The Gay Bomb

6.13.2007

By Mark Simpson

The Pentagon's love affair with the Gay Bomb also hints heavily that ticking away at the heart of its opposition to lifting the ban on gays serving, which involved much emphasis on the 'close conditions' (cue endless TV footage of naked soldiers and sailors showering together) was an anxiety that if homosexuality wasn't actively discouraged the U.S. Armed Forces would quickly turn into one huge, hot, military-themed gay orgy'that American fighting men would be too busy offering themselves to one another to defend their country. I sympathize. I too share the same fantasy'but at least I know it's called gay porn.

Whatever its motivations or rationalizations, the DADT policy of gay quarantine has resulted in thousands of discharges of homosexuals and bisexuals from the U.S. Armed Forces, even at a time when the military is having great difficulty mobilizing enough bodies of any sexual persuasion and is currently being publicly questioned. But the Pentagon seems unlikely to budge its institutional back from the proverbial wall. Its top commander, Marine Gen. Peter Pace, recently defended the policy in outspoken terms, saying: 'I believe that homosexual acts between two individuals are immoral and that we should not condone immoral acts.' (The good General probably didn't mean to suggest that homosexual acts involving only one person or more than two were not immoral.)

Don't Ask, Don't Tell, a policy that even Joseph Heller would have had difficulty satirizing, may be confused and confusing, and it may or may not be repealed in the near future, but it clearly shows that the U.S. remains dramatically conflicted about itself and the enormous changes in attitudes and behavior that its own affluence and sophistication have helped bring about.

After all, the Gay Bomb is here already and it's been thoroughly tested'on civilians. It was developed not by the U.S.A.F. but by the laboratories of American consumer and pop culture, advertising, and Hollywood. If you want to awaken the enemy to the attractiveness of the male body, try dropping back issues of Men's Health or GQ on them. Or Abercrombie & Fitch posters. Or Justin Timberlake videos. Or DVDs of 300.

Or even the U.S.'s newly acquired British-made weapons system for delivering global sexual confusion and hysteria known as David Beckham.

To paraphrase the Duke of Wellington: I don't know whether they frighten the enemy, but by God they scare the Bejeesus out of me.

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