Activism
5 min

Growing pressure on Obama to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell

Ahhh — nothing like a little civil disobedience!

For a second time in just over a month, US military veterans chained themselves to the White House fence, demanding the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

Activist group Get Equal tweeted today’s protest as it unfolded. All six protesters were reportedly arrested within an hour of chaining themselves to the fence. 



 
Six veterans chained themselves to the White House fence on April 20 (image via @GetEqual)

In a press release, Get Equal called on US President Barack Obama to quit stalling and repeal the ban on openly gay service members:

Moments ago, Lt. Dan Choi along with five other lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) discharged veterans — Capt. Jim Pietrangelo II, Petty Officer Larry Whitt, Petty Officer Autumn Sandeen, Cadet Mara Boyd, and Airman Victor Price — handcuffed themselves to the White House gates to demand that President Obama keep his promise to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” this year. The vets are concerned about mounting signs that the President is wavering on his promise to push for repeal this year.

Today’s action comes one month after Choi and Pietrangelo were arrested for a similar DADT protest at the White House in which they handcuffed themselves to the gates for a period of an hour, while hundreds of protesters looked on. The new LGBT activist group, GetEQUAL, coordinated both today’s action and last month’s civil disobedience.

“We are handcuffing ourselves to the White House gates once again to demand that President Obama show leadership on repealing ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ If the President were serious about keeping his promise to repeal this year, he would put the repeal language in his Defense Authorization budget,” said Choi. “The President gave us an order at the Human Rights Campaign dinner to keep pressure on him and we will continue to return to the White House, in larger numbers, until the President keeps his promise to repeal ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ this year."

On Monday night, protesters interrupted Obama’s speech at a fundraiser for Senator Barbara Boxer in Los Angeles. Watch the video:

 


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