Lt Dan Choi, discharged under DADT, asks that we follow him on Twitter as he attempts to re-enlist in the USMC at the recruiting station in New York City: http://twitter.com/ltdanchoi
The Pentagon announced today that gay recruits will be accepted at stations across the country, although their legal status might change:
The Pentagon is instructing military recruiters to accept the applications of gays and lesbians who wish to join the military, but must inform potential recruits that a moratorium on "don’t ask, don’t tell" could be lifted at any moment.
The guidance issued to military recruits is consistent with the Defense Department’s plans to abide by a federal judge’s injunction on the 17-year ban on gays in the military. The Pentagon advised senior military leaders late last week not to ask service members or military applicants about their sexual orientation, to treat the rank and file with dignity and respect and maintain good order and discipline.
Despite the guidance to military recruits, the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, a group representing service members impacted by the gay ban, cautioned gays and lesbians against applying for military service while the policy remains in legal limbo.
"The bottom line: if you come out now, it can be used against you in the future by the Pentagon," said SLDN executive director Aubrey Sarvis.
From the Advocate:
Choi tweeted on Tuesday that he is "Headed to Times Square Recruiting Station" and told The Advocate he expects to meet gay rights advocate David Mixner at the recruiting office as well as Justin Elzie, who was honorably discharged under DADT in 1997.
"As we say in the military, this is a target of opportunity, " Choi said. "It’s an opportunity for me to serve in whatever capacity that I can. And I’m going to go try to do that."
Sources said other service members discharged under DADT may seek to reenlist Tuesday as well.
The Pentagon spokeswoman, Cynthia Smith, said the Defense Department has suspended enforcement of DADT. Military recruiters, however, have been advised to inform potential recruits that the moratorium against DADT could be lifted.