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 title=The Pentagon Working Group has released it's survey on the possibility of repealing the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," policy has been released to the troops.

Inside you'll find an embedded PDF and many screenshots I've uploaded. My hope in posting this is to solicit opinions from the community. There many psychologists, pollsters, lawyers, sociologists, scientists and learned professors and more who frequent this site. People who are far, far more versed than I in the science of poll-taking, information gathering and wordsmithing. I hope they'll use their skills to interpret what they see below.

Breaking as I compiled this is reporting from Politico on some gay rights advocates' reaction to the survey:

"What the survey makes clear is that the anti-gay contingent at DOD has not given up. They don't think this is over."

Reading the survey, I'm inclined to agree, there is something to that.

Fair warning: graphics intensive. It's a modem-choker.

Jen DiMascio reports in Politico:

Some critics of the "don’t ask" policy say that groups backing its repeal have been closed out of the survey process.

"I'm shocked that DOD refused to work with the pro-repeal groups on this. That tells you something. Some of the questions appear designed to elicit negative responses," said Richard Socarides, a senior adviser to former President Bill Clinton on gay issues.

"What the survey makes clear is that the anti-gay contingent at DOD has not given up. They don't think this is over. And they may just be able still to stop or maybe significantly delay repeal. Never underestimate the Pentagon bureaucracy when it comes to this. Just ask Bill Clinton," Socarides said.

There is certainly is much controversy over the survey, with one advocacy group, Servicemember's Legal Defense Network saying they cannot recommend that LGB troops fill this out. And another, Citizens for Repeal, recommending they do. It should be noted, SLDN as their name implies, is a legal defense network, and as such, lawyers will certainly always give you the most conservative advice that best covers you legally. The Pentagon has refused to guarantee immunity from DADT investigations to anyone who is inadvertently or maliciously outed. SLDN is familiar with the DOD's history on such cases.

And this Active Duty gay soldier shares his fear for his anonymity here:

When I [attempted to log-in], I received the message indicating that you must have a certificate to access the website. It was wanting my Common Access Card (CAC) sign in to access the site. I am using my civilian personal laptop so I do not have the proper software installed on my computer to log in with my identification card, as it is not military issued. This raised an issue with me.

After exhaustive writing on this subject, I have to confess. I haven't the strength to pour meticulously over this survey. It seems the ship has sailed and should the legislation survive a Senate filibuster—and a possible veto threat—the opportunity to deliver equal treatment, or deny it, to LGB troops will rest entirely at the discretion of President Obama, Robert Gates and Mike Mullen.

But my impressions are: The framing of the questions begins by mischaracterizing the policy change to the troops:

This law generally requires that a Service member shall be separated if the member is found to have engaged in, or attempted to engage in, homosexual acts.

In fact, all sexual acts, heterosexual or homosexual, in inappropriate settings are forbidden under Uniform Code of Military Justice article 125 and will remain so. The framing suggests the policy change will affect sexual activity in the armed forces. In fact, this is about identity not acts. Merely identifying yourself as being "one of them," is more than sufficient grounds for discharge, even if you are a virgin firmly committed to a celibate life.

The repeated frame of "if" the military repeals DADT continues to raise red flags about the Pentagon's commitment. And the phrase "believe to be a homosexual" have such a McCathyesque feel to them, my heart sank every time I saw it (which was a lot).

Questions like, "Would you stop attending unit parties if you knew a homosexual would be there?" beg the question, "So what?" If every troop decided to stay home from the company picnic, DADT would stay indefinitely? And of course, the shower room is brought up. We can send them off to war with insufficient body armor without a moment's pause, but Lord have mercy, we gotta ask them how they feel about another guy taking a look at their ass.

I feel like our LGB soldiers and repeal advocates have been punked. I feel like, the military is taking this nearly unprecedented move to set policy by survey, has made a grave error. I feel this is really just another way to put LGBT Civil Rights up for a popular vote. "Hey troops, do you think they should be treated equally?" Let's keep pitting the 90% vs. the 10% and see how that comes out. I guess this is the world our community has to live in. But it sucks.

From the Politico report:

"This is an extraordinary initiative," said Aubrey Sarvis, president of the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, saying the military didn’t poll troops when President Truman issued an executive order opening the military to blacks. Again, when women were allowed into the military academies in the 1970s, no survey was issued.

That this survey exists at all is demonstrative of a terrible failure of leadership to show real commitment to the issue of LGBT Civil Rights (affirmed just yesterday in MA district court). Leadership, by definition, leads.

Update 1: Chris Geidner of MetroWeekly has posted a short piece on the divide between advocacy groups and within the LGBT community on the safety of LGB troops participating. He quotes Alex Nicholson, Executive Director of Servicemembers United. While opining the survey is assures adequate anonymity (assuming LGB troops don't actually share anything personal) he takes exception to the tone:

"While it remains safe for gay and lesbian troops to participate in this survey, it is simply impossible to imagine a survey with such derogatory and insulting wording, assumptions, and insinuations going out about any other minority group in the military."

The Scribd pdf is available at Americablog here. It can be downloaded.

These are the relevant pages (10-31) that address the issue LGB troops, embedded at JPGs. You can view them larger here:

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Originally posted to Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:25 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Bigotry is hard to budge (10+ / 0-)

    the wording surprises me not at all.

    Just stay away from my body and my rights, and everything will be just fine. ~LaFeminista Mon May 17, 2010

    by LaFeminista on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:34:03 AM PDT

  •  The ultimate outcome on DADT (9+ / 0-)

    will be an entirely political decision. I'm sure that anything as complicated as this survey can be spun in either direction. IMO the whole process is just a silly delaying action.

    •  We can predict largely who this will (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Richard Lyon, Clarknt67, SRCestavani

      play out: the survey will come back with mixed results.  Even if it tilts highly positive, the Republicans will sift through and find the negatives in order to object to the repeal.  The Democrats will largely focus on the positives.  And it will be, as you say, a completely political decision.

      Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

      by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:52:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  this statement: (8+ / 0-)

    Throughout this survey, "gay or lesbian" and "homosexual" are used interchangeably.

    bothers me.

    mostly, because the majority of time when I hear it used
    is when someone is speaking out against gays and lesbians.

    "Toleration is the greatest gift of the mind; it requires the same effort of the brain that it takes to balance oneself on a bicycle." -Helen Keller

    by ridemybike on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:41:29 AM PDT

  •  The biggest problem with the survey (15+ / 0-)

    is not the wording, although that is certainly a problem.  The biggest problem is the bias among the set of people who respond.

    Let's take a recent example:  60% of the letters received by Governor Engle were against the Hawaiian civil unions bill, but not even close to 60% of Hawaiians are against it.  The religious right was able to exercise its grassroots power in this case to generate more than its share of support.

    Is there any doubt whatsoever that they will do the same here?

    The statistical results of this survey will be total rot.

    •  Yeah, I didn't touch on that (6+ / 0-)

      It does seem they aren't following scientific protocols to ensure a representative sample. So, we will easily be able to see a repeat of the Military Times reader survery vs. the Vote Vet scientific poll.

      Vote Vets was much more encouraging as they attempted to get a representative sample of post-9/11 Veterans. Whereas the the Military Times reader survey was not representative of the military's actual demographics, skewing older and more in favor of long-term, entrenched servicembers, who do not make up the bulk of troops, most of whom serve one or maybe two rounds.

      Trickle down Equality isn't working

      by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:53:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Which is why I don't agree with the advice (5+ / 0-)

      not to fill it out. I appreciate this opportunity to see the questions (Thanks Clark!) but after reading it I'm mystified why they advised people to not participate. There's nothing in there that would identify a person as gay, so they should absolutely fill it out, and answer the questions to indicate that repeal of DADT and serving alongside a G/L service member (interesting they ignore the Bs like we don't exist, but what else is new?) does not negatively effect performance, morale, and whatever else.

      I think this survey is pretty much what I'd expect, and it can just as easily be designed to gather data indicating that repleal would not be a problem. IF a sufficient number of people who feel that way participate. I really don't understand the advice to not do so.

      •  I think the SLDN's concern stems (9+ / 0-)

        from lack of assurances responses will be kept anonymous, and that there are also no assurances that any outings will not result in investigations and discharges.

        Remember, they are the Servicemembers LEGAL Defense Network. They are lawyers, and their job is to protect the servicemembers, legally. They apparently feel their are insufficient legal protections for them to ethically endorse this.

        Trickle down Equality isn't working

        by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:00:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, I read the statement, but (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Cassandra Waites, jpmassar

          I don't think that should stop someone from participating. If it asked: "Are YOU G/L" then yes, obvioulsy that would be a problem.

          I suppose it could be the questions about if they have served with anyone they "believe" is gay, which could theoretically lead to someone identifying the respondent and then asking them to identify who they serve with whom they 'believe' to be gay. But frankly I think that is highly unlikely, and the need to get positive responses on the survey would outweight such a risk if it were me. But of course each person has to weigh their own risks and decide what to do. I just think everyone who would give positive responses should be encouraged to participate to get the best outcome.

          •  Well, as lawyers, you'll note (4+ / 0-)

            their statement is carefully crafted, they did not advise AGAINST filling it out. They declined to RECOMMEND LGB servicemembers fill it out.

            There's a subtle difference, but it's there.

            Trickle down Equality isn't working

            by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:21:19 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Good point... an abundance of caution I guess (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Cassandra Waites, Clarknt67, jpmassar

              but I also think the statement implies they are advising against participating. I also think they did so without benefit of seeing the survey first, because they also say this:

              If a service member still wishes to participate, he or she should only do so in a manner that does not reveal sexual orientation."

              But there is nothing in they survey that would reveal a participant's orientation, unless they volunteered it in one of the open-ended questions, and they all already know they cannot reveal their orientation to the military, so it seems to me that maybe this statement was made without knowing the content of the questions. Or they are just being lawyers. But I still don't agree with the implication that people would be wise to not participate. Just because I think it's very important that as many people as possible who support repeal get their input included.

              •  Unless you are am LGB (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Dem Beans, Clarknt67, FogCityJohn

                service member, that's pretty easy for you to say.

                •  And your point is what? (0+ / 0-)
                  •  That if your life and career (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    vacantlook, Dem Beans, Clarknt67

                    were at stake, you might not be so glib about the matter.

                    •  I'm not glib about it, and I have no idea why you (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      jpmassar

                      would think I am.

                      I have both family members and close friends who are gay service members, and getting DADT repealed is VERY important to them and to me.

                      Everyone here is expressing opinions about this survey and all I said is that I want people to participate to support making that happen.

                      •  You sound glib to me. (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Clarknt67

                        You repeatedly state that there is no plausible reason for LGB service members to be concerned. I think that the reality does not support your assumptions.

                        •  I did NOT say that there was "no plausible reason (0+ / 0-)

                          for service members to be concerned" Read my comments. I said people have to make their own decision.

                          Why don't you write to Servicemembers United and tell them how glib they are?

                          SU Encourages Participation in DADT Survey

                          Servicemembers United, the nation’s largest organization of gay and lesbian troops and veterans, issued a statement today regarding the Pentagon’s release of a survey of 400,000 troops on the impending repeal of the "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell" law.

                          "As part of its mandate from the Secretary of Defense to ‘engage the force’ on the likely repeal of the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ law, the Pentagon’s Comprehensive Review Working Group yesterday released a survey on the issue to 400,000 non-deployed active duty troops," said Alexander Nicholson, Executive Director of Servicemembers United and a former U.S. Army interrogator who was discharged under "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell." "While Servicemembers United remains concerned about unintentional bias in the question wording within this survey, we are satisfied that sufficient measures are in place to protect the confidentiality of any gay and lesbian servicemember who would like to fully and honestly participate in this survey."

                          Nicholson added, "Servicemembers United encourages all gay and lesbian active duty troops who received the survey to take this important opportunity to provide their views. We especially encourage gay and lesbian troops to take advantage the opportunity at the end of the survey to participate in a confidential chat about issues related to being gay or lesbian in the U.S. military."

                          •  I thought you had left. n/t (0+ / 0-)
                          •  Too bad for you, I'm back. I read the statement (0+ / 0-)

                            from Servicemembers United -- who happen to agree with me -- and thought some people might care. Obviously you're more interested in acting like a jerk than any real world information. However, once again, from my above comment:

                            But frankly I think that is highly unlikely, and the need to get positive responses on the survey would outweight such a risk if it were me. But of course each person has to weigh their own risks and decide what to do.

                            You were blatently dishonest about what I said and you owe me an apology. Of course I know I wont' get one.

                          •  I simply said that you seem inclinded to be (0+ / 0-)

                            dismissive of the concerns and anxieties and LGB service members. Daily Kos is a site for political debate. That means that people disagree with each other. I did not express my disagreement with you in a personally abusive or derogatory manner. Simply because someone disagrees with you political opinions is no reason to demand and apology.

                            You are correct that you will not get one from me.

                    •  I also really don't understand why some people (0+ / 0-)

                      here are so freakin rude and hateful. It really pisses me off, so I'm outta here.

              •  BUT! (7+ / 0-)

                there is nothing in they survey that would reveal a participant's orientation

                There is an "anything else?" box.

                Unless the service member wanted to explain in their own words, sharing personal stories of the hardship this policy visits on their life. How the lying and hiding affects their morale and feelings of cohesion with other troops. How expensive it is to relocate their family solely at their own expense. How much they worry about their partner not receiving word if they are hurt or injured.

                All topics they cannot share. But a bigot is free to fill this in with "I don't want no gays at the company picnic near my kids!"

                Trickle down Equality isn't working

                by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:36:34 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Ergo: DADT STILL acts as a severe impediment (4+ / 0-)

                to accurate information gathering. Despite Sen Claire McCaskill's drawing Adm. Mullen's attention to it back in February, and his assurances he's address it.

                Trickle down Equality isn't working

                by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:43:46 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

      •  Likewise. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Cassandra Waites, Clarknt67, CS in AZ

        I respect SLDN immensely, but their first priority is to protect servicemembers from legal liability.  This survey requires them to make a leap of faith, but I think it's a necessary one (again, easy to say from my non-military perspective.)

        Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

        by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:02:29 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Right is right, wrong is wrong. (6+ / 0-)

    This whole "wait for the report" tactic was a mistake.  Why defer leadership on this issue if you believe ending DADT is the right thing to do?  Why defer leadership to a report yet unwritten that could be manipulated?

    •  Yeah. I Find Folks Often Make Things (6+ / 0-)

      more complex then they need to be. Clearly there are a few percentage of people serving in the military that are gay. I think everybody can agree that is just a fact. Repealing DADT won't change anything, other then a person serving with honor maybe won't be worried about being seen with their partner in public. Writing an email from Iraq telling a same sex partner they love them. Why there has to be months and months of study just makes no sense.

      "In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." - George Orwell

      by webranding on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:54:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  This is the Obama method of doing things: (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Psyche, webranding

        bring everyone to the table, make sure everyone agrees, etc.  It's not a bad method, it just means that some issues get drawn out indefinitely until he figures out that Republicans aren't willing to work with him, and next thing you know, he's making recess appointments.

        Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

        by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:01:10 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It Is Like Tearing Off A Bandaid (6+ / 0-)

          You just do it fast and get it over with. Obama knows (or should) he will be attacked if he repeals DADT. So you just repeal the thing get attacked and move on. You don't let it sit out there for months and months.

          "In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." - George Orwell

          by webranding on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:04:16 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  And he'll still be attacked, even if/when (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Clarknt67

            the repeal goes through smoothly.  Even if/when the Pentagon supports him.  There's no real political 'win' there that isn't already connected to the people who voted for him in the first place.

            Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

            by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:13:16 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  It works in contexts were there exist (4+ / 0-)

          the possibility of people finding real common ground if they can calm down and listen to each other. The American culture wars are a classical example of a situation where there is no common ground to be found. I find it difficult to take anybody seriously who is claiming to look for it.

        •  I personallly disagree there is common ground (10+ / 0-)

          and compromise to be found between a citizen have equality under the law and the people who seek to oppress and deny that equality.

          Some things are black and white.

          You are equal in the eyes of the law, or you are inferior or lesser. It's like pregnancy that way.

          So, compromising on such issues, is really handing the game over to people who seek to oppress.

          Trickle down Equality isn't working

          by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:08:45 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Well, I'm not talking about compromising per se, (0+ / 0-)

            because he never offered up any kind of compromise on repeal itself, just on the means of doing so: should we do this with the support of the Pentagon or not?  I'm fully in agreement that civil rights shouldn't be left up to a vote (ugh) or as a bargaining chip (double ugh), but for better or worse the President's been operating on this idea that if you bring people to the table, you can get them to act reasonably.  Whether that kind of approach is going to yield any long term dividends is still up in the air, but the unwillingness of Republicans to play along doesn't bode well.

            Ya know, the funny thing is, for all the critiques of the President that his policies have shown some kind of incrementalist/pragmatic logic to them, his actual sit-down-and-talk approach has been idealistic, what with this persistent "Surely people will be reasonable" attitude.

            Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

            by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:17:12 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well I am talking about compromise (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Richard Lyon, FogCityJohn, skip945

              since you brought it back to Obama's style of leadership of seeking compromise, including everyone's voice and finding common ground. Which may well explain his approach to LGBT issues, but also explains why it's probably where his most dissatisfied contingency is.

              The philosophy is at odds with Civil Rights. Jim Crow was a compromise between full civil rights and slavery. And we rightfully decided that wasn't good enough.

              Trickle down Equality isn't working

              by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:25:08 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I don't see where I used 'compromise' (0+ / 0-)

                anywhere in that first comment: bringing everyone to the table isn't the same as conceding to everyone's demands, and you may remember that we're going forward with this DADT plan despite near-complete Republican opposition.  We brought them to the table, they said no dice, and we're moving ahead without them.

                For what it's worth, Jim Crow was a bad compromise.  The Civil Rights act was not.

                Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

                by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:32:35 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Well, you're stuck on a word (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  FogCityJohn

                  bring everyone to the table, make sure everyone agrees

                  "compromise" is the method we use to get everyone to agree. It's the goal when you bring "everyone to the table."

                  We brought them to the table, they said no dice, and we're moving ahead without them.

                  True of GOP, not so true of resistance to Murphy's orginal bill. Not all resistance comes from the GOP, alas. But it seems resistance is compromised with.

                  Trickle down Equality isn't working

                  by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:41:15 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  That's ultimately the question (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Clarknt67

                    when you bring people together over disagreement: do you concede, or do you try to persuade them over to your side?  In this case I don't think anything other than method/responsibility was conceded, and I was glad (at least) to get Congress as much out of the decision-making process as possible - Congress is where concessions do get made.  The main drawback is the long process we're dealing with now.

                    Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

                    by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:44:38 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  That is true of the here and now (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      pico, FogCityJohn

                      I don't think anything other than method/responsibility was conceded

                      We'll just have to wait and hope for the best. Because there is no disincentive for them to roll out DADT-Lite, and no leverage to push back on it.

                      It's all faith now.

                      Trickle down Equality isn't working

                      by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:46:54 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  When it comes to equality under the law (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Clarknt67, FogCityJohn

                      You don't screw around with regressive dinosaurs. You tell them that they're in the minority, to sit down, STFU, and you move along with progress.

                      Or at least, that's what a real leader would do.

                      When are you going to understand that being normal is not necessarily a virtue? It rather denotes a lack of courage. - Practical Magic

                      by Keori on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 12:20:03 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  If you think (0+ / 0-)

                      concessions don't get made during administrative rulemakings, then you are not well informed.  Homophobes inside the Pentagon will be able to influence the process of writing any "repeal" regulations.  And this survey's existence and language is evidence that they've got plenty of clout.

                      Maladie d'Amour, Où l'on meurt d'Aimer, Seul et sans Amour, Sid'abandonné

                      by FogCityJohn on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 05:24:03 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

            •  Beg to differ (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Richard Lyon, Clarknt67

              There most certainly may be compromise on the repeal itself.  The statute gives the Pentagon the authority to draft such regulations as it sees fit to implement any "repeal."  Those regulations need not permit LGB servicemembers to serve openly.  The so-called "repeal" statute as it currently exists has excised Murphy's original non-discrimination language.  

              Thus, there is absolutely nothing in the law that will prohibit the Pentagon from compromising on the actual subject matter of "repeal."  Since most people view a "repeal" of DADT to mean that LGBs will be allowed to serve openly in the military, they should realize that open service may indeed be compromised away.  Having removed any language that would prohibit the Pentagon from discriminating against LGB servicemembers, the Congress has left the fox in charge of this henhouse.

              Maladie d'Amour, Où l'on meurt d'Aimer, Seul et sans Amour, Sid'abandonné

              by FogCityJohn on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 04:54:01 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  And As A Straight Dude You Just (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            sfbob, Clarknt67

            wrote out the only talking point that needs to be said. If you believe like most sane people a person doesn't choose their sexual orientation then this issue could not be more black and white. I have no idea why I am attracted to women. Just the way I am wired is my only conclusion. I have to think that folks that are attracted to people of the same sex are the same.

            That a gay person has less and/or different rights then myself just cause straight folks like myself are in the majority .... well I don't see how you argue that point and not get laughed out of the room.

            "In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." - George Orwell

            by webranding on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:19:13 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  And at the end of the day no one's happy (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Richard Lyon, FogCityJohn

          segregated barracks would still be unequal treatment, and any, any, walk-back of DADT will still enrage the Fundies. Neither side wins.

          Trickle down Equality isn't working

          by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:10:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  McChrystal proved that the military can make (0+ / 0-)

      a President's life miserable, even if he is ultimately the boss.  They rolled Clinton when he tried to repeal it.  Entrenched bureaucracies demand tribute.

      "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

      by Geekesque on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:18:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Wow. Just wow. (4+ / 0-)

    They're really obsessed with sharing a shower with 'homosexuals'. Did Sam Nunn write this?

    I agree that the usage of this word is disturbing.  I usually only hear myself referred to as a 'homosexual' by anti-gay preachers and bigots.

    If the survey itself can be tracked back to the service member, how many gay-friendly straights would answer down the line with gay-friendly answers?  How many would wonder if they themselves might come under suspicion and just say sod it, I won't fill this out - leaving only the anti-repeal crowd to answer it?

    you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows

    by Dem Beans on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:49:26 AM PDT

  •  Punked? Well .. that's a nasty way of putting it (6+ / 0-)

    but yeah.

    The problem is that there is a desperation for two things .. the Democratic Party, liberals in general and supporters of the President are desperate to see that this administration can claim it's made significant progress on gay rights, without actually paying any political price or debate or animosity from the homophobic sect.  Saying they "tried" (even if they didn't try) is as good as saying they did.

    They're also desperate to be seen to be doing something without having actually done much of anything, particularly angering the entrenched military that doesn't want to really answer to civilian leadership.  There's a desire this thing really not get out of control and reveal a military that views civilian leadership as a joke.

    As we have seen this desperation on many sides -- we have had people who are normally sympathetic to LGBT rights even on this site claiming that DADT is gone or near to be gone, despite pointing out that claiming DADT is gone before people stop being discharged is dangerous, untrue and inappropriate to the people involved.

    They in the administration and in liberal circles didn't want to do anything  -- or more precisely they didn't want to fight and possibly pay a price.  They just want to say they did and wash their hands of the whole thing.  And anything that can be used as a sticking point will be.  Like falling off the edge of a cliff and grabbing onto a tuft of grass.

    Hence the survey and its nature.

    "When in doubt, be ruthless" - Ferengi saying (-6.62, -6.26)

    by AndyS In Colorado on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:50:46 AM PDT

    •  Nothing short of repeal (6+ / 0-)

      of DADT and allowing LGB members of the military to serve openly is progress on this issue. In this case "we tried" isn't enough.

      I'm sick of having my rights put up for a popular vote. We have a government that is specifically designed to protect minorities from the tyranny of the majority and that duty has all been but abdicated in the desire to keep from being held accountable.

      If you're not going to do the right thing, then get the hell out of the way so someone who is willing to do the right thing can work.

      When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

      by Cali Techie on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:22:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  EXACTLY!!!! (3+ / 0-)

        that duty has all been but abdicated in the desire to keep from being held accountable.

        You saw it well-demonstrated on Tuesday when Lingle said she vetoing equality so the people could decide by popular vote.

        No one person wants to be held accountable for denying or delivering to the gay community. Let's let people decide in the privacy of a voting booth, behind a sheet.

        Trickle down Equality isn't working

        by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:28:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Well, they aren't doing the right thing. They're (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dem Beans, Cali Techie, Keori

        not going to do the right thing.  And we so can't believe they won't do the right thing, and that they're doing everything possible to avoid doing the right thing, that we're analyzing the intent of the survey, rather than seeing what it is -- which is an attempt to get the military to appear to hold its breath and turn blue and say, "but gays are icky!  I won't serve with the gay!  I won't!"

        If they had any intent of doing this they wouldn't have had this survey at all.  They wouldn't have put the shower and barracks questions in.  This is Sam Nunn all over again talking about men in submarines.

        What I predict is this:  The gay community is going to see, DADT repeal slip totally away.  Obama will issue some directive which is a further compromise that actually changes nothing on the ground again.  Liberals will claim victory; people who object to the new compromise are going to be called recalcitrant and militant.  And a consensus will emerge to wait ten years and see how this NEW compromise will work out.  And another round of STFU and wait will ensue -- for 10 years.

        I'm sorry this is unpleasant but this is what I predict will happen with the way things are going.  Because what is happening is that we're wanting to believe people have our best interests at heart and we're unwilling to say this is a total sham designed to short circuit justice.

        "When in doubt, be ruthless" - Ferengi saying (-6.62, -6.26)

        by AndyS In Colorado on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:35:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You're more pessimistic than I am (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Richard Lyon, sfbob

          but your scenarios could well transpire.

          Trickle down Equality isn't working

          by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:45:26 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I find it pretty easy to envision (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Cali Techie, sfbob, Clarknt67

            it being dragged out passed the 2012 election.

            •  The only problem with that (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Cali Techie

              and I guess we've seen how out of touch the admin is with the LGBT community, is if discharges are still going on during his re-election campaign, that will be a real headache for him. It was the lowest hanging fruit. I don't think the community will be forgiving of the witch hunts continuing.

              Trickle down Equality isn't working

              by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:53:04 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I'm sure that the community won't. (4+ / 0-)

                I was thinking about the prospects that DADT could endure indefinitely. If they do drag it out that long, there is the possibility that we have a Republican administration in 2013 and they would certainly bury it.

                If Obama were really concerned about maintaining the support of the LGBT community he would not be proceeding as his has.

                •  I'm trying to remember --- (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  AndyS In Colorado, Clarknt67

                  Didn't Obama send out a trial balloon last year that DADT would be a 'second term' issue?  I remember thinking at the time that if he did put it off, he might not win enough gay votes to get that second term - unless it was a way to box us into voting for him vs a Republican who would never repeal.  I was shocked at the cynicism.  I'm pretty sure it was about DADT, feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

                  you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows

                  by Dem Beans on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 12:04:51 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I have lost track of all the inuendo and rumor. (3+ / 0-)

                    He is clearly putting delaying tactics ahead of conclusive action. Since there will be no magic moment when all of the parties tearfully embrace each other and march off hand in hand into the sunset, I can't easily envision an end to the delays.

                    •  Endgame. People who delay and frustrate gay (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Dem Beans, Cali Techie, Clarknt67

                      rights, for whatever reason, are never unique or clever.

                      They go with what works.

                      What works for delaying for years or decades is to confuse the issue and divide the liberal base from the gay community.

                      So the best thing for Obama to do, not apparently wanting anything to change -- and if you look at the behavior of his administration, he actually does not want to undo DADT, he just wants to speak of civil rights in nice speeches that unite things for him, politically -- is to create a new compromise that looks good and that enables mainstream liberals to claim things are better, or at least wait and see, and still sleep at night.

                      What one knows about this is the good parts will not be followed, will be forgotten, while the bad parts of the new compromise will grow into rigorously enforced military policy.

                      "When in doubt, be ruthless" - Ferengi saying (-6.62, -6.26)

                      by AndyS In Colorado on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 12:21:23 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                  •  I don't recall that coming out of the WH (0+ / 0-)

                    and I'm pretty sure I would have heard that, it would have been a pretty huge disclosure and reverberated, had it actually come FROM the admin.

                    What I remember was Kerry Eleveld reporting from the Advocate and other people corroborating it, that a meeting was held 2 days after the SOTU address and Jim Messina told Joe Solomnese and other repeal advocates the Pentagon had taken Repeal off the table for the 2010 session. Follow-up reporting was that this had been a deal Obama struck with the Pentagon (in exchange for what? I don't think it was revealed.)

                    Of course, our handicapping revealed that delaying it until after the midterms, would almost certainly delay it to term two (presuming). The vote in the House did not have 40 or 50 votes to spare. It's unlikely, with a smaller majority next year, they could have made the lift.

                    Trickle down Equality isn't working

                    by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 12:24:36 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  I discussed this with a friend last night (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Dem Beans, Clarknt67

                    It seems to me that we're over a barrel. While I generally find my peers to be pretty well-informed on matters political, my survey is skewed due to where I live. My friends generally think "well when the next election comes along, what the hell are we supposed to do? If we stay at home we lose automatically, and it would be insane to vote for a Republican. So we vote for Obama, albeit with far less enthusiasm than we did in 2008." I have no doubt however that there are plenty of low-information voters in our community who will vote reflexively against an incumbent without giving much thought to what the opponent is likely to do to them once in office. And that is certainly a scary scenario.

          •  DADT was originally DADTDP (4+ / 0-)

            (don't pursue).  The DP part was lost, of course, in translation, which is why the policy actually wound up being more oppressive on many measures than what came before.

            Why would we assume lessons from 1993 weren't learnt?

            Bill Clinton lifted the policy and opposition appeared among "Conservative Democrats" as well as Republicans.  With too little signs of active opposition, now opposition is literally being manufactured out of thin air.

            When you look at these questions, how many he-man military dudes actually might be uncomfortable showering with or sleeping next to someone they envision came right out of the set of La Cage Au Folles?

            The reason you ask these questions is to create discomfort, to turn comfort into actual opposition.  None of it is about soliciting actual attitudes or how it would play out in real life.  Surveys are not always innocent; their intent is not always to see a reality but are sometimes meant to create a reality that did not exist before.

            They could not magically get 1993 to happen again, so a natural and almost inevitable conclusion is, they had to find a stealthy, above-board appearing way to make it happen again.

            Then there's the actual proposal, which is not to repeal DADT at all, right down to not even changing the wording, but to put it in the hands of Mullen, Gates and Obama.

            And we know what Obama's (or his administration's, with no difference) history is with gay rights.  He has at all times wanted the appearance of being open to the gay community, but not wishing to actually give much of anything.  He wants to be able to speak in grandiloquent terms about rights for everybody and doesn't want to give that up, but when push comes to shove, you find out they in the administration did as little as possible and sometimes actually fought an advancement that would take place without them.

            So, I am not sure what part of my pessimism is unwarranted, in that it takes into account the past behavior and desires of all parties.  The liberals, too, want to claim victory on gay rights issues .. and as long as they can claim it, many don't appear to care about anything else.  As long as it's not laughable on its face to claim that and sometimes even then.  We've seen it with our own eyes, on this very blog.

            "When in doubt, be ruthless" - Ferengi saying (-6.62, -6.26)

            by AndyS In Colorado on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 12:05:49 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I didn't say your pessimism was unwarranted (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              AndyS In Colorado

              not at all. I think I validated it, by agreeing your scenario is entirely possible. I just said you were more pessimistic than I. I attempt to imagine there's a win possible. I have to or I'd never post another diary.

              Trickle down Equality isn't working

              by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 07:25:01 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  FWIW, I see your posts as very valuable, even (0+ / 0-)

                with my outlook, and I don't consider myself pessimistic.  I just don't see this government nor either of the parties particularly interested in the welfare of any of the "little people" anymore.  You and I and all the rest of us, we're insects.

                But, even as an insect, I bet you give the administration heartburn ;)  We don't always serve the purpose we think we serve.

                "When in doubt, be ruthless" - Ferengi saying (-6.62, -6.26)

                by AndyS In Colorado on Sat Jul 10, 2010 at 03:34:35 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Print is too small (0+ / 0-)

    and I'm to old to have the eagle eyes I used to, but from what I can tell, they are just trying to get a feel for how the troops actually think about things. Will this affect anything as far as repeal or stand? Probably not. DoD has been doing these surveys for years but the bottom line is, somebody higher up makes the decision and the rank and file do it. That's just  the way the military operates. Always has, always will. Most people on here and other talk sites don't seem to understand that the militarys job is to PROTECT democracy, not be one. In the end, it doesn't matter how many surveys, or touchy feely focus groups they convene, the President will say something and the troops will follow it out. End of story.

    It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.

    by AKA potsi on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:51:37 AM PDT

    •  You can command-click over an image (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ArchiPup, Predictor

      (or whatever you Windows people do) and pull up the "view image" menu, and you can view them larger.

      DoD has been doing these surveys for years

      Curious what other issues they've done surveys like this for, do you know?

      Trickle down Equality isn't working

      by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:57:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  EEO and minority surveys (0+ / 0-)

        womens rights, they do all kinds of stuff like this. Actually, most of the questions are rehashed from previous surveys I was required to take while I was in, just change the word "homosexual" with woman, minority whatever. But like I said, the Head man will make the decision and the rank and file, like it or not, will follow his orders. If I can go on my soapbox for a bit here, I just recently retired from the Navy and what most people think about the subject on active duty? They don't. The biggest majority of people I talked to are way more concerned if the man or woman next to them is going to perform their job correctly, not who or what they sleep with at the end of the day. Admiral Mullen has got this one right and congress ought to just go along with it. That actually brings up another point. Why the hell is congress even involved? I thought DADT was an executive order from Pres. Clinton. Couldn't Pres. Obama just do away with it with his magic pen?

        It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.

        by AKA potsi on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:17:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Let's try that: (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          vacantlook

          just change the word "homosexual" with woman, minority whatever.

          If policy is changed, how easy or difficult do you think it will be for leadership as they start implementing the policy to . . .

          a. Hold Service members to the high standards of military personal conduct regardless of their gender?
               
          b. Treat Service members in the same manner regardless of their race?
               
          c. Provide the same opportunities to all Service members regardless of their religion?
               
          d. Make sure all Service members are treated with respect by their coworkers?
               
          e. Enforce good order and discipline?

          Couldn't Pres. Obama just do away with it with his magic pen?

          An ordinary pen would work. He could halt investigations by stop-loss, or by provisions in the DADT law itself. Has had that power since day one.

          Trickle down Equality isn't working

          by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:32:58 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  DADT was adopted by Congress (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Clarknt67

          so that is why an act of Congress will be needed to completely repeal it;  that having been said, the President could do a lot to minimize the effect of this though executive order.

          Non, je ne regrette rien

          by alexnovo on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:37:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I think (0+ / 0-)

            Adm Mullen and Sec Gates have both already say they are going to not quite stop enforcing it but pretty much. President Obama just needs to listen to them and do it.

            It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.

            by AKA potsi on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 12:56:23 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  And Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Dem Beans, Richard Lyon

              is reporting that they are still getting calls from servicemembers who need legal help in new investigations, and that these include third-party accusations, and have been initiated by lower level officers than the Pentagon claimes are authorized to do so.

              So, I guess it depends on who you believe is telling the truth.

              Trickle down Equality isn't working

              by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 01:02:21 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  It's a statute. Not an EO. And O's view of (0+ / 0-)

          statutes is that they get repealed. Remember on DOMA, he wants it repealed, but does not state if he considers it unconstitutional.

  •  The "believe to be homosexual" thing is (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fou, Richard Lyon, Predictor

    necessary to cover the troops who take this survey: under current DADT law, if you know a fellow servicemember is gay, you're required to report it.  I completely understand why they went this route.  

    But then again, it makes judging the results problematic, because 'believing' a fellow servicemember is gay doesn't make that servicemember gay, which means the answers are judging perception rather than reality.

    Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

    by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:55:54 AM PDT

    •  The whole thing is (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Predictor, Clarknt67, FogCityJohn

      utter crap and anybody who would attempt to deal with it as a valid source of information about much of anything is likely engaging in spin doctoring.

    •  Really? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pico, Clarknt67

      if you know a fellow servicemember is gay, you're required to report it

      ?  I wasn't aware that that was the case.  Do you have a cite?

      •  I'll see if I can find a better cite, but (0+ / 0-)

        I think it's embedded in the notion of 'disclosure' in § 654.(b).(2): if a servicemember so much as states sexual preference (regardless of to whom), that servicemember is to be separated from the armed forces.  I don't see 'failure to report a disclosure' listed specifically, but I know that's come up: even early on there was the question, for example, of whether the law required military psychiatrists to pass on disclosures made confidentially (they found they were exempt due to their special role in the military), and that commanding officers could not (this, I just know from procedures involving friends of mine).  I'll see if I can find something more concrete.  It's not the easiest thing to search for.

        Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

        by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 12:45:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  There may be a difference (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          pico

          between someone in official capacity (as in a chaplain, a psychiatrist, or a superior officer) finding out that someone is gay, and a random soldier (e.g., your buddy) finding out.

          I'd be surprised in the latter case that disclosure was mandated (but them, I'm surprised a lot...).

          •  But if the poster above is correct, every single (0+ / 0-)

            service person who thinks he or she has served with an LGB person and has not reported said person is himself or herself confessing to a violation of whatever statute the poster above is tryng to cite aby not having turned that person in before. Although the problem is that it is being done in the context of 'don't ask . . . ' and anything learned by the responses would violate the 'don't ask' part of that. So they'd have to find another way to ask, although they know who to ask since every responder has to sign in.

  •  In theory... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Predictor

    ...federal law requires that the anonymity of anyone who completes the survey be protected, and failure to do so or, worse, intentional exposure of a gay service member would leave one liable for criminal and civil penalties.

    In practice, the assholes responsible for such things could claim that this isn't really research and, in any case, "because I don't like it" tends to be a very strong defense when Republicans and "Democrats" in Congress back you up, civil rights be damned.

    Thwarting Republicans since 1978.

    by wiscmass on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 10:57:59 AM PDT

    •  Not sure where you are getting that (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Predictor

      "Federal requirement" you theorize about.

      Trickle down Equality isn't working

      by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:01:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  For starters... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Clarknt67

        ...the National Research Act of 1974, which was a response to the infection by the US Public Health Service of poor black farmers with syphilis without their knowledge or consent for the purpose of research.

        But you can't do any research on human subjects these days without adhering to the requirements of the Belmont Report that followed it.

        Thwarting Republicans since 1978.

        by wiscmass on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:52:58 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  "Federal requirements" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jpmassar

          are really very much not so much required when

          1. The military is involved (they're special and out of reach of the law!)
          1. And teh gay is involved (we're still debating whether they get to be protected by the same laws).

          So, I wouldn't put a lot of faith in that.

          Trickle down Equality isn't working

          by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:58:52 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I have just one more thing to add (10+ / 0-)

    Gates is encouraging LGBT personnel to complete this survey, but good god, it's just so insulting.  I've read through the entire thing and I'm so offended that it portrays us as possibly social pariahs or potential sexual predators.  

    And for those who know the history of military witch hunts, the way some of these questions are framed is chilling.  Not just asking if there's someone you perceived as gay, but someone that others also perceived as gay.  This is one of the methods they used to hound us out of the service.  This is seriously creepy.

    you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows

    by Dem Beans on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:07:51 AM PDT

    •  I've Done A Lot Of Survey Design (4+ / 0-)

      in my days at work and the thing has so many problems I don't even know where to start. Clearly you don't need to have any survey design experience to know that how a question is worded matters.

      "In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act." - George Orwell

      by webranding on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:12:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'd love to read your take on it (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Clarknt67

        But as you said, where to start...

        I wonder again about the 'perceived to be gay' questions - if this policy isn't repealed, can they follow up and find out just who is 'perceived' to be gay via this survey?  I know it's supposed to be confidential, but the military has known to be ruthless and relentless in their methods when it comes to throwing us out.

        I'm not viewing repeal as a sure thing at all.  Not after reading through this survey, and imagine if the GOP takes the House or makes gains in the Senate - we're in trouble, kids.

        you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows

        by Dem Beans on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:20:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I think a lot of people just don't know (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dem Beans, Richard Lyon

          The real history of this:

          the military has known to be ruthless and relentless in their methods when it comes to throwing us out.

          And can't understand the gay community's terror at being throw the the wolves of the DOD, unfortunately. It's like letting Wall Street run the economy. Oh, wait...

          Trickle down Equality isn't working

          by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:51:10 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, I was hoping to illicit response (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FogCityJohn

        from people who had designed surveys. I don't have the experience or education to dissect it. But it has a creepy push-poll feel about it for me.

        Trickle down Equality isn't working

        by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:48:32 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  What struck me was the (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    vacantlook, Dem Beans, pico, Clarknt67, skip945

    ... frequent inclusion of the options, "service's core values" and "service members' moral values."

    Very ... what word am I looking for? Leading? Judgmental? Both? Basically implying that a gay person couldn't have core or moral values.

    Maybe I'm reading too much into that (but I don't think so).

  •  I used to work in survey research and (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fou

    this reads pretty straightforward.  There are some cringe-worthy questions (sharing bath facilities, for instance) but these are the most frequently raised objections, so they need to be knocked down.  

    Importantly, the questions about repealing DADT and including openly gay/lesbian soldiers ask it in terms of extremely positive,   positive, equal,   negative, extremely negative, and not relevant.

    This sounds like hair-splitting, but 4/6 of the possible responses weigh in favor of repeal.  It could easily have been structured as:

    Would DADT affect your unit's performance: A)  A great deal, b) somewhat, c) a little; or D) not at all, in which case 3/4 would provide an anti-repeal answer.

    "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

    by Geekesque on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:16:42 AM PDT

    •  One thing I DO like about it, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geekesque, Clarknt67

      despite my reservations above, is that it requires the survey-takers to be precise and reflective about the nature of their discomfort and/or disagreement, along the lines of:  Do you know a gay person? -> Did that person serve well? -> Is that person's sexuality the reason? etc.  

      I'll be most interested in seeing what kind of divergence there is between people who judge gay/lesbian performance based on what they've seen, and based on how they feel (i.e. the more generic questions whether they support repeal).  

      Granted, none of this is necessary for the repeal to go through - if people feel uncomfortable, sucks for them - but if this is what it takes to get the Pentagon to support it, eh, I guess this is what we're doing.  

      Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

      by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:21:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm sorry (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      vacantlook, Dem Beans, Clarknt67, Keori

      but it's bullshit like these surveys that reinforce my (wholly irrational) belief that the castration anxiety of unenlightened 'straight' men is the root of all evil.

      I mean, at what fucking point are they going to own their masculinity and stop worrying about the proximity of another man's penis in the shower?  It boggles the mind that men who train to kill are so intimidated by such infantile bigotry.

      Oba-MA bumaye! Oba-MA bumaye!

      by fou on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:30:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I also really love the (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    vacantlook, Clarknt67

    "assume DADT is repealed... which of these factors would be more important to you in your decision to stay", followed by three financial considerations.  I can reword that one easily: "How much would we have to pay you to stay?"  Heh.

    Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

    by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 11:24:56 AM PDT

  •  Well you know (4+ / 0-)

    it is simply impossible to imagine a survey with such derogatory and insulting wording, assumptions, and insinuations going out about any other minority group in the military

    we are different. We are gays and we should be ashamed of ourselves and accept any crumbs we get. At least they're bothering to deal with our immoral faggot issues.

    But seriously, not only can I not think of a single other minority who would tolerate and accept this as part of the deal before we are allowed to reach equality, but, if it were any other minority, even white straight people would be speaking out and appalled.

    Help me, Professor Guyfucker! - dkos hatemail

    by indiemcemopants on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 01:14:29 PM PDT

  •  I am outraged! (7+ / 0-)

    As a psychologist, I have done many surveys, and constructed many myself. I have rarely (probably never) seen a professional survey that is so poorly constructed. It is essentially a push poll, designed not only to get the answers desired but to give people taking it talking points to resist military integration. There are so many things wrong with it that I'm not sure where to begin and don't have time to list all the problems (and expect many have been covered above).

    Suffice it to say that it is horribly long. That's likely to discourage anyone from taking it although those most likely to respond are rabid homophobes who will do anything they can to prevent DADT repeal. Items are redundant and the same questions are needlessly repeated. The use of "homosexual" as I noted above is prejudicial. The sample is likely to be very skewed since gay members have been warned not to take it for security reasons and there is nothing in survey to convince gay members that they will get a fair hearing - even if confidentiality is not breeched. The use of multiple choice items, while convenient for analysis, in this case is undesirable because it suggests negative outcomes of integration that service members might not have thought about themselves.

    I was stunned that they used "If" in regard to repeal rather than "when" it is repealed - conveying the message that responders could influence policy by the manner in which they took the survey.

    This is one instance where, if they wanted unbiased results, they would have gone with a short survey with simple multiple choice items and room for brief qualitative comments. For example: Have you knowingly served with gay or lesbian service members? Y N If yes, was the experience positive, neutral or negative? If positive, in what ways. If negative in what ways? Are you concerned that repeal of DADT will affect the military negatively/positively? List up to three ways? We would like to make the integration process go as smoothly as possible, Can you suggest up to three things that might help us to accomplish that goal? The purpose of such items is to suggest that repeal is going to happen, find out their own genuine concerns (not suggested ones), and enlist their aid in the process.

    As constructed the survey will do the opposite.

    The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking. John Kenneth Galbraith

    by Psyche on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 01:17:09 PM PDT

    •  pls email me (0+ / 0-)

      here I have a question for you.

      Trickle down Equality isn't working

      by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 01:21:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Excellent points, thank you (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Psyche, Richard Lyon, Clarknt67

      I hadn't considered this, but I think you're spot on:

      I was stunned that they used "If" in regard to repeal rather than "when" it is repealed - conveying the message that responders could influence policy by the manner in which they took the survey.

      Very useful input and much appreciated.

      you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows

      by Dem Beans on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 01:32:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That has pretty much been my assumption (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Psyche, Dem Beans

        all along. The origional claim was that DOD needed time to do a study about how to implement the repeal. Then along came the idea of an opinion survey. That easily shifts the ground from how to implement to whether it should be done at all. The language of the amendment to the appropriation bill seems to me to suggest the possibility that the military has the ability to conclude that DADT cannot be repealed without jeopardizing national security. Repeal is by no means a done deal at some point in the not too distant future.

    •  Further to this point . . . (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Psyche

      isn't one of the biggest problems that there's absolutely no way to view the results of this survey as truly representative of opinion in the military?  I mean, when pollsters do surveys, they don't let the people polled select themselves.  They try to come up with a group of folks who represent a fair cross-section of whatever group is being polled.  They don't send out surveys and just ask, "So, what do you think about this, Mr. Random Individual?"

      I know nothing about how one designs a proper survey, but it would seem to me that this one won't satisfy what I think is supposed to be an important criterion -- that its results fairly portray the opinion of servicemembers on this issue.  And don't even get me started on the biased nature of the questions themselves.

      Maladie d'Amour, Où l'on meurt d'Aimer, Seul et sans Amour, Sid'abandonné

      by FogCityJohn on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 05:19:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Absolutely (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Clarknt67

        Sounds like they used a "random sample" but obviously if most gays don't take it for security or other reasons and a lot of others don't take it because it's offensive and/or too damn long they'll end up with a sample of gay-haters who are only too willing to do their part for the cause - which is to keep gays out of the military. This "survey" is a farce except to the extent it whips up anti-gay sentiment - which may have been an important goal for them.

        The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking. John Kenneth Galbraith

        by Psyche on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 07:23:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Random vs. Representative (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Clarknt67

          I think this is a big problem.  They aren't trying to make sure that their results are anything other than random.  I don't know how one would go about getting a scientific cross-section of servicemembers' opinion, but I am certain it could be done.  Pollsters and researchers do this kind of thing all the time, no?

          I'm with you.  It's probably designed to get a negative result.

          Maladie d'Amour, Où l'on meurt d'Aimer, Seul et sans Amour, Sid'abandonné

          by FogCityJohn on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 07:44:04 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  by the way, Adam Bink at Open Left has posted (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Clarknt67

    on the "should we hope for a DOJ appeal?" issue, and it's worth reading.

    Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

    by pico on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 01:52:52 PM PDT

  •  When I read the questionnaire (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dem Beans, Richard Lyon, Clarknt67

    I'm aware of how it would be taken if the references to LGBT were changed to woman, or Martian, or disabled; do you work with a disabled person?  How is the morale in the group?

    W.  T.  F.

    PS Yes I am a woman with a disability; but I am not a Martian.

    "A Canadian is merely an unarmed American with health care." John Wing

    by marigold on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 02:13:41 PM PDT

  •  By the way... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Clarknt67

    I think it's unfortunate that this diary didn't make the rec list for a couple of reasons:

    1.  The grotesque and offensive nature of the survey questions should be seen and understood by the dKos community when the hammer comes down later this year and an unfavorable result is disclosed. Since this 'the military hates homos and this is commie social engineering that must be stopped' is going to be used against both Congressional Democrats and the President, it's important to grasp the many flaws in this survey from the start.
    1.  For those who keep telling us that the law has been 'repealed' by Congress and we're simply being picky and ungrateful, they need to know that this isn't in the bag and that the forces against appeal are at work - and might indeed prevail.  Failure to repeal DADT would put a stake through the heart of any other positive reform in any other area for years.  This is dangerous and should concern us all, gay or straight, especially those who feel we should vote a Democratic ticket regardless of progress made vs promises made. This has been horribly mishandled and the chickens, so to speak, may come home to roost.

    you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows

    by Dem Beans on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 02:24:34 PM PDT

    •  While this is certainly an excellent diary (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dem Beans, Clarknt67

      I'm afraid that it will take more than getting it on the rec list to get through to the people who choose to be in denial about the realities of repeal. By and large they are not dealing from the top of the deck.

    •  I agree. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dem Beans

      That's why I keep posting this stuff. Before the vote, I made the rec list regularly. I've noticed since the vote, I haven't. Sad. I guess people think the issue is over.

      Mission accomplished.

      Except for the part about harassment, discrimination,  investigations and discharges of LGB servicemembers stopping. That part is still around. Indefinitely.

      But a bill was voted on.

      Trickle down Equality isn't working

      by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 02:56:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'll make a prediction (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Clarknt67

        If it isn't repealed because this survey, in whole or in part, becomes a rallying point for the anti-repeal forces many here will simply shrug and say there isn't enough support within the military to do away with it.  No mention will be given of the process that handed them the power to create a huge propaganda tool for the Republicans and regressive Blue Dogs like Ike Skelton to cow Obama into inaction.

        WaPo is now covering it - here's the link.

        Parts of Don't Ask, Don't Tell Survey Released

        you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows

        by Dem Beans on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 03:20:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  One of the issues needing note in this survey (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dem Beans, Clarknt67

      discussion is the present complement of the military. Since the draft was abolished, the 'wide swath of all young males' has been reduced to 'volunteers,' and there has been a huge push by some officers and some religious groups to push or convert troops to come of the more socially conservative sects, whose general opinion on this issue most posters here know. That may have its own effect on the outcome of the survey.

      •  Which is why that they freely admit (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dem Beans, Richard Lyon, FogCityJohn

        it is not a scientific survey is troubling. It can easily be freeped to be non-representative. If they are hoping to glean information, they have chosen a terrible methodology to rely on it's accuracy.

        Trickle down Equality isn't working

        by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 04:32:59 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Motivation will also be a factor (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Clarknt67, FogCityJohn

        Someone who doesn't care if gays serve or not - meaning they would be considered pro-repeal - may not take the time or expend the effort to answer this very lengthy survey.  A homo-hating bigot would spend hours on it if required.

        Once a negative survey result is released, watch Obama fold like a dinner napkin.  I could write the script right now.

        you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows

        by Dem Beans on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 04:50:35 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  There is of course the question (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Clarknt67, FogCityJohn

          of whether the answers given will have anything much to do with the official results.

          •  It is the perfect cover for an administration who (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Richard Lyon, Clarknt67, FogCityJohn

            has been tone-deaf to its LGBT constituency from day one.  

            Decrying this as "too much, too soon" for the military (when we are a nation at war), it will be shrugged as a good effort, politicians will point to the survey and say they can't contradict the military, and the administration will say, "Well, we tried. But vote for us! It would be worse with a Republican!"

            The question will be how the LGBT community will respond.  We are not all one issue voters, but this has gone well beyond being old.

            •  I certainly hope the LGBT community (0+ / 0-)

              will not let ourselves be snowed, if that is the case. As Andy said above:

              With too little signs of active opposition, now opposition is literally being manufactured out of thin air.

              I certainly hope our community will recognize that. Surely they must, with 80% support for repeal, our community won't give Obama/the Democrats a pass on letting it stand? Sure our community will remember, "Wait? Who's the commander-in-chief? What does a commander to? How did Truman handle this?" and call BS on any stalls. Our leaders will have to get together and agree to stick to message on that. Will they sacrifice their rolodex to go off the DNC message?

              Trickle down Equality isn't working

              by Scott Wooledge on Fri Jul 09, 2010 at 08:01:52 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

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