Bodies, Desire, and the Future
Beware: Cheering the open incorporation of queer bodies into the imperialist project implies support for its horrors.
Your reaction, while plausible on first glance, seems to me superficial and ultimately misguided. Queer critiques of militarism and refusals of participation in the military are rendered more forceful rather than less now that we are actually allowed open participation in them. Even for a hippy pinko queer like me the abolition of DADT is a clear victory for social justice. It is hard to see how the selective segregation of queers from participation in an anyway-existing military (in an already militarist-industrialist-patriarchal society) represents some kind of boost for pacifism and anti-militarism the end of which is to be especially bemoaned.
It’s the patriotic celebration that I oppose, not the repeal of DADT itself. LGBTQ organizations across the country are gushing support for the U.S. military as a result of this decision. Don’t you find that troubling?
I disapprove militarism in all its guises.I simply do not agree that all or even much of the celebration of the end of DADT amounts to or seems to involve gushing about militarism. I would not deny that some of what you are disdaining is afoot, and I agree that any is too much. But I think you are too quick to conflate the two pointlessly and too slow to grasp the ways in which the case of queer anti-militarism might be strengthened by this turn of events — quite apart from the fact that ending discriminatory exclusions even from public institutions we disapprove of, and I would include marriage as well as militarism among those, is plainly also always a step toward greater equity and justice. It remains for queers to use the power and prestige of our rising status to struggle against the ubiquitous violence in our society.
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