The “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy is among the most-debated policies of the last decade.
This morning, President Obama will sign the repeal of the policy.
Historian Nathaniel Frank spent more than ten years conducting academic and field research on gays in the military. His book, Unfriendly Fire: How The Gay Ban Undermines the Military and Weakens America, draws on that research and hundreds of interviews.
In the prologue to his book, he wrote:
“I conducted this research with another central question in mind: Is it possible to view “don’t ask, don’t tell” as the product of anything other than prejudice, defined as ‘blind intolerance?’” Could military necessity truly have dictated that some form of gay exclusion rule must be retained in order to preserve unit cohesion and combat readiness? Could questions of privacy and modesty have made the gay ban reasonable, somehow justifying its discrimination as a proper bow to the cultural expectations of the majority? Is it possible this policy is somehow not ‘anti-gay?’”
Read an excerpt of Unfriendly Fire for the answer to his questions.
A few of Frank’s recent articles, interviews, and reports are listed below:
The Palm Center: Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: Detailing the Damage
CNNPolitics: Commentary: Allow gays to serve openly in military
Fresh Air (NPR): How Gay Soldiers Serve Openly Around the World
Forum with Michael Krasny: Senate Approves “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”
Huffington Post: In Ending DADT, America Comes Out of the Closet
New York Magazine: Tell All: The “unit cohesion” fable