fighting to end
Don't Ask, Don't Tell
He packed away his
Navy uniform, but is still actively serving his
country in Congress, fighting for equal rights for all
in the military.
Sestak, a Democrat representing the 7th Congressional
District of Pennsylvania, spent 31 years serving in
the U.S. Navy and retired a three-star admiral.
On July, 23, 2008, he spoke at the House Armed
Services Committee hearing on a review of Don't Ask,
Don't Tell 15 years after it was introduced as a law.
The congressman was
gracious enough to talk to Gay Military Signal over
the phone on August 1, 2008.
decided to revisit Don't Ask, Don't Tell due in part
because outside surveys have shown that a certain
percentage of men and women in the military are gay.
"I went to war
with these people," said Sestak, who led over
15,000 sailors as a former commander of the George
Washington aircraft carrier group. "How can
I come home and say they don't deserve equal rights
and equal opportunity like everyone else?"
discriminates against Transgender Veterans
The Palm Center at
the University of California, Santa Barbara has
released the findings of a survey, conducted by
Transgender American Veterans Association (TAVA), that
shows that transgender veterans are being turned away
and being mistreated in high numbers by Veterans
Administration medical facilities. The survey,
with 827 transgender veteran participants, was
conducted from December 13, 2007 to May 1, 2008.
This represents a strong sampling from what is
estimated to be approximately 300,000 veterans in the
US who identify as being transgender.
Dr. Jeanne Scheper
Palm Center at the University of
California, Santa Barbara coordinated the report and
Dr. Bonnie Moradi, Associate Professor of Psychology
at the University
of Florida did the analyzing. Dr. Gary
Gates, Senior Research Fellow at the Williams
Institute, University of California
acted as a consultant and provided guidance for
survey. Professors Karl Bryant, PhD, of the State
University of New York, New Paltz, NY
and Kristen Schilt, PhD, of the University
of Chicago, Chicago, IL, wrote the
White Paper report. Notice that four universities in
various parts of the country contributed to the
creation of this report.