DADT’s End Cuts Both Ways for LGBT Servicepeople
The end for DADT is near. That much is certain. The nation’s courts, the president/commander-in-chief, the Joint Chiefs of Staff and other military brass, legislators are all chanting a similar mantra: DADT will soon be dead.
What is not certain is the impact the repealed policy will have on LGB troops. While everyone, including the mainstream media, has speculated time and again about the impact DADT repeal would have on heterosexual military members and their families, not many have asked what would happen (other than assumed violence) to the gay servicemen and women.
One thing is for certain, with equality comes ... well ... equality. There can be no double standard. This may cause a problem for many LGB service members who’ve done their best to cheat the system. Light, it would seem, will be shined into the cracks and the way gay and lesbian men and women in uniform conduct themselves will be forever changed.
Case in point: marriage scam. I’m not talking about the age-old tried-and-true "beard." There are hundreds, possibly thousands of marriages that are a complete fraud to collect benefits. And now, the top brass is taking a closer look.
Currently, three Southern California Marine corporals are facing charges of defrauding the government for entering into sham marriages for financial gain. The fake marriage was hatched when a lesbian couple (one a Marine and the other a civilian) decided to live together off base.
The female Marine found a male Marine (whose sexual orientation is unknown) willing to get married, allowing them to collect a housing benefit. The civilian woman also eventually married a male Marine and collected government funds. The two women ripped off the government, not once, but twice, with sham marriages.
There was a time when all of this may have gone unnoticed. Those days, according to 1st Lt. Maureen Dooley, a Marine spokeswoman at Camp Pendleton, are over. "It doesn’t matter what their sexual preferences are, they will be held accountable," she said.
In addition to the fraud and larceny charges, the three Marines will have to pay back the military a hefty $75,000. If none of them can afford to pay the government, which I think it is safe to assume they can’t, they could face up to one year in a military prison.