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06-04-2010, 12:19 PM   #1
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Same sex lovers in the military.

Yes I know its all been closed down amongst the usual mud slinging and ego preening and bashing but I don't think anybody mentioned the Greeks (ancient) in the thread-

Spartans

And it wasn't just the Greeks, Empower Hadrian of Rome (he of the wall) had a few celebrated male lovers as well, which just goes to show that we have probably been having these arguments from time immemorial.

06-04-2010, 12:29 PM   #2
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Did you bring this up to advocate for or against the inclusion of gays in the military??
06-04-2010, 12:56 PM   #3
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I brought it up to highlight the fact that homosexuality in the military is hardly something new or never been debated before, so why al the fuss now? To answer my own question it is because Christian/Muslim based societies are as a whole imbibed with the notion (or certainly were) that homosexuality is a corrosive influence upon the the social fabric and that this idea is found in its purest form in military institutions where 'manhood' is prized above all else.

However, it is worth noting that Spartan culture discouraged sexual freedom between the genders in youth so males were expected to express their passions and desires with fellow soldiers. It was a very tightly controlled militaristic society with deviations from what was expected being punished. Homosexuality was not discouraged but femininity in boys most certainly was. It was a way of life rather than natural desire, a situation at odds with present military units around the globe.
06-04-2010, 01:10 PM   #4
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Well, yes, Justin, ...actually, most ideas of 'machismo' that come out of Christianity have only recently been attached to notions in most places of *effeminacy,*... even in the modern day, as all important guys are concerned, in a lot of Latin cultures, as long as you aren't the receptive partner past a certain age, it's not considered 'feminine' to be gay.

Which has its own inherent issues, of course, but somehow America's become even more hung up than *that.*


Still there's some truth to 'An army of lovers can never be defeated.'

It's not that straights can't *fight,* but they're always instinctively trying to save their own gonads.

I'm teasing, but there's a grain of truth to that, too, ...for the same reason so many are all homophobic, they're also, overly personally-competitive, in their thinking at least, in ways that aren't always the most social. Their own personal offspring (and how to make them) are a *big* deal, whereas, maybe to some others, *everyone's* offspring matter to you.

In a fight, well, who's the most of a team player? Someone with a kid to go home to, or a home to go make a kid in, or someone who tends to see ideals and the unit as family? You know?

06-04-2010, 02:59 PM   #5
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Getting a little late over here so I shall part with a an old joke that kind of sums it up.

Two ex army fellows enjoying an after dinner cigar at their club.

"I say Cecil, did you hear that they found Carruthers at last"?

"Good lord, where was that"?

"In the jungle old boy, apparently he was found up tree living with a monkey."

A moments pause before Cecil awkwardly clears his throat.

"Ahem, tell me, was this monkey male or female"?

"Female of course, nothing wrong with old Carruthers"

Last edited by justinr; 06-05-2010 at 12:07 AM.
06-04-2010, 03:13 PM   #6
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It's 2010:

When is civilization going to get past this homophobia and discrimination?
06-04-2010, 05:05 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
It's 2010:

When is civilization going to get past this homophobia and discrimination?
Actually, it's a super-secret program to begin training LBGT people for combat and SERE from tender pre-pubescent ages. We're conditioned to handle extreme hardship, torture, and totally-irrational mental conditioning, just in case the Motherland should ever need us.

In which case bad guys are in for a bad day. But that's classified. Obviously....
06-04-2010, 07:16 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
It's 2010:

When is civilization going to get past this homophobia and discrimination?
Never. If it's not one thing or another, it's Canikon, or Mac's or...name your group.

06-04-2010, 08:35 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
Never. If it's not one thing or another, it's Canikon, or Mac's or...name your group.
If only it *were* as trivial as brand wars or console was or whatever stuff.


Sad to say, SpecialK, it's not.

I didn't end up in the hospital three times before I even got to high school over a camera brand. And that was just when I got caught actually knocked unconscious, or not recovering quick enough. You did *not* want to get caught having been knocked unconscious then.

It's probably going to look just as stupid one day, but it's. Sadly real, whatever the hel it was supposed to be about.

Last edited by Ratmagiclady; 06-04-2010 at 08:42 PM.
06-05-2010, 12:14 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
It's 2010:

When is civilization going to get past this homophobia and discrimination?
Perhaps it should be a question of turning the clock back. A regular lover of Oscar Wilde was a sergeant in the British Army and in one of his autobiographical accounts Spike Milligan mentions a group of gay staff officers in Italy around 1944.
06-05-2010, 02:27 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by justinr Quote
Perhaps it should be a question of turning the clock back. A regular lover of Oscar Wilde was a sergeant in the British Army and in one of his autobiographical accounts Spike Milligan mentions a group of gay staff officers in Italy around 1944.
Well, we're talking British Officers, and therefore British aristocracy. All those years at boys-only boarding schools...

As long as you didn't use your fish fork for the salad course. That was a hanging offence.

Then again, if you turn back the clock in the US Army back to 1944, they're gonna have to start kicking out the black soldiers.
06-05-2010, 02:48 AM   #12
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All those years at boys-only boarding schools...


They have an awful lot to answer for, as will the seminaries in due course. The British public school system was designed to mould boys into defenders of the empire, very much like seminaries in fact.
06-05-2010, 03:52 AM   #13
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I think that much of the discussion about gays in the military is misdirected. The real underlying concern is needing to avoid romances within an operational unit.

A romantic relationship within a group may well lead to divided loyalties and conflicts of interest. It doesn't matter if a romance within a group is straight or gay. It doesn't matter if the group is a military fighting unit or a civilian business unit or a rock band. Romance within a functional unit can easily lead to disintegration of unit effectiveness.

I suspect that the inclusion of straight women in traditionally men's units (and vis-versa) may be equally or more disruptive than the inclusion of homosexuals in either gender group. At least most homosexuals are discrete, having been forced to learn discretion by society.

Last edited by newarts; 06-05-2010 at 03:58 AM.
06-05-2010, 08:14 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by justinr Quote
They have an awful lot to answer for, as will the seminaries in due course. The British public school system was designed to mould boys into defenders of the empire, very much like seminaries in fact.
Yeah, I went to a Scottish-themed Antipodean clone of one of those schools. Fortunately, we had girls. Unusually for such a school, we also had good uniforms. None of that turn-of-the-Century Three Men In A Boat stuff.

It doubly pisses me off. Because they served the same purpose down here - defending Engla- er, Britain - a country which none of the students would have ever bloody seen.
06-05-2010, 11:09 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by newarts Quote
I think that much of the discussion about gays in the military is misdirected. The real underlying concern is needing to avoid romances within an operational unit.

A romantic relationship within a group may well lead to divided loyalties and conflicts of interest. It doesn't matter if a romance within a group is straight or gay. It doesn't matter if the group is a military fighting unit or a civilian business unit or a rock band. Romance within a functional unit can easily lead to disintegration of unit effectiveness.

I suspect that the inclusion of straight women in traditionally men's units (and vis-versa) may be equally or more disruptive than the inclusion of homosexuals in either gender group. At least most homosexuals are discrete, having been forced to learn discretion by society.
Excellent point, newarts.
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