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cadet blogs

DADT One Year Later

(The Cadet Experience, Class of 2015) Permanent link
Driscoll Photo Just a quick entry here…


Last night was the Academy’s celebration of the one-year anniversary of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. DADT, as I’m sure everyone knows, was the military’s discriminatory policy against homosexuals—if you came out, you got out. However, last year, the Armed Forces implemented a repeal of this policy and ushered in a new era of equality.


To celebrate the anniversary, CGA’s Spectrum Club (the first of its kind at a military academy—more proof that we don’t fit the typical stereotype!) hosted a formal dinner in the Officers’ Club. Various people from the Coast Guard LGBTQ community joined us in the Coast Guard’s only commemoration of the anniversary. For me, hearing their stories about life pre-repeal, and how they serve openly now, really drove home the impact of DADT since its implementation in 1993. As one speaker mentioned, over 13,000 people were forced out of the Coast Guard because they were LGBTQ. Sad indeed.


I’d like to close this entry by noting the importance of helping to foster an environment of equality for all my shipmates. As yet another speaker noted at the dinner last night, the environment aboard cutters and at isolated units still needs to be improved, so that all receive the same right to serve their country. I only hope that as an ensign I can help further that goal. Ship, shipmate, self—as you are taught during Swab Summer, always watch out for your shipmates. I am proud of the work that the Academy and Spectrum are doing to watch out for our shipmates.


More about Peter.


What Happened?

(Academics, Overcoming Challenges, Class of 2015) Permanent link
Krakower Photo Whelp. Back at the CGA, and man, is everything different. No longer being a fourth class, my life here militarily has become much, much (much) more relaxed. While there’s room to stop and slip by through the cracks, I still try to maintain my military work through my division (Recruitin!) and through helping the 4/c adjust to their new non-swab lives. I also was selected for a spot in the Color Guard, so that’s been quite a grand time as well doing those events. Academics this semester are much better than last year, and I’m doing great in most of my classes. From that aspect, life has improved greatly in Chase Hall.


While all that’s fine and dandy, to say it’s perfect wouldn’t exactly be correct. Command has basically eliminated late racks, and they are now rare to come by. Family-style breakfast every morning is quite the annoyance as well. Still, we live on. In comparison, it’s a small sacrifice for free education and a guaranteed job in the long run.


In terms of extracurricular activities, it’s been as fun as it was last year. Mock Trial and MUN are government fun for me, and now that I’m more used to the clubs, I’m getting better jobs to do. Glee Club/Idlers have had numerous performances, and we will be going on a MD/DC/NYC trip in November which I’m excited for. Fall Lacrosse also has a Maryland trip coming up, so that’ll be great as well! And to sum it up, I got the lead in our fall show, Don’t Drink the Water. So aside from memorizing more lines than I had things to memorize over Swab Summer, that’s also been a blast!


While I miss the Operational CG, the Academy is a different way of me to prepare myself for the future. I saw MKC Gonzales, one of the Engineering Petty Officers at my Station in Alabama, walk right out of Dimick Hall the other day. Proves the Coast Guard really is small, and you’ll see the people you’ve worked with all the time. He told me to keep at the academics, and now that I’ve seen what’s waiting for me outside these gates, to try to prepare for that when the time comes.


Go 3/c, Beat Physics!


More about Samuel.