White House DADT demo. 10 photos by Sean Carlson, Talk About Equality
Thirteen supporters of direct-action group GetEQUAL were arrested at the White House fence Nov. 15 after handcuffing themselves to it and supergluing their handcuff locks.
They demanded that the Senate join the House in authorizing repeal of the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell military ban on noncloseted GLBs before the Senate adjourns this year.
Arrested were Dan Choi, Autumn Sandeen, Evelyn Thomas, Mara Boyd, Geoff Farrow, Robin McGehee, Miriam Ben-Shalom, Justin Elzie, Ian Finkenbinder, Robert Smith, Dan Fotou, Scott Wooledge and Michael Bedwell.
Obama has said he wants Congress, not courts, to end the ban. And Justice Department lawyers argued in court filings that the ban must not be lifted abruptly by a judge because that would harm military operations.
The House of Representatives voted earlier this year to authorize the armed forces to end DADT, but the Senate failed to follow suit.
Meanwhile, the Pentagon has been conducting a massive survey of troops and their families, due to be released in December, to help it decide how to end DADT. Leaked reports of the findings suggest that a majority of members of the military are not troubled by openly gay servicemembers.
Some surveys have found that nearly 80 percent of Americans are fine with letting gays in the military come out of the closet by ending the DADT policy.