Say What We Mean

Seeking to be inclusive by using ''LGBT'' rather than ''gay'' can sometimes exclude the reality of transgender issues

So Tony Perkins, the longtime bigoted mouthpiece for the rabidly anti-gay Family Research Council, was rather apoplectic this past week over the news that a soldier in Afghanistan raised a rainbow flag on the base. That the soldier in question would appear to have been straight — the woman who claims him as her husband actually posted a photo on Facebook of him raising the flag — doesn’t really matter to someone like Perkins, who is both personally and professionally committed to finding the imminent destruction of American civilization in even the smallest displays of gaiety.

”There, in the dusty desert of war, an Army outpost saluted the colors of the homosexual lobby by flying a rainbow flag in place of Old Glory,” said Perkins. ”These displays are an uncomfortable reminder of the open policy that few of the troops support.”

I think it’s pretty well settled by now that Perkins represents the policies that are only supported by a few of the troops these days.

Case in point, in a story first highlighted by Dan Choi and picked up by Instinct magazine’s website, a drill sergeant at Fort Benning, Ga., reportedly engaged in a campaign of homophobic abuse of a soldier he perceived to be gay, including rock throwing, physical choking and firing of blanks at close range. After some straight fellow soldiers “came out” and received the same treatment, the drill sergeant was investigated, he was removed from duty and he appears to be facing some severe repercussions for his bigotry.

Sean Bugg is Editor Emeritus for Metro Weekly.

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