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02 July 2009

Comments

Chris Cruz

How many more brave gay men and lesbians need to be attacked or killed before this horrible policy ends?

And how much longer will black LGBTs stand by in silence will it continues to happen? The second murder of a black gay enlisted man or woman in two years. Silence.

And what black gay man or woman can say they don't have a friend, lover or know someone who was in the service?

I know why there has been so much silence and so many of you. It's time to fight for OUR rights and stop trying to protect people will NOT fight for us.

Chris Cruz, former Airman 2nd Class, USAF

Nathan James

There is a furious thunderstorm going on in Queens as I type, and that is fitting, because the more I hear about this vicious murder, the more my feelings mirror the fury of the weather. I do think that DADT had its role to play in this murder, but even more, the killer or killers probably learned to revile gays and lesbians as part of their upbringing, and the US military's policies towards LGBT servicemembers validated that hatred. It is clear that military culture, to an even greater extent than we find in civilian life, encourages and reinforces homophobia. That this endorsement of bigotry as an instrument of official policy may have led to Provost's horrible demise, is beyond appalling and beneath contempt.

In addition to those who did the actual murder, people in our government who continue to insist that DADT is appropriate, and that gays and lesbians are unfit to serve their country, should be considered accessories before and after the fact. When homophobic policies are put forth by those in charge, it is tantamount to giving people "permission to hate", and if that hate results in murder, well, those who find gays and lesbians unacceptable will say "they shouldn't have been in the military".

Not for nothing, but other countries, most notably Israel's Defense force, has no problem with gays and lesbians serving in their fighting forces. In fact, the IDF expects their LGBT citizems to serve at least some time in their military. Israel is surrounded on all its borders by its enemies, and the IDF has no time for homophobic nonsense. We here in the US could learn a thing or two from them.

The blood of August Provost cries out from the burnt ground on which he was discovered, for us to see to it that our government re-examines its attitudes towards gays in the armed forces. We cannot permit this execution to go unanswered, or the climate of hatred that preciptitated it to remain unchallenged.

We need to mke some thunder and lightning of our own, to answer the thunder of bigotry displayed by Provost's killer(s).

Luther

Well Filner getting involved is excellent hews in this tragedy it will speed up the investigation. He's my parent's rep in San Diego and is one of the best for dealing with the military as he did move some mountains for my pop's with some issues he had with the VA.

ReggieH

I think a full and thorough investigation of this case needs to be made -- and it should be as public as possible, as I'm sure the Military would rather keep this as quiet as they could.

One of the interesting things about this story also is how it points out how 'porous' DADT can be. Seaman Provost was 'out' in cyberspace, and told some of his fellow crew members. I suspect a number of people in the services are violating DADT in quiet ways, and get away with it if their commanding officers don't know or look the other way. It's absurd.

Honut SInti

This is so tragic on some many levels. Did he ever complain to his commanding officer as his sister suggested? Are there any other ways to seek protection from physical harm?

Rick in Kansas

You May Enjoy ...
Black Gay Sailor Killed, Hate Crime Suspected [R20]

You may want to rethink how you label your related links.

Otherwise, thank you for your excellent reporting on this story...

Thanks, got it! Someone else Tweeted me, too. -RM

soulbrotha

It's possible it was solely racially motivated. It's reminiscent of the LaVena Johnson case, a Black soldier in Iraq who was shot in the head and her body (genitals) burned with a flammable liquid. The Army covered up the crime by insisting it was a suicide, but her family has been relentless in finding the truth. Hopefully the Marines won't try to pull the same stunt.

DADT definitely needs to go, but the murderer had his own law going on in his sick mind. If the law against killing another human being couldn't dissuade him, I doubt the removal of DADT would have had much of an impact either.

Carter G

>>>Did he ever complain to his commanding officer as his sister suggested?<<<

That would mean he would be "telling" on his sexuality and grounds for dismissal.

This case shows the horrible situation faced by gays in the armed forces, indeed in society in a homophobic culture. God bless him and his family.

Carter G

>>>If the law against killing another human being couldn't dissuade him, I doubt the removal of DADT would have had much of an impact either.<<<

OH PLEASE.

Some of you people will say or do anything to rationalize the reluctance of the White House and Congress to deal with this. And I know where you're going on because we've gotten into it before. Did you not say before you "didn't care" about DADT? And "what promises" were made. Shame on you.

If the harassment was "racial", hmm, let's see ... he could have reported it and it would have been addressed. And there are PLENTY of black officers at Camp Pendleton, in the Corps and the USN. I don't think they would be reluctant to investigate racist harassment.

Of course DADT wouldn't stop a murderer. Homicide laws don't stop murderers. People drive thru red lights. But if he was being harassed b/c he was gay (read what sister said), if the law weren't there, he would have recourse.

What a piece of work. smh

Jim

Thank you, Nathan James. Beautifully written.

soulbrotha

Carter G,

I'm not sure who you are referring to, but I have never said that "I didn't care about DADT". And I believe that what I said in the past is that there was no *timetable* given for his promises.

How are you so sure that they would have addressed racial harassment so quickly? The protocol is that the soldier reports any problems to his commanding officers. Were they Black? I don't see that information given. They could have been "good ole boys."

I read what his sister said and she says nothing about the nature of the harassment. So no, we don't know if it was his sexuality or his race (or both) until more information becomes available.

And finally, I am not trying to rationalize the White House's actions. I simply provided a different motive. Stop jumping to conclusions. Sheesh.

JoeT

This is what we have because of DADT, situations where people feel justified attacking LGBT.

THEGAYTEKEEPER

SO DO I...THERE ARE TOO MANY OF OUR GAY SOLDIERS BEING TAKEN OUT NOW...

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