Archive for Dan Choi

The Army is sending bill collectors after Lt. Dan Choi for "leaving the military early".


I get emails:



The Army is sending bill collectors after Lt. Dan Choi.

They claim Dan owes them $2,500 for leaving the military early.  (And other gay service members have been charged nearly $100,000 to repay their "wasted" education and training.)

Yes, Dan did leave early and his training has been wasted -- because the Pentagon kicked him out for being gay. Now they have the nerve to blame him for it and demand reparations from a guy out of a job?

Tell Defense Secretary Gates to stop sending bill collectors after Dan, or any other veteran discharged under "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

During congressional hearings, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Mullen spoke of the integrity of our servicemembers as a reason why "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" should be repealed.

But where is the integrity in demanding soldiers, who are involuntarily discharged, to pay a penalty for telling the truth?

Secretary Gates has the power to immediately halt this retribution, as does his boss, President Obama.

We've heard from the White House many times in the past after they read posts on our blog. They're paying attention. Now, we need to let them know people like you are paying attention too -- so we'll keep updating our blog with the momentum we're building with our open letter.

The more signers we have, the more of an impact we'll make. Together, we'll keep the pressure on until the White House and the Pentagon call off the bill collectors and start respecting our gay veterans.

Can you help us ensure that the White House can't ignore our concerns? Click here to sign the letter.

Dan has stood by all of us, putting his life on the line for our country, and his career on the line for our community. It's time we returned the favor.

Stand up for Dan and demand that Secretary Gates stop sending bills to servicemembers involuntarily discharged under Don't Ask, Don't Tell.

Thanks for helping us stop this injustice,

John Aravosis and Joe Sudbay, AMERICAblog


BEST PhotOh! of the Year: Harry Reid, Dan Choi, and the Return of the Ring edition


My dear Twitter pal David Badash has posted details in his piece here.

This is by far my favorite photo of the year. Tears of joy:

Harry Reid posted the original photo here.

UPDATE:Here is a video of the back story, which occurred at Netroots Nation last summer:


Dan Choi Hospitalized


Via Pam:

We learned that Dan Choi, who sacrificed his privacy to take on a high-profile role as one of the public faces of the impact of the discriminatory policy of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, has been hospitalized and is in the hands of professional mental health practitioners at a Veterans Administration facility. Dan explained in his email...


[T]his is another gift to the community -- to open up a multi-faceted discussion: 1) the mental health toll taken by gay and lesbian service members; 2) the stressors that arise when also thrown into the public eye as a matter of fate or circumstance, not as a job.

Please go to Pam's place for the email and more.

Heartbreaking. Just heartbreaking. Choi is a hero, and he shouldn't have to go through this kind of pressure and pain. Sending hugs and nothing but good wishes his way.

And Pam, thank you for your sensitivity and for all you do.

H/t: 42bkdodgr


Former Army Lt. Dan Choi: "I am somebody! I deserve full equality!"


The message that the pro-Don't Ask, Don't Tellers keep forcing upon America is, some of us are somebodys and some of you are nobodys.

It's Us v Them, again:

Thirteen gay rights activists handcuffed themselves to the White House fence Monday afternoon, calling for President Barack Obama to work harder for repeal of the "don't ask, don't tell" ban on gay service members serving openly.

Former Army Lt. Dan Choi, the Iraq war veteran and West Point graduate who has become the face of the movement to remove the ban, led the midday protest on the opening day of the lame-duck session of Congress, to put pressure on Democrats and the president to jettison the law before January.

Choi and others repeatedly shouted, "I am somebody! I deserve full equality!"...

One man shouted, "President Obama is afraid to act." We know John McCain is. And we know Mrs. John McCain was against DADT before she was for it.