Dan Choi | Don't Ask, Don't Tell | Military | New York | News

Watch: Lt. Dan Choi Talks to CNN About Being Back in Uniform

Blitzer_choi

Lt. Dan Choi shows what an amazing spokesman he has become not only for gays and lesbians, but for those in the military, in this interview with Wolf Blitzer on CNN.

Choi, as you may have heard, was recently asked to return to drill by his commander in the National Guard. He is not, as some have reported, in "active duty". Hear his explanation here.

Blitzer asks him if his return to drill has caused any of his fellow soldiers to become unncomfortable.

Says Choi: "When you assume that people would be uncomfortable and quit you are insulting soldiers in the most treacherous way. I can't believe there are people that are saying a soldier would quit. You want to insult a soldier in the worst way? Tell him he's going to quit. Tell him he's a quitter."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Comments

  1. A great role model to all.

    Posted by: patrick nyc | Feb 11, 2010 7:57:15 AM


  2. He really is my new hero

    Posted by: androjai | Feb 11, 2010 8:30:29 AM


  3. Thank you, sir.

    Posted by: Jude | Feb 11, 2010 8:45:09 AM


  4. What about Victor?

    Posted by: Robert | Feb 11, 2010 9:01:25 AM


  5. gorgeous homosexual asian american. god bless america. and thank you for your service.

    Posted by: zeta | Feb 11, 2010 9:24:46 AM


  6. Another excellent role model!

    Posted by: Warren | Feb 11, 2010 9:57:59 AM


  7. Amazing.

    Posted by: ichabod | Feb 11, 2010 10:26:50 AM


  8. If his goal really is to serve like everyone else, why not just do it and not pursue constant national news coverage?

    Posted by: niles | Feb 11, 2010 10:36:59 AM


  9. A little clarification from Blitzer's comment. Dan wasn't previously told to "stay away," but, as Andy reported earlier via Sue Fulton, a Knights Out gay vet who helps Dan with his heavy schedule of speaking engagements, given the opportunity, as other National Guard members are, of fulfilling his monthly drill obligation by doing office work at various times to accommodate those other demands on his time. GREAT of his commmander, but like this invitation, it has NO official connection with verbal softening of attitudes at the top.

    @ Robert: Not certain exactly what your question was about Victor, but I'll say that Victor is another excellent spokespersooon against the ban. We don't see him as often as Dan because [and I'm sure Dan regrets not having noted this in the pressure of such interviews], unlike Dan who was not on "active duty" when he outed himself, Victor is STILL on FULL TIME active duty, still awaiting his official discharge [some year and a half since being outed]. As such, he's an even more immediate example of how the presence of an out gay in a unit, this time the Air Force, does NOT ipso facto cause disruption.

    @ Niles: I don't know whether you're a homophobe trolling gay sites to stir shit or one of those actually gay but also actually an asshole here to stir shit.

    Dan is continuing to speak out, barn storming the country raising support for lifting the ban because it's the right thing to do. He, as Victor, has chosen to carry forward the banner first picked up by Leonard Matlovich in 1975 and passed on year after year, decade after decade, to other heroes to continue the fight for LGBT equality. Of course, he could be spending his time asking stupid questions on blogs, but YOU'VE taken up that banner for us.

    @ Everyone else: if you aren't on Dan's or their mailing list, he would appreciate everyone signing the Courage Campaign's "Don't Wait!" letter to Senate Armed Services Committee Chair Carl Levin at:

    http://www.couragecampaign.org/page/s/DontWait

    Posted by: Michael @ LeonardMatlovich.com | Feb 11, 2010 11:55:39 AM


  10. SELL OUT,,NOT A TRUE DADT ADVOCATE IF SO HE WOULD REFUSE TO RETURN TILL ALL COULD COULD BACK,, JUST ANOTHER LGBT MEMBER WHO USED THE COMMUNITY FOR HIS OWN PERSONAL GAIN

    Posted by: the change | Feb 11, 2010 12:48:46 PM


  11. @ The Change: Congratulations! By unanimous vote you win today's "MORON Hat."

    Gigantic institutions like the military aren't changed by BOYCOTTING them....or pouting and holding your breath. That may work with your Mommy but Dan and Victor Fehrenbach are doing the PERFECT thing: proving to the nongay public, Pentagon, and Congress, that the claim that the either 1. the sky will fall, and/or 2. the ground will open up the moment an out gay is allowed in a military unit or on a military base ad naseum is a conscious lie. JUST AS IS their insistence that it will take AT LEAST a year for them to even figure out a way to gather all the king's horses and all the king's men to put Humpty Dumpty er the Armed Forces back together once discharges are stopped.

    All YOU'VE proven is that your Mommy needs to change your diaper because you just had a bad case of explosive verbal diarrhea.

    Posted by: Michael @ LeonardMatlovich.com | Feb 11, 2010 1:43:12 PM


  12. Well, the boycott idea is worth exploring. For instance, I applaud every straight couple who has, to date, pledged to not get married until it's a non-discriminatory institution. I don't think it would work as well with the military, but that doesn't mean it's not worth considering.

    I'd be happy if all gays would refuse to join the military. Then again, I'd be happy if all Americans would refuse to join the military.

    But as long as Americans are joining, I want gay Americans to be free to do so with integrity. And of course, Dan is doing above and beyond good works to see that it happens in our lifetime - in fact, in our pretty immediate future. Kudos to Lt. Dan.

    Posted by: Zlick | Feb 11, 2010 2:25:00 PM


  13. We have had gays in the military in Australia for about 20 years. We don't have special toilets and showers for them. We don't have special barracks for them. They are sensitive enough not to partake in offensive behavior when on duty anywhere and they don't cause dissension amongst their peers.

    Why America has to put their servicemen through this ordeal makes them the laughing stock among Western nations and further highlights the bravery of those having to deal with this hypocrisy every day.

    Bravo for soldiers like Lt. Choi and it's about time the nay-sayers woke up.

    Posted by: chiral | Feb 11, 2010 3:31:02 PM


  14. Chiral (see above)-
    Trust me when I tell you this...You have had gays in the military for more than 20 years. They have ALWAYS been there...just like here in the U.S.A.
    That is what is so frustrating about this entire subject. "Gay" is not a sexual act...its an ORIENTATION. So a young 18 yr old guy, who isnt sexually active, but knows he is attracted to men, and knows he is gay, is still forced to live a lie.
    I know this personally.
    I wish more people would speak up about this and stop focusing on DADT, or gay marriage. The reality is, the discussions are not really about either issue, but whether or not you understand the truth about sexual orientation, and that is part of the human makeup.

    Posted by: Mike | Feb 11, 2010 5:27:21 PM


  15. @Michael - thank you for posting the link to Courage Campaign - I hadn't heard of the "Don't Wait" letter campaign. I'm going to CC's website now to sign it.

    And Lt. Choi really is an inspiration.

    Posted by: Grant | Feb 11, 2010 7:09:38 PM


  16. Mike:

    Seeing you want to be pedantic, gays have been officially welcomed into the Australian armed forces for about 20 years.

    My point is that there has been no difficulty from gays or straights about the change and no special arrangements have been made. This is the opposite of what some US persons are arguing.

    I am gay myself, but not a member of the forces, hence my use of the 3rd person. I know a number of people who were discharged with considerable malice when their sexuality was discovered (prior to the new legislation) and know full well the damage this can cause.

    It seems to me that people will always find a way to treat others poorly, whether it's race, sexuality or the color of your eyes. The problem is not how one lives their life, but how others believe one lead their life.

    Posted by: chiral | Feb 11, 2010 8:39:53 PM


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