June 20, 2006

Stuck in the Dark Ages

For your information:
A Pentagon document classifies homosexuality as a mental disorder, decades after mental health experts abandoned that position.

The document outlines retirement or other discharge policies for service members with physical disabilities, and in a section on defects lists homosexuality with mental retardation and personality disorders.

Critics said the reference underscores the Pentagon's failing policies on gays, and adds to a culture that has created uncertainty and insecurity around the treatment of homosexual service members, leading to anti-gay harassment.

Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Jeremy M. Martin said the document is under review.


The Center for the Study of Sexual Minorities in the Military, at the University of California at Santa Barbara, uncovered the document and pointed to it as further proof that the military deserves failing grades for its treatment of gays.


There were 726 military members discharged under the "don't ask, don't tell" policy during the budget year that ended last Sept. 30. That marked the first year since 2001 that the total had increased.

The number of discharges peaked at 1,227 in 2001, and had fallen to 653 in 2004.
No comment.

Oh, hell, one comment: Fucking ignorant bastards.

P.S. See this article, too. The document in question was written in 1996 and recertified in 2003. The article states:
Dr Aaron Belkin, director of CSSMM, expressed grave concern that the military continues to list homosexuality as a mental illness. "It's unclear why a DoD document would classify homosexuality as a mental disorder over thirty years after the psychiatric community acknowledged this is a mistake," said Dr Belkin.

He described new research showing that military psychologists and chaplains lack the training needed to monitor and treat the mental health of gay and lesbian soldiers. These professionals "may be hampered by confusing and conflicting [DoD] recommendations" in treating the mental health needs of gays and lesbians," according to research recently published in the journal, Professional Psychology, which also noted that some military chaplains practice "reparative therapy" on gay troops.

"This is exactly what you'd expect would happen when an institution is so out of touch with evidence about mental health," Dr Belkin said. "This misclassification reflects an orientation of neglect regarding gays in the military that's hurting our troops and [is] straining our mission."
Dr. Belkin is much more polite than I am.