Sean Martin

This Memorial Day

Filed By Sean Martin | May 28, 2010 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment, Politics
Tags: comic strip, Doc and Raider, Don't Ask Don't Tell, gay comics, Memorial Day, soldier's sacrafice

Plenty to remember. Plenty to think about as well.

Unlike most of my activist friends, I'm not as hopeful about the fate of DADT. I honestly believe we're being played, in an enormous shell game that's hopelessly stacked against us. Yes, the Senate Armed Forces Committee and the House voted in our favor last night... but with the caveat that the Pentagon be allowed to finish its "study" before the ban is lifted.

How many of you honestly believe that "study" will be finished by December? And even if it is, how many of you honestly think, given the sampling the Pentagon is using, that the results will come back as we hope? If you do, let me show you pictures of some lovely beachfront property for sale in Arizona, right next door to John "I'm against DADT -- oh wait I'm up for re-election! I'm for it! Honest!" McCain seems to think that no marine's ass will be safe and the uniform code will have to changed to include tutus and tiaras, parade marches will now have to include "In the Navy", and when that staff sergeant says "Get down and give me twenty!", he's not talking about push ups.

At least McCain's motives are transparent enough. He's had to shift more and more to the right to hold onto his seat in the Senate, because God knows the man isn't suited for any other employment. But the others? Our continually fierce advocate of a president? The always charming speaker of the house? The perpetually upbeat Barney Frank?

Toon and more thoughts after the jump.

Call me a cynical realist, but I no longer trust those three as far as I can throw them, which, despite regular workouts at the gym, wouldn't be that far. We're talking about people who depend on votes to stay in power, and given how relentlessly poisonous political campaigns have become of late, no one's gonna near a full-out progressive step towards equality.

But they'll make it look like they are -- and appearances are, after all, everything.

And we'll buy it, every time. Because when you look at the alternatives, it's probably better to accept scraps on the floor than a real, actual seat at the table.

So yes, this weekend, take a moment or two from the first real party of the 2010 summer season and remember the gays and lesbians who died to make that moment safe as well as possible. And do not, for one single second, think that it's over. It's not.

The summer fun is just beginning.

Click the image for a larger version.

(Just a reminder: the cartoon is on hiatus until mid week after next. Don't break out the champagne just yet -- I haven't left, just gone on vacation. I'll be back.)


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Michael @ LeonardMatlovich.com | May 28, 2010 6:14 PM

Bravo for your words, and the graphic!

Through links, I offer my own, and a video of a speech which is, sadly and needlessly, no less true than it was when it was delivered last October....let alone on Memorial Day in 1975 when Walter Cronkite introduced the first gay person to fight the ban to America.

http://leonardmatlovich.com/images/258_The-Gates-in-the-Band.jpg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wIPDr5DLGHU

I hope that we won't have to repeat this cartoon next year.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | May 29, 2010 9:35 AM

I am glad I may have given you some small portion of your inspiration Sean, but still, our victory here is inevitable. The safety of the Out Gay Soldier is not assured until there is proper planning for it.

Here is a "for instance" for you. On Facebook I caught my partner's great nephews friends (the one just back from a tour in Afghanistan) doing a long riff on Gays (ha ha). WHEN I CAUGHT IT I BLASTED THEM. Then I got to hear a bunch of: "Hey dude, we're just smokin and jokin." I knew in 1972 that the faggot was the "homosexual gentleman" who just left the room.

I hope Michael agrees with me in this. Safety of the out LGBT soldier is primary. It is not just about laws, it is about attitudes. Once again: 1948 Truman forces integration when it is apparent the Supreme Court will enforce it anyway. Beginning 13 years later, and for the next eleven years, African Americans account for 40% more deaths than they should in Vietnam by population.

Michael knows these figures just as I know his heart. You are damned right I want a study and proper and complete integration of LGBT persons into our military so that they are not cannon fodder for whatever stupid war there might be 13 years from now.

The best question I can ask you Sean is a simple one. Would you trust your fellow soldier with your life? Given all the zealots, religious hypocrites and monsters in America would you trust the parachute they packed for you?

Gay American Veterans have served at every level of all branches of the military in spite of the odds. Lets do this right!