For a moment there, I forgot what planet we are on. Last time I checked I was living on planet earth – but former Marine general John Sheehan seems to be stuck in a parallel dimension where demeaning gay-bashing comments are socially acceptable.
I am not a member of the LGBT community, but I was Outraged (yes – that’s Outraged with a capital “O”) to see reports of Sheehan giving testimony before the U.S. Congress that pegged Dutch troops failures to prevent the Srebrenica massacre to The Netherland’s acceptance of openly-gay individuals in the military.
As the Los Angeles Times reported:
Sheehan opposes President Obama’s pledge to lift the ban on openly homosexual soldiers, and tried to cite the Dutch as an object lesson.
But he triggered outrage on both sides of the Atlantic with the suggestion that incorporating openly gay troops had helped dilute the Dutch army’s battle-readiness, which in turn facilitated the mass killing of 8,000 Bosnian men and boys by Serb forces in Srebrenica in 1995, during the war in the Balkans. The massacre came to symbolize the barbarity of the conflict.
Sheehan’s remarks are so repulsive I am actually sitting here simultaneously typing and sputtering (and that’s on top of the coffee I spit on my keyboard when I first read the story!).
I mean, there is just so much wrong with that I hardly know where to begin. Apparently, being gay makes you less of a person. Being gay makes you less sensitive to those around you. Less able to wield a gun. So I guess that means gays are just asking for the vitriol spewed at them by narrow-minded fools too. Oh, and, yeah, I guess it’s their fault every time someone contracts HIV/AIDS too.
Of course I wholeheartedly support Sheehan’s right to free speech and personal opinion. He is a human being like I and you are, and, as such, is entitled to live his life the way he deems best. We are all entitled to our individual beliefs – and to share them with others who feel the same. But his comments amount to slander on pretty much every member of the human race.
Essentially Sheehan is saying that you – gay, not gay, black, white, green, Muslim, Jew, Christian – don’t have the right to be who you are without him being able to pass judgment on your private life.
So what’s next – whites shouldn’t be paratroopers because they can’t jump as high as blacks? Atheists can’t be Americans because the pledge of allegiance mentions God?