Gays-in-military issue cost Sam Nunn the Pentagon

U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn of Georgia was a casualty of Bill Clinton’s decision to make gays in the military the first big issue of his presidency, according to Taylor Branch’s new book, “The Clinton Tapes.”

This from the New York Review of Books:

David Mixner and other leaders of the gay community had advised him against taking up the cause so early. Clinton drove ahead in spite of their advice, and gave a taste of victory to enemies who would prove relentless.

There would be other casualties from this early defeat. Clinton thought of appointing Senator Sam Nunn as secretary of defense in 1996, but the memory of photographs of Nunn touring a navy ship and shivering at the prospect of gay sailors in such close quarters assured a veto of his nomination by the liberal wing of the party.

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23 comments Add your comment

Krooked Kasim

October 16th, 2009
11:38 am

Kasim Reed does not support gay marraige!


October 16th, 2009
11:43 am

don’t ask don’t tell is such a stupid policy. unit cohesion was probably the same argument used to separate troops by race.

The Snark

October 16th, 2009
12:24 pm

Like it or not, there have always been gays in the militiary (starting with Baron von Steuben in the Continental Army) and there always will be. The only question is whether we are going to make them hide it.


October 16th, 2009
1:13 pm

And rightly so!


October 16th, 2009
1:23 pm

Atlanta has long been known as a gay mecca. If I were Reed, I’d reconsider my postion. The gay commnunity carries a lot of weight in the city.


October 16th, 2009
1:46 pm

Wow, Mr. Galloway. Thank god for Nunn or we would have gay sailors. That was close. The whole time I was in the Air Force — OUR Air Force — there were no gays on any of the six bases at which I was stationed. Or, I am reliably informed, even in the adjoining cities and towns, and in the case of New Mexico, the whole state. Thank god. Else we would have lost the Cold War.


October 16th, 2009
2:55 pm

Mark is gay.


October 16th, 2009
2:56 pm

Sam Nunn’s being a bigot cost Sam Nunn any chance of serving in the executive branch. Mr. Nunn’s statements, actions and thinking when it comes to gays and gays serving the in the military are wrong. Those thoughts, statements and actions would be wrong no matter when Clinton chose to bring up the topic, or if Clinton never brought up the topic. Don’t blame timing. Sam Nunn was just plain wrong.

What you are doing, Mr. Galloway, would be the same as excusing David Duke’s past statements because someone else brought up race at an inconvenient moment. It would be the same as excusing Lee Harvey Oswald because Kennedy wouldn’t have been assasinated if he hadn’t been in Dallas at that very moment.

Please…. Nunn is a bigot. Why he made the statements when he made the statements doesn’t change that.

While I’m not a Clinton fan, he did the right thing by keeping his campaign promise and doing what he thought was right rather than what was politically acceptable. Nunn showed his true colors and it was those true colors that cost him any chance of serving in government again. You cannot blame Clinton for those true colors.


October 16th, 2009
2:58 pm

And I thought the victims were the many good soldiers drummed out of the military because of Sam Nunn’s blocking the Clinton Administration from doing what was right. Silly me. I didn’t realize Sam Nunn – a man who has a very childish view of gay people – was the victim.

BS Aplenty

October 16th, 2009
3:05 pm

Liberal hypocrisy knows no bounds.

While cudgelling the masses with their chants of “diversity” and “acceptance” in the military, it appears the administrators of Morehouse College have made a decision to limit the wearing of women’s clothing by male students. One wonders how the black community, bastions of liberal hypocrisy, can prohibit, with a straight face, the wearing of women’s clothing to campus functions. How you ask, can they prohibit such diversity? Answer, they’re liberals, and they can just make it up as they go. Will we see the ACLU take this case on? Don’t hold your breath.

The new Morehouse College policy would prohibit:

[the] wearing of clothing usually worn by women (dresses, tops, tunics, purses, pumps, etc.) on the Morehouse campus or at college-sponsored events.

Students that violate the new rules risk academic suspension.

Cameron Thomas-Shah, the student government co-chief of staff, is one of them. While working as a resident’s assistant (RA) he said he noticed freshmen dressed in a way that was unflattering to Morehouse.

“The image of a strong black man needs to be upheld,” he said. “And if anyone sees this policy as something that is restrictive then maybe Morehouse is not the place for you.”

Daniel Edwards, co-president of Safe Space, a gay straight alliance student campus organization said he has heard from students that are for and against the policy, but he believes it is discriminatory.

“Some believe that this restriction is what the entire policy is correlated around,” added Edwards. “It is all an issue of perception and what manner of image you want to prescribe to.”

Clearly, the liberal administrators at Morehouse College believe in diversity and openess until…, well, until it doesn’t suit them. It’s the Liberal Way.

Imagine the audacity of the U.S. military wanting to maintain unit cohesion with “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Someone maybe should inform the generals that at least they don’t have to worry about their male recruits wearing dresses.


October 16th, 2009
3:24 pm

BS Aplenty – while I’m not sure what your post has to do with the topic at hand, I am fascinated by the Morehouse policy…

Women usually wear jeans and pants, right? So I guess that means Morehouse students cannot wear pants. Heck, most women I know wear underwear. Guess that rules out underwear on campus. I’ve never seen a woman wear a jockstrap, so I guess that’s the new required clothing.

I’ve never seen a woman in Wing Tip shoes, so I guess that’s the new footwear.

Women are wearing baseball caps and fedoras, so they’re out, but I’ve never seen a woman in a Greek fisherman’s cap. I guess that will be the new cap of choice on campus.

As for shirts, hmmm, women wear Ts, As and button-downs, so I’m having a hard time coming up with something that might meet the policy. I guess there is no shirt manly enough, so Morehouse students will have to go shirtless.

CJ Dawg

October 16th, 2009
3:44 pm

Atlanta has long been known as chocolate city and a strong follower of gay rights. Makes me PROUD I don’t live there. Sounds like a buncha of gay blacks…lol.


October 16th, 2009
3:47 pm

Why isn’t there black outrage when sodomites equate sexual perversion to racial oppression?

I mean, seriously. What an incredible insult!

I think sodomite perverts should be on the front lines, in their own “special” unit, providing a barrier for the real military.


October 16th, 2009
3:47 pm

@CJ. We inturn are equally as glad you don’t live here with that attitude.


October 16th, 2009
3:49 pm

@Bob. I bet you idolize Rush too.

October 16th, 2009
4:01 pm

I think the AJC will not be happy, until they have pissed everyone in atlanta off!!

In Other News

October 16th, 2009
4:04 pm

Federal deficit surges to all-time high of $1.42 trillion
Go obama, you have done a good job so far. keep the deficit high and the dollar low.
America needs to be as poor as your native Kenya and you are making sure that happens!

Weaker Military

October 16th, 2009
4:11 pm

We have a weaker military today because of this policy. They have thrown soldiers out who speak Arabic (and that’s just one example). We need the best and brightest soldiers period and this policy henders us from that goal.

We are making progress and sooner or later this harmful policy will change. It wouldn’t take so long but we have to deal with bigots like that Bob guy who displayed his raw ignorance and demented view. Obviously he has some issues… he’s probably is secretly gay and cannot deal with it (that’s what the issue is with most of these homophobes).

Bobby Anthony

October 16th, 2009
4:37 pm

Sam Nunn is a good man.


October 16th, 2009
5:15 pm

I agree with Bobby. Sam Nunn is a good man. One indication of that is that he has backed down on this issue and after reflecting on it seems more open to change. Since he obviously is in favor of a strong military, I think has begun to see how this policy is making us weaker (like that previous post says). It took us a while to desegregate the military and this is taking time too.

Bill White

October 16th, 2009
8:08 pm

Bubba Clinton is responsible for 9-11 because he wasted so much time on social experiments like this. Sam went along with it and now he admits it was a huge mistake, but guess what, it’s too late, Sam. You’re part of the problem why those towers went down.
Now, it’s going to be far worse because Hussein Nobama will be responsible for something far worse, I fear. It might be something that include germ warfare on a massive scale. You see, Lil Hussein is spending time making nicey nice with evil dictators while jihadists plan their evil deeds. The big dark day might not even happen on Hussein’s watch. It might happen on his successor’s watch and of course the far left and MSM will blame the poor guy (or gal if it’s Mrs. Palin). The point is, don’t romanticize Sam. He has shown that he’s a weak leader who pals around with nutcases like Ted Turner. Thankfully he’s long out of gov’t and has been replaced by the Honorable Senator Chambliss. You far left September 10th McFly Secular Progressives don’t get it.

Support the Commander in Chief

October 16th, 2009
11:13 pm

Thank you “Bill White” for showing us once gain why the Republican party is headed toward permanent minority status. You are obviously part of the Republican base and full of resentment and hate for anyone different than you.

While that was ok a century ago, and you will squeak by in many states for another 20 years, maybe, the country is getting darker…yeah you know what I mean. Not only that, gays and lesbians are going to become full citizens under the law.

If I were you, I’d be trying to learn how to live and let live with others. I would also encourage you to do what you insisted of those who didn’t like Bush, and support the COC. Remember we had already been hit by this time under Bush, but instead our President is awarded a Nobel Peace Prize. Change dude, it’s a wonderful thing!


October 16th, 2009
11:16 pm

Angryvoter, I hadn’t planned to hijack this discussion back to the Morehouse dress code thing…

If a student at Morehouse wears articles of women’s clothing in an attempt to circumvent one of the other dress code rules, that’s wrong.

If they wear women’s clothing because it’s part of their sexual identity, maybe they should think twice about staying in an all-male college.

And on the CBS Early Show this week they showed new trends in women’s footwear, and men’s-style wingtips were shown.