, and daily exposure to people who (shock!) MAY have the grace to act with tact and delicacy regarding others, would in turn break down barriers to other aspects of the gay issue. Hatred is caused by fear, and once the frear vanishes, the hatred goes as well. This is what happened with the civil rights struggle, and in South Africa, among the protesters.

IN an ideal world, perhaps, this would happen..but being in a military barracks, or on a ship, or in headquarters, is NOT the aame as going home to Main Street, USA or the suburb of Green Hills, and being able to transplant this ideal state there, to the home community. And many are afraid that that is what may eventually happen, in miniature.

What happened between newly integrated military untis in WWII and Korea eventually happened in the rest of American society. It is perhaps inevitable.

And THAT is what the Bushies are afriad of. The miltary is perhaps living in a "fantasy" state (as all war is perhaps a "fantasy" world, if you see what I mean), but the social units that survive ling after the milirary campaign are over, are not. And they do not want to see a covert, slow but inexorable process of social de-stigmatization being the harbringer of things to come.
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Old 04-08-2005, 08:56 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
the reason: he fears for their safety. like it or not, there are many areas in this country where being gay is possibly the worst thing you can be, aside from a child molestor (and often the two are horribly conflated). they would see nothing wrong with gay bashing. this doesn't make it right, this doesn't make it fair, but he says it's a reality.
Good point to consider-I don't doubt that would indeed be a problem. Course, then again, if we made it so that there were tough punishments for those who do abuse others based on their sexuality, or their gender, or their race, or their religion, or whatever else ('cause all those other things would make people just as easy a target for abuse from other soldiers, but yet we allow them in), and made sure those punishments were enforced...that might help matters.

Anywho, yeah, I do think it's stupid that people aren't allowed to serve simply because they're gay (so people might be uncomfortable around them-isn't that their issue to deal with, not the gay person's?). They could be some of the best soldiers we'll ever have in our miltary, but since they're gay, apparently that's the more important issue at hand? 'Kay, whatever.

Angela
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Old 04-09-2005, 07:11 AM   #44
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the real irony, though, is that a larger-than-you'd-think percentage of the armed forces are gay. like, probably twice as much as the population as a whole. wesley clark said that he didn't know any gay people until he went into the military, and my coast guard friend said there was a reason why they referred to all of the senior officers as "the happy brass."

seriously, lots of guys go into the military precisely because it is a homosocial environment, and it's also a great way to keep closeted, since who would ever suspect a military man of being gay?
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Old 04-09-2005, 06:28 PM   #45
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There are so many stereotypes that are tired, irrelevant, and ridiculous. I admire every soldier who serves his/her country so bravely. I think it's very sad that some have to hide who they are.

Seems to me it's straight men in the military who can't control themselves-Tailhook, the rapes at the Air Force Academy - it goes on and on.

If I was a female in the military I'd be afraid of the straight men, not the gay women.
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