In the U.S. Armed Forces, the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy is just the beginning. A Pentagon document classifies homosexuality as a “mental disorder” alongside mental retardation and personality disorders in one section and goes so far as to list reitrement procedures for gay men and women serving. (
Unfortunately, no published report we could find explains what the document is, when it was drafted, or how it was released. The document is a Department of Defense Instruction and was signed by the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness in 1996 and re-certified as “current” in 2003, says CSSMM.)
Pentagon officials have quickly jumped on the defense, claiming the document is now “under review.” Some lawmakers, meanwhile, have already sent a letter to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld asking “for a full review of all documents and policies to ensure they reflect that same standard.”
Back in 1973, the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from its list of mental disorders. (For such a progressive organization, keep it mind the APA was run by mostly straight white men.) Perhaps one day, the U.S. government will do the same. Officially.
Update: View the documents here.