Friday, November 17, 2006

Baby steps and rubber sheets

From The Washington Post:
WASHINGTON - Pentagon guidelines that classified homosexuality as a mental disorder now put it among a list of conditions or "circumstances" that range from bed-wetting to fear of flying.

The new rules are related to the military's retirement practices. The change does not affect the "don't ask, don't tell" policy that prohibits officials from inquiring about the sex lives of service members and requires discharges of those who openly acknowledge being gay.

The revision came in response to criticism this year when it was discovered that the guidelines listed homosexuality alongside mental retardation and personality disorders.

Slowly, slowly, the American military establishment slouches into the 21st century. I'll bet that within a decade the use of phrenology to assess soldiers' worthiness for promotion will be all but extinct. The use of trepanning to remove the insane-making humours from the skulls of shell-schocked troops is probably here to stay, however.

Here are some of the current "conditions" that lead to discharge, according to the article: "stammering or stuttering, dyslexia, sleepwalking, motion sickness, obesity, insect venom allergies and homosexuality."

Hey, combine all eight of you've got a potential laff-riot of a movie! Disorderly Discharge! starring Paul Lynde.

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