Homo Soldier Speaks Out

’60 Minutes’ Gets Gay

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CBS’ long-running 60 Minutes spends at least some of this Sunday’s time exploring the ins and outs of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. In addition to exploring Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, Leslie Stahl sits down with Darren Manzella, the army sergeant who unceremoniously came out last June. From SLDN:

Manzella tells Stahl that he has received overwhelming support from both his fellow soldiers and superiors since coming out last year. Stahl’s report also looks at SLDN’s work in assisting service personnel such as Manzella, and the organization’s campaign to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

“Sergeant Manzella’s story illustrates the arbitrary and uneven enforcement of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’” said SLDN executive director Aubrey Sarvis. “Many commands, like Manzella’s, recognize that their lesbian and gay troops are instrumental in the work of defending our country.”

Manzella recounts to Stahl how his commander called him into the office to investigate his queer disclosure. Despite Manzella’s admission and pictures of his boyfriend, the military man simply told him to get back to his duties. “I was told to go back to work. There was no evidence of homosexuality. [My superior said,] You’re not gay.” Another once said, “I don’t care if you’re gay or not.” Someone tell Condi to tune in…