Comparison of The Crucible And Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell

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In the most publicized gay bashing, the dead body of Adam R. Schindler Jr., an American naval radioman, was found battered and disfigured in a public toilet in a park in Japan where he had been serving [Sterngold]. After revealing his homosexuality to his peers in the army, he had been left unrecognizably mutilated and beaten to death. In response, in 1993, the Clinton administration initiated “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” [DADT] which meant that military officers could not investigate a soldier’s sexual preference without reason and a soldier should not voluntarily disclose it [McGowan 4]. Historically, the US military had never directly banned gays, only their actions of sodomy, but a change occurred during the World Wars after the Christian belief that homosexuality was a sin pervaded the military [Frank 1]. An anti-gay conviction that it weakened the military and demoralized the cause led to attacks similar to that of Schindler. Likewise, in The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, a colonial village found itself trapped in hysteria for justice, order, and retribution to weed out the “heathens” that disrupted the peace and infected their community. In both instances, preconceived notions and Christianity played major roles in the government policies that alienated the destabilizers of the society. Until the accusation of the more respected people, their questionable means of information and resultant punishments were undisputed. The prejudice of both modern military policy and the Salem witch trials is built on the misconceptions and stereotypes of the accused. The belief that gay men are feminine shorts-wearing, roller skaters invested with AIDS [McGowan 13] and the perceived image of a sex-driven gay contrasts the military’s “bastion of... ... middle of paper ... ..., Department of the Army, 2001. Print. Frank, Nathaniel. Unfriendly Fire: How the Gay Ban Undermines the Military and Weakens America. New York: Thomas Dunne, 2009. Print. Korb, Lawrence J.. “The Costs of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Center for American Progress. N.p., 2 Mar. 2009. Web. 9 Nov. 2010. . McGowan, Jeffrey. Major Conflict: One Gay Man’s Life in the Don’t-ask-don’t-tell Military. New York: Broadway, 2005. Print. Miller, Arthur. The Crucible. 1953. Reprint. New York: Penguin Books, 1976. Print. Sterngold, James. "Navy Plans Murder Charge in Death of Gay Sailor - New York Times." The New York Times - Breaking News, World News & Multimedia. New York Times, 4 Feb. 1994. Web. 12 Nov. 2010. .

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