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Gay US soldier Dan Choi on hunger strike

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  1. This supposed hunger strike is stupid and childish – just like their previous stunts.

    Dan Choi is starving for ATTENTION, not results.

    These little carnival side-shows don’t change any minds or garner any support. They just make us look foolish.

    Nobody cares dan – have a sandwich or some cookies.

  2. Juan Juárez 1 Jun 2010, 8:08pm

    I don’t think this guy is a soldier. If he is, I’m hoping he’s not active duty.

    Protest on your time, not government time. Gay or not military bearings need to be maintained. What kind of soldier are you letting your sexuality get in the way of your work. Don’t you see that that is what ‘they’ (anti-gay) are doing too? They are are letting homosexuality get in the way of work when it shouldn’t matter. You’re just like ‘them’.

    There’s more than one way to skin a cat. Don’t wear the uniform to get notice, do it on your own!

  3. Do some people get let out of the asylum to write some of this stuff? “Dr” Kim, what on earth does you hocking your cheap website got to do with these people? Seriously, you’re either a total nut or a “internet-trained” quack if “Moses” is your prime example, but your comment has no relevance and is distasteful in context of this article.

    And Andrew, why on earth so venomous against one who wants to make a stand against discrimination? I’m not sure where you coming from here.

  4. Joe in California 1 Jun 2010, 10:58pm

    Keep up the good work Dan Choi. I applaud you. I thank you for your service to this country and I am very appreciative that You are fighting for my rights as well as everyone else’s rights!
    Why is there a study needed? What about just looking at all the other countries that don’t discriminate in their armed forces! That should be study enough! I’m sure there are plenty of studies already done with results that just don’t fit the DADT’s agenda.

  5. Joe in California 1 Jun 2010, 10:59pm

    Thank you to you also Jim Pietrangelo for your service!

  6. I agree Will, some bizarre comments here. Although I do think it is a little extreme for Lt Choi to be going on hunger strike, it certainly helps to keep this issue in the public domain – Obama promised to repeal it and I think his pussy-footing needs to end. No other country deliberated as much as the USA has on the issue – the UK repealed the ban on gay and lesbian soldiers overnight and nothing came of it. My partner was in the RAF for a number of years and while he did put up with some homophobia, he also had a lot of support from colleagues.

    Juan, Lt Choi is not in active duty as he is still awaiting the decision by the commander of the First Army and the National Guard Bureau so he is still technically a soldier. And I’m amazed that you think he should stay in the closet just because he is in the military. Many soldiers, naval officers and air force officers are able to communicate freely with their families, and can enjoy the perks of having their families nearby in military bases – gay and lesbian officers do not have that option. They are expected to do a dangerous job and be treated as though it doesn’t matter that their partners and children have no right to be acknowledged. There have been many soldiers discharged because correspondence with their same-sex partners has been intercepted by nosy commanding officers.

    These men and women are asking for their right to a private life and that if they choose to discuss their life outside of the workplace – which is no different to a heterosexual talking about their husband/wife/kids back home – there be no penalties for them doing so.

  7. The demands for ending the hunger strike are unrealistic. There was no end date set for the hunger strike. This idea was rushed and not well thought through. I hate to say it, but if they had just one simple demand like stop the discharges until the study is done, then ok. But all these three will not be met and they will die needlessly. I don’t think history will look upon this the same way it has on other hunger strikes or acts of civil disobedience. What a waste.

  8. Mihangel apYrs 2 Jun 2010, 7:00am

    I am in two minds about this: on the one hand Choi is giving the establishment all it needs to discharge him on other grounds than sexualirty, on the other he (and his chums) are keeping it in the media – an embarassment to Obama et al.

    This is about more than being able to talk about your family. It’s about your partner being told if you’re wounded or dead, it’s about them getting the spousal support and benefits that straight soldiers’ spouses and families get.

    It’s not about who they shag, it’s about how thaty can be fully integrated into a unit

  9. Mihangel apYrs 2 Jun 2010, 10:06am

    ahem
    thaty = they (in certain obscure dialects!)

  10. pete the meat 2 Jun 2010, 1:33pm

    Is cock off the menu as well? If so I give ‘em a day before the hunger gets em.

  11. Juan Juárez 2 Jun 2010, 2:12pm

    Andrew – I did not say he should stay closeted. There are a lot of openly gay service members… They just don’t put on a uniform and protest about it. Everybody chooses their own battles and I think that this guy is risking so much for ‘his’ cause. If he wishes to do so, I say, ”Go agead’ but as a service member duty comes first. He, being an officer, should know that. Soldiers look up to him for guidance. I’m looking at this from a soldiers point of view. I don’t care about your sexuality just as long as you can do your job. It may sounds discrimanatory but, do you care if a person is straight and are able to do their job or a gay person who can’t do their job? Does it matter? It shouldn’t. What I’m saying is that mission comes first, regardless of sexual preference. If you want to be gay then be gay but when you out the uniform do your job.

    That is what makes us the best Army in the world. :-)

  12. Juan, you have completely and utterly missed the point I was making. I’m guessing if you’re frequently this off-target, you must be in charge of firing missiles for the US army. . .

  13. Juan Juárez 2 Jun 2010, 4:02pm

    Andrew, I’m guessing you’ve never been in the military then.

  14. “It may sounds discrimanatory but, do you care if a person is straight and are able to do their job or a gay person who can’t do their job? Does it matter?”

    Well, Juan Juárez, it seems to matter to the US Army, doesn’t it? You ARE aware of the ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell (DADT)’ policy of the US Armed Forces, aren’t you? In case you’re not, it’s the common term for the policy restricting the United States military from efforts to discover or reveal closeted gay, lesbian, and bisexual service members or applicants, while barring those that are openly gay, lesbian, or bisexual from military service.

    Its sure super that you don’t discriminate, really, it is, but that can’t be said for the “brass” of your army.

    And its irrelevant whether you’re in the army or not, the policy is hugely discriminatory. And does this “best army in the world”, the one if I remember that runs illegal detention camps like Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp, where detainees have zero human rights or the right to a fair trail, think this policy is fair, I wonder? Sounds like they have a track record of abusing the rights of the individual. Doesn’t sound all that “best army in the world” to me.

    I can see now why this guy protesting is such an issue for you. Perhaps look up the word “discrimination” in the dictionary before coming in here an spouting that militaristic I-don’t-think-for-myself-sir garbage.

  15. Juan Juárez 2 Jun 2010, 8:21pm

    This has nothing to do about me. The Army it’s own entity. If it matters to the Army then so be it, if you don’t like it build your own Army where gay people can serve as well as people who don’t want to go to war. The Army, wether you approve of their policies or not, works and it does because it has been around for a while. :-) I’m not here to attack anyone and I totally agree that this policy is not the best, my point is that it’s a soldier doing it. Those of you who have served know that this is out of line. What gets me is this ‘soldier’ in uniform loosing his military bearings. This guy should know better than this… Those who are serving raised your right hand and promised to obey and defend the constitution of the United States. We can’t have an Army with indisciplined soldiers. Where would our nation be? If you don’t like it, you don’t have to be a part of it and get out.

  16. “Those who are serving raised your right hand and promised to obey and defend the constitution of the United States”

    Your argument is blindly flawed. You take the “obey without question approach”. Good for you. But not all of us are automatons. Besides, the army “working because its been around for a while” is utter b_ollox, if you’ll pardon my French. History is littered with travesties and injustices by who were “just following orders without questions”. Being in an army does not mean you lose your identity. If you honestly believe that it doesn;t involve that, then you don’t know what you actually fighting for, or the US constitution and its so called freedoms the army is trying to uphold. Its an army, not an ant mount.

    You seem to think that an army should be able to discriminate, in order to work efficiently. I suppose if people thought that kicking out all Hispanics from the army, under a “don’t ask don’t tell” policy, you’d be okay with that? Because that’s exactly what you’re saying.

  17. dave carling 2 Jun 2010, 9:07pm

    Will, you’re wasting your breath on this toy solider. Remember, those who can’t think for themselves, usually prefer fighting – and this jumped up twat and his oh so wonderful army, the one that has committed more crimes against humanity since the Red Army, doesn’t know any better. Hence why he thinks gays should have their own army because they should shut up about their right to exist without persecution – what a complete idiot!!! Thankfully he’s over there in that country of inbred hicks with their belief in creationism, and not here in the UK, where civil liberties rightly take president over a military interests. But that’s what you get with a 200 year old constitution that been watered down substantially by successive right-wing governments:- a nation of programmed idiots who wouldn’t know freedom if it got up and mounted their granny, like our Sureños pal Senior Juárez here.

  18. Juan Juárez 2 Jun 2010, 9:18pm

    I didn’t say that they should discriminate. I’m just saying that it is what it is. Why would I join the Army knowing that they’ll kick out Hispanics? Makes no sense. I’m not trying to get out of context here. I’m just saying a soldier needs to maintain professionalism. This soldier is not showing any in his battle. He can kicked out for it and not because he’s gay but for defiance. I’d rather get kicked out for being gay because at least it would of been for something that I can’t control. One can control one’s actions. If all the soldiers acted in this such behavior this Army would go to waste, not saying this soldier is a waste. I’m sure he’s capable of so many but this isn’t the way to fight this battle. Do it out of the Army. I’m able to make up my own mind, the Army have their own policies and just because I want to follow their guidance doesn’t mean I’m against the cause. I want the cause to work but this is not the way. Regardless the mission needs to be completed.

    Call me all the names you want but I’m not about to call you none. Just having a converstation here. I still love you guys. :-)

  19. “Why would I join the Army knowing that they’ll kick out Hispanics? Makes no sense.”

    If this were the case, hypothetically, would you not find it better of the army changed its polices to allow Hispanics, as opposed to baring them which, as you said, makes no sense. Where’s the sense of baring gay men who can do the job? There is none. Hence, a brave man stands up to stupidity and injustice, and a coward blindly follows the policies and rules just because they are historically that way. Bear in mind the army has similar stupid policies against women and black people. These too were changed too.

    And did you Secretary of Defense in 1963, Robert McNamara, issue Department of Defense Directive 5120.36. “Every military commander has the responsibility to oppose discriminatory practices affecting his men and their dependents and to foster equal opportunity for them”

    So, not only is the DADT rule discriminatory without merit, its against the directives of your own army.

    Either way, following the rules because that’s the way they are is how progress is stifled and injustice reigns. In time, the DADT rule will be abolished. It inevitable. Until then, its brave men like Mr Choi who are willing to make a stand to oppose oppression within the army, compared to those who blindly follow the status quo without question. You are no Rosa Parks, Mr. Juárez, and courage comers in far more impressive forms than just been able to shoot someone.

  20. Dave, thank you, but I will try to reason first, after all, intellect is a far superior weapon. I don’t think Mr. Juárez is in the population of inbred hicks you refer to.

  21. Juan Juárez 2 Jun 2010, 9:59pm

    I’m actually finished. :-) You guys can keep undisciplined soldiers to protect you. I’d rather keep disciplined ones and gladly keep civilians such all of you who can are able to express yourselves because of the discliplines soldiers.

  22. “I’d rather keep disciplined ones and gladly keep civilians such all of you who can are able to express yourselves because of the discliplines soldiers.”

    What a truly stupid statement to make. Fighting for peace, is like f_ucking for virginity – it’s a contradiction in terms. My freedoms come from the will of the people, not the barrel of the gun. Maybe Dave was right about you…. not too hot in the brain department, are you?

  23. dave carling 2 Jun 2010, 10:35pm

    “I’m actually finished.”

    LOL! Sunshine, you were finished before you started, Will ran circles around you, and you were too slow to even see that!

    See, Will, I wasn’t being crude, the man is a typical dumb assed solider with the reasoning skills of a turnip. Thats not offensive, its just the simple truth of this kind of person incapable of independent thought. Lets face it, if this jumped up action man had any brains he’d have gone to college, not parade around a military base with a bunch of psychopathic clowns.

    And typical he thinks civil liberties come from his gun – not too bright on history, is he? But then again, most Americans can’t tell the difference between Austria and Australia, and don’t hold a passport, so its not that surprising their education system is appalling.

    He hasn’t a clue what he’s talking about, so he’s “finished”…. LOL! Ergo, I can’t answer your argument. Ah, the US Army…. doesn’t it just make you laugh?

  24. God you people are disgusting. I bet you wouldnt criticise Rosa Parks or other people who have had to take direct action. Women wouldnt have the vote without it and neither would black people. Congratilations to Dan Choi and Jim. They are inspiring.

  25. Juan Juárez 3 Jun 2010, 2:45am

    And I can’t think on my own by not thinking like you guys? So, just like I think different from you all I should be name called? Wow. I’m arguing something totally different from you guys.

    I agree with what you guys have to say but not his approach of doing it. I’m not going to try and change your point of view or even accept it but try to understand it… If you don’t there’s no reason of me going on since I was finished before starting. :-)

    I’m still here though.

  26. Dan Choi wore the uniform of his country and was sent by his President to fight for the country, and if necessary in the course of his duties, die for it. He freely gave that service to his nation and got treated like a criminal by it despite his spotless service record.

    In my opinion he has every right to demand that his country offer him the same rights and respect that any heterosexual doing the same job would get by mere virtue of their sexuality, regardless of the quality of their service or conduct. If the nation is willing to send someone to fight and die for its values it should value them enough to treat all who serve equally. It’s a twist on the old ‘no taxation without representation’ argument and it’s not difficult to see what the right thing to do is.

    The fact that the law which discriminates against him and other LGBT forces personnel is still in place and this ‘yes we can’ president is still dragging his feet to repeal it is a disgrace.
    If the president had half the courage Dan Choi has he’d get his pen out and sign the end of DADT into law before carrying on with his day.

    Dan Choi is a fine example of someone who stands by his principles. I hope he and his colleague get the change they want before any harm comes to them. They are doing this mainly for the benefit of others, not for themselves and should be applauded.

  27. dav carling 3 Jun 2010, 8:14am

    “I’m still here though.”

    Unfortunately.

    Look, you’re not making a point, you berating a brave man for standing up for his liberties. You seem more obsessed that he just shut up and play toy soldier like you. And we not calling you names, we’re spelling it out for you. See?

    Dan, Will IS supporting Dan Choi! There is only one person here criticising Dan Choi, and that’s our “yes sit ten hut” Juan Juárez here who weeps at the very mention of ‘killing for freedom’ and poo-poos anyone who want to speak out against injustice. Why he’s even here is a mystery, he’s not even gay!!!!

    The rest of us support this brave solider for standing up for who is he and the rest of the gay and lesbian soldiers who have no voice. Seems to be Senior Juárez doesn’t know the liberties he claims to want to protect by shooting people with his “gun of freedom”… what a goose.

  28. Juan Juárez 3 Jun 2010, 1:13pm

    :-)

    I didn’t say for him to shut up and play soldier. If that’s how you see it I can’t make you change your mind.

  29. dav carling 3 Jun 2010, 3:02pm

    Well, Juan, we also see on your Twitter pager that ‘Jesus is your best friend’. How wonderful for you. Perhaps a little bit of christian inspired homophobia and too much blind faith in the Army here prompting these views, eh?

    You go and believe what ever tripe the army feed you. Keep following the rules and shut up like a good soldier. There are braver men than you out there, and Dan Choi is clearly one of them. And most people here see that. I’m glad he’s offending people like you, you the brain dead army gutter trash of this world that runs places like Guantanamo Bay Detainment Facility, tortures prisoners in Iran and then takes photos of them for giggles, and illegally kidnaps people from other counties.

    You might think your army is the “best in the world”, but the rest of the world see it for what it is. It’s why you never see people burning an EU flag, but just love to torch a US one.

    Believe what you will, you’ll get no support for your cowardice here.

  30. Andy Leeson 3 Jun 2010, 3:06pm

    You’d think Dan Choi woudl have more support from his own army, but listening here to this Juan idiot going on about “duty first”, you’d can see how so many people let the abuses happen in the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq and never questioned it or did anything about it. Well done Dan Choi, at least he has conviction to stand up for his equality!!!

  31. The dont ask dont tell rule is in its death throws anyway. It was an unjust rule, and could never work in the long term. Typical of the conservative religious bigots to come up with something this stupid in the first place and think it would be effective. Hopefully people like Mr. Choi and Mr. Pietrangelo will put more pressure on the US Administration to remove this shameful rule and consign it to the history books as the embarrassing mistake that it is.

  32. “The dont ask dont tell rule is in its death throws anyway. It was an unjust rule, and could never work in the long term”

    Precisely. Well said. It doesn’t say much for the “land of the free” in that they let this policy even see the light of day..

  33. Juan Juárez 4 Jun 2010, 7:23am

    Trust me… I’m not homophobic. ;-) Who says ‘bff’? *giggles* Anywho, me loving Jesus has nothing to do with me thinking that this man is a soldier.

    Are any of you or have been in the military?

    Maybe then you’ll understand what I’m trying to say. I’m not trying to put this man down at all… I understand what he’s trying to do and I agree with that, just not his method. Nothing wrong with me thinking that just as you guys think is the right thing for him to do. I have no trouble you guys believing that…

    Regardless of what y’all think I can still talk to you guys without being insulting.

  34. Dave Carling 4 Jun 2010, 8:56am

    “Who says ‘bff’? *giggles*”

    Er, you do. Its on your Twitter site:- “Jesus is my BFF!”

    “Are any of you or have been in the military?”

    I’m not. But that’s irrelevant. Have you ever been to college? One does not have to be “in” something to form an educated opinion on it (except for college, you kinda have to go to that to actually pass judgement on it). I have a masters degree in sociology and politics from Oxford University, I think I’m accredited enough to make a simple estimation on basisc military policy, but thanks for asking. And no, I don’t understand what you’re trying to say – it seems that becuase he has a uniform on, he is supposed to accept inequality, intolerance, and the will of the bigoted religions hierarchy of his employer. The fact this employer is the army is irrelevant. If his sexuality is such an irrelevance to his ability as a solider as you say, then why is there a don’t ask don’t tell policy, and why if you “tell”, you get dismissed? Seems to me it is a big issue to the “brass”. Duty never comes first if it means sacrificing the individual or your self worth… that’s called a dictatorship.

    I can ask you, have you ever been to Europe…? If not, you should read up on it, the EU is light years ahead of the U.S. with regards to freedoms, civil rights, equality and liberty. You could learn loads from Europe.

    “I have no trouble you guys believing that…”

    Good. We believe Dan Choi and Jim Pietrangelo are brave. As this is a European site (British to be exact), not an American one, we don’t expect you to fully understand the nuances of civil liberties, given you think your gun is what grants them in America. Its okay, we understand.

  35. Juan Juárez 4 Jun 2010, 9:24am

    You so don’t get me and that’s fine. I’m not trying to change anyone’s mind on here.

    I know I say ‘bff’ I wrote it on my Twitter. It is irrelevant… Out of context. It’s not that easy, nowadays, to get kicked out of the military to het kicked out for being gay. Things are changing.

    I also agree that we could learn so much from EU and if you think that I think with my gun there is nothing I can do to change your mind. I’ve never said that. It just seems as though there are a lot of conclusions made from me saying that I oppose his ‘method of protest’. Simple as that. Just because I don’t agree with his way of doing it doesn’t mean that I don’t agree with what he’s fighting for. I choose to fight it a different way.

    I asked if people have been in the military because you’d understand a bit more on why I don’t agree but I guess it is not possible… Maybe I should of been a bit more specific, being this is a British website, if anyone in here has been or is in the US Military? The US military doesn’t have an open mentality. I don’t agree with it but it is what it is and I in the US Military one is not allowed to ‘have their own mind’ and I don’t agree but it is them, not me what how they think. This is all coming from where I see it… Do I agree? No.

    Keep on calling me names because that is irrelevant as well to this whole article.

    Just because you don’t agree with them it doesn’t mean that I side with them. Dan Choi and I have a lot of things in common the only difference is our battles. His way is completely different from how I am doing it but at the end we want the same thing.

  36. Dave Carling 4 Jun 2010, 9:38am

    “Just because you don’t agree with them it doesn’t mean that I side with them. Dan Choi and I have a lot of things in common the only difference is our battles. His way is completely different from how I am doing it but at the end we want the same thing.”

    Fair enough. I have no issue with that. Thanks you for clarifying that.

  37. Anthony Stanley 6 Jun 2010, 10:07am

    He can starve for all I cae. The military is no lace for social engineering. He knew what the policy was when he enlisted. He’s a selfish attention seeker.

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