On June 9th, Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced that gay and lesbian troops for the first time will be protected from discrimination by the same equal opportunity policy that protects other service-members. Just three weeks later the Supreme Court made a historic ruling, legalizing same-sex marriage across the United States. For some in the military, these changes seem to have occurred overnight and for others they have been long overdue.
Will everyone be supportive of homosexuals’ public display of affection in uniform?
For the first time in the 39 years that the Annual Capital Pride parade has occurred a military color guard marched in the parade. The parade was held earlier this month and the Color Guard was invited by the leaders of OutServe, an organization of gay military service men and women — who have been able to serve openly since 2011. According to the Washington Post, they “say this is the first time an armed services color guard has led a [gay] pride parade in the country.”
In 2012, The Department of Defense allowed service members to march in uniform in a gay pride parade for the first time in U.S. history. The Pentagon issued a military-wide directive saying it was making an exception to its policy that generally bars troops from marching in uniform in parades. The Pentagon said the exception was only for that year’s gay parade in San Diego and did not extend beyond that.
During yesterday’s pride parade in New York City, a male NYPD officer was recorded dancing with another gentleman. Is it okay for officers to dance on other’s genitals in uniform? If so, this officer has done nothing wrong and gender would never be the deciding factor for guilt, but for a nation adjusting to change it can still be seen as offensive for some.
This photo of a Soldier raising a rainbow flag on a U.S. Army base in Afghanistan stirred up a heated debate on social media.
Whether everyone is ready or not, change is here and it is not going anywhere. As long as these photos are okay in uniform…
…these will be too.