Don't Ask, Don't Tell | Eric Alva | Iraq | Patrick Murphy | Pennsylvania

HRC & Servicemembers United Launch "Voices of Honor" Tour to Repeal DADT

SafariScreenSnapz005 The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and Servicemembers United announced today a national "Voices of Honor" Tour to repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Rep. Patrick Murphy (D-PA), a former West Point professor and Iraq War vet, is the lead sponsor of legislation to repeal the unpopular policy that bars LGBT people from serving openly in the United States armed services.

Murphy said, in part:

"Our president, President Barack Obama, has stated that If Congress can get a bill to his desk repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell, he will sign it into law. It is now our job, and my job specifically, to quarterback this through the Congress of the United States to do just that. I can not tell you today how long it's gonna take. All I can tell ya is that paratroopers don't quit, and paratroopers get the job done. To remove Eric_alva honorable, talented and committed Americans from serving in our military is contrary to the values that our military holds dear."

Video of Murphy's speech after the jump.

"Voices of Honor" will make stops in Philadelphia; Trenton; Virginia Beach; Phoenix; Kansas City, MO; Orlando and Tampa and will feature former Marine Staff Sgt. Eric Alva, the first American soldier injured in Iraq, among others. CNN points out that some of those involved were chosen because they're straight, as outreach to other straight soldiers.

Much more video from today's event here.

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  1. I really hate to use Towleroad to self promote, but, this is important:

    Tonight on IN THE LV we are interviweing Lt. Dan Choi, Captain Sue Fulton (Knights Out) AND Cleve Jones. I think we'll get a lot of ground covered.

    8-10pm pst

    PLEASE forgive me for doing this! ;-)

    Posted by: Derek Washington | Jul 8, 2009 7:01:41 PM

  2. And now, for a message from the most august leaders of the Republic:

    President Obama: "Well, ummmmmm, it is really Congress' job to repeal DADT"

    Speaker Pelosi: "We would love to act on this in the House. But we have other priorities right now"

    Senator Reid: "The White House can do it without us. Besides, the House should pass a bill before we do because they always go first on budget legislation, and environmental legislation, and health care legislation. Yeah, pretty much *any* legislation, you want to talk to Pelosi instead of me."

    Posted by: John | Jul 8, 2009 7:09:36 PM

  3. You really have to hand it to (str8) Congressman Murphy for taking responsibility for getting congress to repeal DADT. Show him some love -- contribute to his campaign fund:
    (You can be sure the fundies will use his efforts to let gays into the military against him in the next election!)

    Posted by: Carl | Jul 8, 2009 7:11:55 PM

  4. Yay Murphy!

    As for the straight vets on this tour...I'm all for having straight ally servicemembers speak out on ending DADT, but I'm not exactly sure it helps reduce homophobia when the message is that they're doing it because they can "speak to people who may not be open to speaking to gays, and listening to them."

    Who are these people? I would like to speak to them.

    Posted by: EchoMark | Jul 8, 2009 7:59:51 PM

  5. I don't see why CNN points out several members are straight. Many of those on the tour are GLBT. Of the 6 mentioned by HRC besides PAtrick Murphy, the following 5 are GLBT.
    Eric Alva
    Jarrod Chlapowski
    Alexander Nicholson
    Stephen Vossler
    Joan Darrah

    Alex and Stephen were kicked out because of DADT and Jarrod didn't re-enlist because of it. Alva and Joan retired before he was outed. Genevieve Chase who is the female solider in the CNN clip seems to be straight by how her answer to a question was phrased.

    Posted by: msark | Jul 8, 2009 10:57:53 PM

  6. I am so glad they are starting this tour as another way to push the repeal. Go everyone!
    Let's do this. Thank you Rep. Murphy!

    Posted by: Rann | Jul 9, 2009 10:16:42 AM

  7. I just donated 25 bucks, PLEASE match my donation. We can show our support for our straight allies today ! This may be our only hope to repeal DADT

    Posted by: ty | Jul 9, 2009 1:03:03 PM

  8. All,

    Stephen V. is not gay, according to the Servicemembers United website and his profile on HRC.

    As far as my interview, I am sorry. It was my first interview on this topic and I should have rehearsed. It wasn't the best clip of the interview.

    Some may not agree that straight vets are advocating on behalf of our peers, but I stand by what I said, albeit unclearly... I can talk to and get through to some servicemembers that openly gay people can't. They listen because I'm one of them.

    It's not right, to be sure... but it is what it is. Through all of our voices, united, we will push the military to overturn this discriminatory policy.

    G. Chase

    Posted by: Genevieve Chase | Jul 28, 2009 3:10:43 PM

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