poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

US Military Underplays Anti-Gay Violence
by Newscenter Staff

(Santa Barbara, California) A draft report prepared for the University of California research program shows that despite official Pentagon assertions that the military takes anti-gay harassment as seriously as harassment against women and racial minorities, the military's policies and practices reveal markedly different enforcement and deterrent efforts for these three forms of abuse.

The report, titled "The Practical and Conceptual Problems with Regulating Harassment in a Discriminatory Institution," was commissioned by the Center for the Study of Sexual Minorities in the Military University of California, Santa Barbara.

Senior Pentagon officials repeatedly have insisted that the military seeks to deter and punish all forms of abuse. Former Assistant Secretary of Defense Kenneth Bacon, for example, noted in 1999 that "there's no room for harassment in the military. And this applies to harassment based on race, harassment based on sex, and harassment based on sexual orientation. ... [J]ust as racial harassment is inappropriate, harassment based on sexual orientation is inappropriate ... "

But, according to Sharon Terman, author of the new 39-page report, the Pentagon's policies and practices all demonstrate far more meaningful efforts on the part of the military to prevent racial and sexual harassment than anti-gay harassment.


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