A federal judge in Washington has ordered the U.S. Air Force to reinstate Major Margaret Witt, a flight nurse who was discharged in 2006 for violating “Don't Ask, Don't Tell,” the military policy that allows gay and lesbian service members to serve so long as they remain celibate and closeted.
After a six-day trial, U.S. District Court Judge Ronald B. Leighton found that Witt's sexual orientation had not negatively impacted her unit's morale or cohesion as the military had argued.
That is from Carlos Santoscov's "DADT Discharge Of Air Force Major Margaret Witt" (On Top Magazine). We needed some good news. And certainly Witt needed it. You have to wonder about people like Margaret Witt.
She could have 'moved on,' she could have hidden away, she could have done so many things and not stood up and fought back. It would have all been so much easier and there was never, ever a guarantee that she would win. She could have fought and fought in vain.
So you have to wonder because there are so many people who, for various reasons, would have just given up.
For any number of reasons, I'm sure.
But one reason someone might give up could be that they just didn't think there was any chance they'd ever triumph. Margaret Witt's demonstrated just how possible winning is. Even when it looks like a long shot.
Lisa Keen (Bay Area Reporter) notes this is one of two recent victories:
For the second time this month, a federal judge has ruled "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" violates the federal Constitution.
The latest ruling came Friday from the U.S. District Court for Western Washington, in Tacoma, where Judge Ronald Leighton said Air Force Reserve nurse Margaret Witt's sexual orientation did not negatively impact her unit's morale or unit cohesion. He said Witt's discharge under DADT)violated her Fifth Amendment right to due process.
On September 9, U.S. District Court Judge Virginia Phillips ruled, in Log Cabin Republicans v. U.S., that DADT violated both First and Fifth Amendment rights of gay servicemembers.
Finally, the tables are starting to turn -- as Tracey Chapman sings ("Talking 'Bout A Revolution"). Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"