Center for Inquiry Releases Position Paper on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”

March 30, 2010

The Center for Inquiry’s

Office of Public Policy

has issued a new position paper calling for the immediate end of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) policy employed by the United States military. 

Upon the urging of the Obama administration, Congress has recently taken up legislation that would repeal the sixteen-year-old policy which bans openly gay members from the military. The policy prohibits any gay or bisexual person from disclosing his or her sexual orientation or from speaking about any gay relationships, including marriages or other familial attributes, while serving in the military. 


position paper

presents a detailed study of the arguments for and against repealing DADT. CFI’s research found that maintaining DADT has significantly compromised the quality, effectiveness and readiness of the United States military. Because of the policy, the United States’ already overstretched military has discharged thousands of valuable and experienced service members while also suffering a significant decline in recruitment. Two branches of the military have diluted their moral, aptitude and education standards to meet recruitment goals. DADT has cost the American taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars to discharge and train replacements for service members.

CFI’s position paper concludes that at a time when the United States is engaged in two major wars, it is critical that the military stop discharging valued service members that are crucial to maintaining its effectiveness.

CFI’s position paper on “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was authored by Derek C. Araujo, CFI’s general counsel and director of CFI’s legal department. Mr. Araujo is a graduate of Harvard Law School, where he served as a Senior Editor of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. Prior to joining CFI’s staff, Mr. Araujo practiced law at a major firm in New York City.

Read the full position paper


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The Center for Inquiry (CFI) is a nonprofit educational, advocacy, and research organization headquartered in Amherst, New York, with executive offices in Washington, D.C. It is also home to the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason & Science, the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, and the Council for Secular Humanism. The Center for Inquiry strives to foster a secular society based on reason, science, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values. Visit CFI on the web at