So DADT repeal won’t wreck the armed forces and leave us naked to our enemies.Â The Marines’ honor has been a little besmirched by that noble service registering the highest fraction (40-60% compared to 30% average for the whole military)Â expecting negative effects, but they will get over it and they will follow orders with good will as they always do.Â In ten or even five years, we will be as puzzled that we tolerated institutionalized military anti-gay bigotry as we are now that we used to allow people to fill an airplane cabin with cigarette smoke.
At the press conference, someone asked about separate housing and bathrooms.Â This one always gives me a laugh, because it depends on fundamentally misunderstanding what sexual preference means for social convention. Recall the riddle: If you have twelve black and twelve brown socks in a drawer in a dark room, how many do you have to take with you into the light to be sure you have a pair?
Bathrooms, locker rooms, and sleeping quarters separate by sex derives from some version of the old Spanish convention that if a man and a woman were alone together, it would be an unthinkable reflection on the man’s masculinity to imagine that they didn’t have sex, therefore architecture and behavioral rules are directed at preventing two people of whom one might be sexually attractive to the other to be alone together, or together undressed, or at least alone together undressed.Â If we want to generalize this convention to homosexuals of both sexes, before we even ask about the cost of “separate quarters”,Â we have to ask, “separate for whom?”Â Generalizing the rule for straight people to gays would require two dormitory/barracks, one each for known-to-be-straight men and women, a double room for each available pair ofÂ gay man/lesbian woman, and singles for every remaining gay person.Â Don’t even think about all the “unisex” single bathrooms*.Â A gay men’s barracks, for example, would be the chastity equivalent of a coed one for straights.
You need three socks, not thirteen, because a pair of socks is two of the same color, not one of each color.Â A population with gay people in it means couples aren’t necessarily one of each sex, and if not having sex is what matters, doors and signs are not going to do the job.Â It will have to happen the way most people in modern societies don’t have sex when they could but don’t, which is almost all the time (just look around you): byÂ not doing it with unwilling partners, or with subordinates, or when it’s otherwise ill-advised.Â Big deal; next issue.
*I give up; why is a bathroom specifically available to two sexes, one person at a time, called unisex and not uniperson?