Gay Barracks? Marine Commandant Promises to Force Gay To Live in Separate Housing

Marine Corps’ commandant Gen. James Conway has declared that, if Congress allows openly gay personnel, those marines will be given separate rooms to avoid forcing straight marines to share quarters with homosexuals.

Conway is a known opponent of repealing the law and insisted “I would not ask our Marines to live with someone who is homosexual if we can possibly avoid it. . . And to me that means we have to build BEQs [bachelor enlisted quarters] and have single rooms.”

Of course, if you want your own room, there is now an easy way to get it in the Corps.

Conway must know that, if there is segregation of gays, that is likely to reinforce the animosity in the ranks toward gay personnel. It could also produce a conflict with Congress and the White House, which could prohibit such separate but equal policies in housing. The Marines, like other services, once segregated black personnel, which would be a troubling model in the twenty-first century. Conway could claim that this falls into his discretion of “good discipline and order.” However, it also undermines the goal of incorporation of gay personnel in the ranks as a policy set by the Commander and Chief and Congress. In such a conflict, the Commander and Chief would prevail — if he was willing to take up the fight. What is clear is that a more organized opposition is emerging in the ranks – at the encouragement of high-ranking officers.

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71 thoughts on “Gay Barracks? Marine Commandant Promises to Force Gay To Live in Separate Housing”

  1. Corrction:

    I wrote:
    I’m demanding that if people are going to insist on that line of thinking, that carry it to the extent that that rationale takes them.

    Should read:

    …that THEY carry it to the FULL extent that that rationale takes them.

  2. Buddha: Actually I was responding to someone else saying that homosexuals are as physically fit as heterosexuals. I think that point is irrelevant. Perhaps I phrased things wrongly. I do that a lot.

    My larger point is that we will not legally be able to discriminate at against women in military barracks if we cannot discriminate against homosexuals in them.

    In fact, we will have to force the women into the male barracks by the same legal standard that homosexuals are demanding they be in them.

    Of course, that is IF we apply the standards and laws fairly to women in the military after homosexuals are allowed to serve openly and stay in mostly heterosexual barracks.

    If this {women being forced into male barracks) is not already happening in foreign armies, it only indicates hypocrisy and a failure to not follow through with the framework of the logic they have used to defend letting homosexuals serve openly in the military.

    I’m demanding that if people are going to insist on that line of thinking, that carry it to the extent that that rationale takes them.

    That extent leads to absurdity. Which is what I want people to see.

  3. They told us this would happen. 🙂


  4. A homosexual can save a heterosexuals life just as well as a heterosexual can.

    Ricky Martin livin la vida roca

  5. “there is no legal reason to keep military men and women in separate quarters, otherwise it is sexual discrimination among the physically fit.”

    Hey, Tootie. There’s an error in that statement. It contains the assumption of fitness predicated on sexual orientation. This is the fallacy known as begging the question. This is the fallacy in which the proposition to be proved is assumed implicitly or explicitly in the premise.

    Now you show the error in Mike’s reasoning, Tootles. “In it somewhere” just ain’t gonna cut the old analytical mustard. Maybe you need some help. Some flamboyantly gay help. It worked out well for Desdamona. It saved her life! Imagine that. A homosexual can save a heterosexuals life just as well as a heterosexual can.


  6. Mike:

    In your framework then, there is no legal reason to keep military men and women in separate quarters, otherwise it is sexual discrimination among the physically fit.

    That absurdity is proof that your conclusion has an error in it somewhere.

  7. TomD:

    Your example about what blacks experienced doesn’t make my point untrue. Just because blacks were once discriminated against because of prejudice doesn’t mean that homosexuals are being discriminated against based on prejudice. Many groups can be banned from the military. Also, the situation with blacks in the military wasn’t about sexual activity between black and white men. Though a clear case can be made about the problem with women in the military.

    I am banned from the military because of my age and health. Why? Well, because I would cause problems and disrupt the efficiency and effectiveness of the military.

    This isn’t an insult against me, it’s a practical response to the requirements of military life.

  8. Anyone who’s ever been through basic training in any branch of the military knows that you either make it or you don’t. Military personnel are expected to maintain discipline, to respect each other and to obey lawful orders. Sexual orientation has no more bearing on the ability of an individual to conform to the structure of the military than does race. The opposition to abolition of “don’t ask/don’t tell” has its origins in the same mindset that produced opposition to integration of the armed services. I note that that mindset has been displayed on this thread in objections based solely upon a belief that homosexuals should not have the same rights as are afforded to other citizens. This attitude is a close cousin to racism because it relies upon the same fundamental flaw, a stubborn unwillingness to recognize that we’re all bozos on this bus. This is hardly complicated stuff.

  9. Tootie,

    The question was a rhetorical one with loaded language, not a loaded one, there’s a difference.

    Here’s the thing, ideas need to be judged on their merit, not on who holds them. Your refusal to do a simple “find\replace” with the word Leftist says you’re unwilling to separate the two.

    I already knew your arguments couldn’t stand on their own merit (For example, there’s a much stronger case to be made other countries ask for our military support because we spend more on our military than any other country on earth, thus have one of the best equipped and trained armed forces in the world than because we don’t allow gays to serve). I was trying to gauge your willingness to engage in an actual conversation on this topic. Since it appears to be next to none, I’ll let you get back to pontificating.

  10. Gyges:

    You didn’t need to ask me a loaded question in your last post, mainly because they are cheap shots and you are smart enough to not need them.

    Furthermore, I made myself perfectly clear when I said “Oh, heck no.” to your question about if I would abandon the name calling and labels.

    I won’t. And I clearly explained why.

    Beyond that, I don’t need the approval of others before I make my points. This probably has something to do with my obsession with liberty. When I was young, I especially looked forward to this aspect of being an adult and speaking my mind. And what’s left of it, I’m going to gave out at will. 😮

    The issues which I have already clearly discussed, with an adequate if not abundant amount of specificity, were discussed WHILE I pointed to the various characters and ideas involved. They are inseparable, in my opinion.

    If you want to know the beliefs that lay behind my opinions, I’m happy to tell you them. And the only reason you won’t know them would be because you refused to read them as a result of limitations you place on yourself.

    To say that we must exclude relevant information (usually uncomfortable in nature) about the subjects we discussing in order to gain clarity, doesn’t make sense.

    The rough part about being specific about political, moral, and ethical ideas AND being specific about the people who promote them is that it isn’t as easy as discussing the mating habits of fish, the nature of gravity, or some other subject in which human action is not responsible for consequences.

    The hazard of discussing the worst of human ideas, and political ideas specifically, involves having to put a name or group with the theory or ideas they promote. The reason we have to do this because they involve war, murder, slavery, theft, plunder, tyranny, subjugation, and all manner of horrible things that characterize the human condition.

    I want more information. More speech. More expression. And more liberty to discuss everything.

    Liberty will not grow when we hide from ourselves who is behind the ideas humans express.

    I appreciate your civility and your kindness. And if you are a homosexual, I wish no ill towards you, your friends, or loved ones. I’m a fundie Baptist Christian and I believe the Old Testament death penalty for homosexuals and heterosexual adulterers applied only to the nation of Israel during the specific time period between its establishment by Moses up to the death of Jesus Christ who abolished it when he did not condemn the woman caught in adultery.

    According to Jewish law, she should have been stoned to death and He should have turned her over for trial.

    That did not happen.

  11. TDA – That’s absolutely right:

    Most civilians and military personnel opposed racial integration. One month before President Truman’s Executive Order [to end segregation], a Gallup poll showed that 63% of American adults endorsed the separation of Blacks and Whites in the military; only 26% supported integration. A 1949 survey of white Army personnel revealed that 32% completely opposed racial integration in any form, and 61% opposed integration if it meant that Whites and Blacks would share sleeping quarters and mess halls. However, 68% of white soldiers were willing to have Blacks and Whites work together, provided they didn’t share barracks or mess facilities.

    As the 1993 RAND report noted,

    “Many white Americans (especially Southerners) responded with visceral revulsion to the idea of close physical contact with blacks. Many also perceived racial integration as a profound affront to their sense of social order…”

  12. Is “Tootie” completely oblivious to the history of “racial” integration of the US military? Let’s juxtapose some words and see how this argument stands up (my edits are in brackets). Yes, this is an exercise in the obvious, but it seems that it needs to be done. Also, I am using the “outdated” term “negro” to reinforce how out-dated this type of thinking clearly is. It is not meant to demean anyone other than those whose thinking is 50 years out of date.


    Tootie 1, March 29, 2010 at 10:52 am


    Your point is irrelevant to the problem and views only the feelings of the [NEGRO] homosexual. And you are referring to [NEGROES] homosexuals who cover up their sexuality. But like I say, you are considering only the feelings of the [NEGRO] homosexual.

    In your viewpoint, [WHITES] heterosexual males are simply not allowed to have their very strong feelings count. They are to be ignored. This is awful because the truth is that this bothers the [WHITES] heterosexuals and they make up the bulk of the [AMERICAN] male population. And they also represent the bulk of those in the military who bunk together.

    It is absurd to the point of insanity to ignore their feelings.

    Say what you want about this perhaps being a flaw in American thinking (and I don’t think it is), but forcing American military [WHITE] men to change their emotions on this in a top down fashion is exceedingly destructive and dangerous.


    and so on…. The history of “racially integrating” the US military has been an overwhelming success. It not only strengthened our military, but had an extraordinarily positive impact on our nation as a whole.

    Of course, it wasn’t so positive for conservatives because it disproved their racist ideologies, and it chipped away at the disproportionate power and advantages they hold in our culture.

    Let’s be frank about the politics here. Conservatives/the Right Wing have selected yet another group to demonize and marginalize based on the claim that there’s something “bad” or “inferior” about these people. For the short term, it’s a winning wedge issue (see the use of an anti-gay ballot initiative in Ohio to help win a presidential election.) In the long run, the general public is going to realize that there’s nothing really different about these people, and that it’s best to treat them with respect and as equals. This will be another loss for conservatives, and will further make them look bad. Conservatives will further retrench and mutter to each other about their status as victims of unfair persecution. Boo hooo.

  13. Joe:

    good post and thought provoking, do Marines actually put their pee, pee’s in coconuts or is that just a personal predilection 🙂

  14. According to NPR, “In 2003, a survey of female veterans found that 30 percent said they were raped in the military. A 2004 study of veterans who were seeking help for post-traumatic stress disorder found that 71 percent of the women said they were sexually assaulted or raped while serving. And a 1995 study of female veterans of the Gulf and earlier wars, found that 90 percent had been sexually harassed.”

    Let me get this straight (pun intended): effeminate men (who are just certain to join the military in droves) pose a significant problem to order and discipline in the military.

  15. As a former Marine, I find it offensive that the General or anyone else in Washington would assume that they can predict my behavior towards my fellow man without even consulting me in the first place. If “Sexual Orientation” is protected then why would anyone be asking the question in the first place? Here is yet again another problem our government chooses to promote that actually doesn’t exist. When I go through boot camp and infantry training with another Marine, my main concerns are if they pull their own weight and will I be able to count on them when the “poop” hits the fan. I really don’t care if they stick their pee-pee’s in a coconut twice a day on Sunday or not! Unfortunately, this issue does arise more often when we discuss female Marines rather than Gay Marines. I believe this is a direct result of our constant indoctrination as children that the sexes are different, and my (not the females) reactions under stress, duress, torture etc. “MAY” be different if a female Marine is in jeopardy. However, do any of you actually think that when there are 50 Marines living in very close proximity to one another then Gay guy doesn’t stick out (no pun intended). I believe the General is a manager and a politician (though not a very good one) and his concern may stem from what happens to the openly Gay individual when confronted with a bigot while sharing a room or 49 other bigots if that is the case. What is so very childish about these types of conversations is that it always appears to be held by individuals that don’t have a dog in the fight (That’s Devil Dog not michael vick dog) and they center around an issue that is already decided, yet no one ever wants to discuss the reality. I will provide an example. FACT: Rape is illegal under the uniform code of military justice. However, we don’t question the fact that there are female Marines serving their country as we speak, females do live in separate quarters from males, but again this is a management function related to taking a group of very fit and healthy 19 year old’s with different backgrounds, morals and educations then letting them live together. Seems like a bad idea, huh! So a management decision is made to provide for separate housing in an attempt to control the outcome of these types of situations. Yet, I am pretty confident (with out providing statistics) that female Marines can still be raped! In this scenario we would prosecute the offender under the law. Wouldn’t we do the same to the bigot/s? if the same happened to a gay marine? Not rape (not trying to be funny) but any infringement of that Marines rights. So the General is thinking like a manager but speaking like a bigot and he probably didn’t mean to but he may have ended his career. So why does the General, President Obama or even you folks on this blog need to know if someone is gay or not? I guess my point is not about “don’t ask, don’t tell”, it’s why would the military even ask. The U.S. Government is the only employer I am aware of that can violate it’s own Country’s laws and no one notices. The U.S. Military has an age clause (too old, don’t volunteer) yet that’s okay. At least a closeted homo can serve his country with honor and distinction.

  16. Duh,

    I agree that there are some gays who would be terrible in the military, for a variety of reasons. That doesn’t have any bearing on if someone should be barred from military service simply for being gay. There are plenty of non-gays who would be terrible in the military. Some of them even enlist anyway, and the military has systems in place for dealing with it. The idea that the same systems would be rendered inadequate because of the presence of gays is absurd.

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