Answers to Tough Questions?

Once upon a time, in a job long long ago, I went to my boss with a question that had two answers and both were in the middle of a political minefield. He answered simply, "Dennis if the answer was easy, they could hire someone at a lower pay grade or rank to solve it." This answer hit me today when I discussed the question of Gays in the Military as the President is facing phasing out the "Don't ask, Don't tell" guide.

I have served with and supervised people that were homosexuals. I have a relative that is in a gay relationship. Finding the answer to a tough question is a road that should be traveled with a squad of engineers looking for mines well out ahead of the main body. I often tread roads less traveled and fraught with peril.

Barb's first response about the question was concerning the fact that I served in the Military prior to having women widely assigned to units. There was a time when in training, you dug a hole if you went to the bathroom or just used a bush close by to take a leak. Having women in our units just confused the heck out of that. Instead of just providing Ammunition and food to units, it took one person to schedule the porta potties. Instead of taking off your clothes and taking a bath out of your helmet, we were forced to schedule runs to the Shower points.

Let me be the first one to tell you that one thing we need to avoid is letting the "Old Guys" make the decision about what will work. I would advise building teams from the lower enlisted grades and work on the answer from there. The older and higher in rank soldiers get, the less they want to listen to the winds of change. In fact, it might not be a problem at all to the soldiers while the leaders struggle looking for answers to questions that don't exist.

This change is a lot like the integration of the Military. There were all sorts of people that said it would not work. After time, working with soldiers of any race became the norm. We also made the change to having women in our units. I think that having people with same sex partners will work out and in the end not be a problem once someone stands up in front and issues the march order.

It isn't like the Israeli Air Defense motto of "Shoot them all down and let God sort them out".


1 comment:

  1. MUD, I think you're on to something with letting the younger men/women work this one out.

    As you know, my oldest son is Air Force (Chinese Linguist), and my #3 son is Army Reserve. They both serve with men and women that are pretty well obviously gay.

    It's not an issue with them. But, it sure could be with some less than tolerant 20-somethings. I've pondered this one for ages. I go back and forth between "It'll be just fine," and "the gay guys might get bashed," and "some straight guy's not gonna trust the queer next to him," etc.

    You are probably right...let those kids of "a certain generation" figure out what works for them the best.

    And, as you know, the Israelis have allowed open gays to serve for many, many years.

    I've got some thoughts about budget cutting in the military from your previous post, but I'll have to get back to it later.

    Thanks for your thoughts on this MUD. Good grub to chew on.