Lieutenant Dan Choi / CREDO Action – 2009-05-14 21:53:15
Dan Choi, an Army Lieutenant, asked us share this message with the CREDO Action and Courage Campaign communities. I hope you’re moved to take action by his story, as we were. The military can ill afford to put our national security in jeopardy — firing Dan Choi for being gay is just plain wrong. Tell President Obama that we must repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”
— Kate Stayman-London, Campaign Manager
Repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”
Lieutenant Dan Choi
In March, I went on Rachel Maddow’s show and spoke three truthful words: “I am gay.”
As an infantry officer, an Iraq combat veteran and a West Point graduate with a degree in Arabic, I refuse to lie to my commanders. I refuse to lie to my peers. I refuse to lie to my subordinates.
As a result, the Army sent a letter discharging me on April 23. The letter is a slap in the face. It is a slap in the face to me, and it is a slap in the face to the soldiers who I have commanded and served with over the last decade.
I have served for a decade under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” — an immoral policy that forces American soldiers to lie about their sexual orientation. Worse, it forces others to tolerate deception. As I learned at West Point, deception and lies poison a unit and cripple a fighting force.
That’s why CREDO Action and the Courage Campaign are getting behind me today. And I’m getting behind them along with Knights Out — an organization I founded to bring attention to the ways “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” undermines our national security.
I need your support. Please ask President Obama not to fire me. Click here to sign CREDO Action’s petition asking the President to end the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy.
In the ten years since I first raised my right hand at the United States Military Academy at West Point and committed to fighting for my country, I have learned many lessons. Courage, integrity, honesty and selfless service are some of the most important.
That’s why my discharge from the Army is so painful. I am not accustomed to begging, but I am begging President Obama today: Do not fire me.
My subordinates know I’m gay. They don’t care. They are professionals. My soldiers are more than a unit or a fighting force — we are a family and we support each other. Will you support me as well?
• Click here to ask President Obama to keep his promise — he needs to tell Congress to repeal the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law and support equality in the military.
Daniel W. Choi, 1LT, IN
New York Army National Guard
“President Obama, The time has come to end discrimination in our armed forces. We, the undersigned, ask you to stop the discharge of Lt. Dan Choi and any other soldier as a result of the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy. We ask that you uphold your pledge and push Congress to quickly put a bill on your desk to repeal ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.'”