White House Significantly Weakens Website Language On Repealing Donâ€™t Ask Donâ€™t Tell
AmericaBlog’s John Aravosis notes significant edits made recently to the Civil Rights page on the whitehouse.gov website that seem to signal “a shift in policy, and a backward step from a clear campaign promise” to repeal the military’s discriminatory “don’t ask don’t tell” (DADT) policy. The website used to emphasize Obama’s firm commitment to repealing the discriminatory policy:
President Obama agrees with former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff John Shalikashvili and other military experts that we need to repeal the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. The key test for military service should be patriotism, a sense of duty, and a willingness to serve. Discrimination should be prohibited. The U.S. government has spent millions of dollars replacing troops kicked out of the military because of their sexual orientation. Additionally, more than 300 language experts have been fired under this policy, including more than 50 who are fluent in Arabic. The President will work with military leaders to repeal the current policy and ensure it helps accomplish our national defense goals.
However, after changes apparently made last night, the previous full, earnest paragraph was slashed to one half of a sentence promoting only “changing” the law “in a sensible way”: