By Chuck Strouse
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Sgt. Robert Stout is a great example. He is the first known gay soldier to win the Purple Heart. Robert, who is 23 years old, was recently wounded in Iraq while operating a machine gun, "spilling his blood for this great flag," to quote Mr. Martinez. Robert earned the right to wrap himself and his boyfriend in the flag. As he put it: "I know a ton of gay men who would be more than willing to stay in the army if they could just be open. We can't keep hiding the fact that there are gay people in the military and they aren't causing any harm." Meanwhile Israel, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and the UK allow gays and lesbians to serve freely.
Mr. Martinez, your position is utterly un-American. In this land of the free, everyone can drape themselves in the flag -- honored and brave gay and lesbian soldiers or even heterosexual bigots. In fact, Mr. Martinez, your letter is an insult to the flag.
Since some heterosexuals are known for their double standards, here's a bit of info about lesbians you may enjoy, Mr. Martinez. It's from The Wolf Ticket by author Caro Clarke: "The Women's Army Corps and other women's military auxiliaries attracted a large number of lesbians during World War II, with an estimated 50 percent lesbians in some units. Others worked for the war effort in different ways: as photographers, reporters, nurses, and fundraisers. If a lesbian's sexual preference became known, she was often tolerated because her work was necessary. In fact being a homosexual was not, by itself, grounds for military discharge during the war (this was introduced in the U.S. military in 1953)."
Now, Mr. Martinez, wouldn't you love to see such patriotic lesbians wrapped in the flag?