creyente saidBoth of these men are heroes. Each in their own way.
While certainly Dan Choi stood to gain from his actions, there is no doubt in my mind that he was also working for the greater good of the community.
To say that someone is not a hero because they may stand to gain from their efforts, diminishes the lives of many: Martin Luther King, Gandhi, Desmond Tutu, George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, etc.
I am not saying Dan Choi is of the same caliber of these gentlemen, simply that his goals were no less honorable.
He willingly embarked upon a path that made him a target in order to change unjust laws. He went through a great deal of struggle in order to live up to the military standard of honesty and integrity.
While Victor Fehrenbach and other soldiers may also stand to benefit from being in the armed services, the risks they take also far out weigh the rewards. These are brave individuals whose accomplishments should be respected. However, all of them stand to gain from their service.
To diminish the accomplishments of any of these individual simply because we do not agree upon the path taken or the motivation for their cause only shows our own lack of understanding of true heroism.
RiverRising saidBecause Dan outed himself and Victor was outed. There is a significant difference between the two.
So you are saying that Dan Choi is a pariah because he chose to come out instead of being outed? If he had remained in the closet and been outed he would be a hero?
I think what he meant is that Dan Choi chose to come out for political reasons, whereas Victor was just trying to do his job with no choice in the matter. I can agree in some way. A hero is someone who puts others' needs in front of their own. However, while Choi chose to come out for personal gain, you can also look at it that he did so, thinking that it may help others like himself.
That's a lovely philosophy. Really.
However, Dan outed himself during a time of war. That's not what I would call heroic. Pussyfooted, perhaps, but heroic? When so many other gays are in the Middle East giving their lives, Dan Choi conveniently comes out and gets stuck here in the states. Now that's faaaaantastic heroism.
Dan Choi is far more worthy of being called a hero than anyone who sits at their computer criticizing and undercutting the brave sacrifices of any gay solider. So he came out instead of being outed- big deal. Since then he's done great things to keep DADT in the media and the minds of the American people. Shame on anyone who would call chaining oneself to the White House a "pussyfooted" move. We all owe this man our respect and gratitude, so keep your mouth shut if all you have to say are insults and demeaning comments.
If you want to criticize anybody, why don't you join a branch of the armed forces. Then I'll take what you have to say to heart.
Shame on you for thinking that chaining yourself to the White House is worthy of anything other than scrutiny.
You can give this man all the respect you feel he deserves. Many of us gay military men and women don't feel that way. I hate to speak for others since I realize it holds no water, but this is a fact. In fact, I'd argue that he has done more harm than good for active gay military service men/women.
Bravery and sacrifice does not include outing yourself during a time of war. Bravery and sacrifice involves keeping your mouth shut and putting your country before your own selfish interests. Come out after the war has ended, or after the repeal of DADT, not before.
If you don't understand that ... piss on you.
In response to lissenup's post, more than 400,000 National Guard troops have served in Afghanistan and Iraq, according to a congressional report.
National Guard troops do serve in the Middle East. Choi wasn't retired, he was still active.
And Choi had nothing to do with the formation of Knights Out. It was the merger of USNA Out and SAGALA that brought about Knights Out. Choi served on the board for a brief period (he's no longer on the board), but his "heroic" actions had nothing to do with the organization's formation,