President Obama signed historic legislation to allow repeal of the 17-year-old “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy banning gay men and women from serving openly in the military on Wednesday morning, hailing the bill as one that will “strengthen our national security and uphold the ideals that our fighting men and women risk their lives to defend.”
“No longer will our country be denied the service of thousands of patriotic Americans who were forced the leave the military, regardless of their skills, no matter the zeal or exemplary performance because they happen to be gay,” he said. “No longer will tens of thousands of Americans in uniform be asked to live a lie.”
The president described the signing as “the right thing to do for our military,” as well as “the right thing to do, period.”
Passage of the bill represents a victory for Mr. Obama, who promised to end the policy as a candidate, as well as the gay rights activists who crowded into an Interior Department auditorium for the event. Many have harshly criticized the Obama administration over the past two years for what they see as a failure to move aggressively on gay rights issues.
Excerpt, read more: Obama Signs Historic ‘Don’t Ask’ Repeal Bill –By Brian Montopol | BBC News