Though many believe some of the greatest military leaders of all time - from Alexander the Great to Julius Caesar - have engaged in sex acts with other males, and though certainly a very different political climate from that of ancient Greece or Rome, the United States military has historically never accepted homosexual sex acts within its own military, nor has the United States military accepted open homosexuals either until recently. This thesis focuses on the evolution of United States military policy towards homosexuals and the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT) policy of the United States military in order to recommend a path that the United States can follow to provide an equal opportunity for success of openly homosexual service members. This research traces the history of policy towards homosexuality in the United States military up through the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy and its repeal. This research discusses changing governmental policies towards homosexuals in the military, as well as changing public opinions about "Don't Ask, Don't Tell". This research also outlines discharges under the policy, connecting changing public opinion to the policy's eventual repeal. Through the analysis of statistics surrounding discharges, opinion surveys, and anecdotal evidence, this research evaluates the level of acceptance for openly homosexual service members in a post-DADT world. These findings will then be compared with the adjustment of troops in Great Britain and Canada, who each have experienced relative success in the integration of homosexual troops, in order to make a recommendation for a course of action that the United States could take in order to help better the adjustment of soldiers to a non-exclusionary policy.
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Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)
College of Sciences
Dissertations, Academic -- Sciences; Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Wansac, Alexis, "Don't Ask, Don't Tell: A History, Legacy, and Aftermath" (2013). HIM 1990-2015. 1513.