In an appearance today at the Heritage Foundation, U.S. Rep. Allen West, a conservative Republican freshman from Florida and a former Army officer, was asked about the impact of “social experimentation” on our military, an apparent reference to the abolition of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy.
West responded (see the 30-minute mark in the video below):
“Let me put it very simple, the United States’ military exists to win the nation’s wars. When you join the military, it takes individual behavior and conforms it the military. Now, if we start to have a perspective and belief in this nation that the military conforms to individual behavior, then we have lost the understanding of what it means to be in the United States military. The rules are very clear in the United States military. If you don’t want to abide by the rules of the United States military, then don’t join.
But the U.S. military is not there as a social experiment and for those who will sit up there and say,