Skip to comments.The Media and Don't Ask, Don't Tell Part 4
Posted on 12/06/2010 5:39:04 PM PST by IrishCatholic
While I have been here since 2003. This is my first post. Wouldn't you know it was a vanity?
The following post is my review of the DADT report available on the Defense Department web site. The review is quite lengthy so it is broken up into four parts. Those parts are listed in the first comment section of each post. I wrote the review late at night and after work, so please forgive any errors. It may seem to be all about the DADT report, but what it is really about is how the press portrayed the report, and how the report is now viewed in the eyes of millions of Americans.
Part 4. The Second Half of the Report and the Conclusion of the Critique.
If you have made it this far, then congratulations. You made it further into the topic than any major press did the day it was released. Reading the report didn’t require a major investment in time. What it required was glancing through the appendices and seeing if they matched the assertions in the first report. Once you read the actual questions and saw how they were structured, and how the results were listed, you knew that any statement that the majority of service members were OK with the repeal was simply fantasy.
Here was the slant from the Huffington Post three days before the report was officially released:
” WASHINGTON When a majority of troops told Pentagon interviewers this summer they didn’t care if gays were allowed to serve openly in the military, it represented a sharp break from the past when America’s fighting forces voiced bitter opposition to accepting racial minorities and women in the services.”
Here is their take on the day of the release:
“WASHINGTON — The Pentagon released its much-anticipated study on repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) on Tuesday, finding that 70 percent of service members believe the change in policy would have a positive, mixed or no effect. The announcement was accompanied by a full-throated endorsement of allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly by the study’s co-authors, who concluded that there is little risk of disruption to the military if implementation is properly carried out.
Co-authors Defense Department General Counsel Jeh Johnson and Army Gen. Carter Ham told reporters in a press briefing on Tuesday that the study found strong support for implementing repeal, and activists are hoping that lawmakers who were waiting to see the findings will now come out in support of allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly. Furthermore, they made clear that much of the opposition to repeal springs from misinformation.
“The reality is that there are gay men and lesbians already serving in today’s U.S. military, and most Service members recognize this,” said Johnson in his prepared remarks to reporters. “Further, in the course of our assessment, it became apparent to us that, aside from the moral and religious objections to homosexuality, much of the concern about ‘openly’ gay Service members is driven by misperceptions and stereotypes.”
“We conclude that, while a repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell will likely, in the short term, bring about some limited and isolated disruption to unit cohesion and retention, we do not believe this disruption will be widespread or long-lasting, and can be adequately addressed by the recommendations we offer,” added Ham. “Longer term, with a continued and sustained commitment to core values of leadership, professionalism, and respect for all, we are convinced that the U.S. military can adjust and accommodate this change, just as it has others in history.”
Johnson also addressed concerns about what having service members “out” would entail, noting that workplaces do not require people to keep sexual orientation secret yet nevertheless, “most gay men and lesbians still tend to be discreet about their personal lives, and guarded about the people with whom they share information about their sexual orientation. We believe that, in the military environment, this would be true even more so.”
Well, hell folks. You would think the people that authored the study read it. They started out with an agenda and even rigging the entire process still didn’t get the results they wanted. So they mischaracterized the study. Who are you going to believe, your lying eyes or these fine professionals who can now hope to marry their same sex partners? (OK, it isn’t fair to make that up. And I just did make that up because it ended the sentence with a kick. But since they made up what the study said, I thought it was only fair to just make stuff up and see it in print.) But what isn’t made up is that one of the authors, Jeh Johnson, served as a member of Obama’s transition team and it was the President who nominated Mr. Johnson to the position of General Council of the Defense Department. Who better to conduct the study than the appointee of the man pushing the change. I’m sure you got that nugget from your news reporting. Any reporter should have looked into the fact that a man authoring the study had a vested interest in the outcome.
As for General Ham, there is no information on him that shows he comes to the table with an agenda. There is no reason to assume he is not either acting in what he believes is right, or doing what he is ordered to do. However, he is not entitled to his own facts. There is a very good indication from the study that there will be a significant impact on the military, and to forecast that impact as temporary in nature is without foundation or any empirical support. Much of the survey showed that the men and women served their country because they wanted to, and that that service would not be stopped by the degrading of the service around them. That is not the same as saying they don’t mind. They do. They made that clear.
What they also made clear is that any baseless smear by Leftists of “homophobia” in the study is just that- a baseless smear. Almost 59% responded in the survey that they had family members, friends, or acquaintances who were gay. It is one thing to be tolerant or even love someone with same sex attraction disorder, it is another to allow that condition to degrade unit performance, cohesion, and the function of the military.
Now there is a second half of the report. This is where gatherings took place mostly in the continental United States where small groups were brought together to discuss the topic. It is impossible to quantify as it is not only submitted comments, it is also what officials hosting these groups wrote down as quotes. The report is 219 pages and you could take 219 pages discussing and evaluating what was written. However, what you are discussing is only what the people giving the study say occurred. This is the problem with not having a primary source of information but only a report of that information. There is nothing standardized. There is nothing to compare. What is noted is that there were 70,000 submitted comments and there certainly aren’t 70,000 comments in the second half of the report. Which comments were used and how they are described are up to the writers of the report.
That makes the second half of the report meaningless. Any reporter should have looked, as I did, and note that many of the comments listed weren’t positive. The authors spin in between the given examples are meaningless as they only serve to support what the authors wish to present. I hardly spent any time on the second half because there was no need. How could you evaluate it objectively? Unless they somehow managed to group all 70,000 comments by positive/negative and gave the quotes, the report has no more validity than an opinion given by a drunk at the end of a bar, or the gossip on Facebook between two teenagers.
The report of DADT was probably very expensive. It is written in a way to dice and slice what you want to find in it to support the repeal. But the press merely took it as it was described and published the findings at face value. This is the point, not the sham report, that truly illustrates the need to replace the press. Whether you want to call it biased. Whether you want to call it lazy. Whether you want to call it incompetent or corrupt. No matter how you label the press the one thing you can’t label the press is honest.
That is the finding of the report. That is the finding of this critique.
Thanks for reading the report and your comments.
Someone had to do it, and it couldn’t possibly be the press, whose job it is to report the facts, but who instead just make up stuff.
It doesn’t take a village, it takes a freeper.
Any reason you couldn’t post this in less than 4 separate threads?
1. I thought they were too long for one thread.
2. It was my first time posting...although I think I put that right up front.
Wow, that sure too you quite a long time! But I fully agree with your statement about the report of the survey, its complete bs.
This leftist "report" like all the others before it on any number of topics is but propaganda...
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