In an op-ed published in Tuesday's New York Times, John M. Shalikashvili, retired Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says Congress should give "serious reconsideration" to "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," the ban on openly lesbian, gay and bisexual military personnel. Shalikashvili, who supported the ban on open service in 1993, writes that "I now believe that if gay men and lesbians served openly in the United States military, they would not undermine the efficacy of the armed forces," and goes on to say that "Our military has been stretched thin by our deployments in the Middle East, and we must welcome the service of any American who is willing and able to do the job."
"'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' is out of step with both the American public and those within our armed forces," said C. Dixon Osburn, executive director of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN). "The counsel of military leaders increasingly supports repeal of the law. Congress must, as General Shalikashvili urges, consider the overwhelming evidence of the past fourteen years. If they do, the clear answer is that we must lift the ban."
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