According to new data compiled by the gay rights group Servicemembers United, the U.S. military's 'Don't Ask Don't Tell' ban on gays and lesbians serving openly in the military has disproportionately affected minorities and women: 'Don't ask, don't tell' affects women, minorities more.
This USA Today article opens with the story of Julianne Sohn, who was discharged from the Marines in 2008 under 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell':
For the nine years Julianne Sohn was in the military, she lived a double life.Defense Department numbers show that in 2008, 45% of troops discharnged under DADT were minorities, while minorities were 30% of the service. Women accounted for 34% of the discharges but were 14% of the military.
She was a Marine and a lesbian. After a 2005 tour of duty in Iraq, she decided to speak out against the ban on gays and lesbians serving openly in the military.
Three years later, after an investigation, she was discharged under the Pentagon's "Don't ask, don't tell" policy.
Sohn, who is of Korean descent, was one of 209 women and 279 minorities among the 619 troops discharged in 2008 under the 17-year ban.
" 'Don't ask, don't tell' is like a snapshot of institutional prejudice," says Sohn, 33, a Los Angeles police officer.
Both the House and the Senate Armed Services Committee are expected to vote on whether to repeal Don't Ask Don't Tell today: DADT Repeal Vote: Congress To Vote On Military Gay Ban.