Stephanie Young, 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today on the second anniversary of the end of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy:
“Two years ago today, our nation fully opened the doors of military service to LGBT Americans wishing to serve their country openly. The end of the discriminatory 'Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell' policy reflected the great American tradition of breaking down barriers and expanding equal opportunity, and I was proud to have played a part in Democrats’ effort to repeal it.
“No longer must soldiers, sailors, airmen, or Marines hide who they are or whom they love in order to put their lives on the line for the country they love. No longer must our military branches be forced to discharge talented and driven individuals from service because of their sexual orientation. We have turned a page, and the harm to our preparedness and morale of our troops that was predicted by opponents of repeal has not materialized. To the contrary, allowing LGBT Americans to serve openly has strengthened our Armed Forces by ensuring that the greatest military on Earth reflects the values of the greatest democracy on Earth.
“I join in thanking our LGBT men and women in uniform for their service and sacrifices, and I will continue to stand up for the full inclusion of LGBT Americans in our society and an end to discrimination wherever it may still be found.”