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U.S. Air Force Academy graduates first openly gay cadets

Friday, May 25, 2012

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — In another historical moment in the post-”Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” era, the U.S. Air Force Academy this week graduated its first group of openly gay cadets.

Trish Heller, who heads the Blue Alliance, an association of LGBT Air Force Academy alumni, told ABC News that her group had connected with at least four members of the class of 2012 receiving diplomas this week who had come out publicly as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. There were likely others, she said.

Watch a report from ABC News:

ABC reported that gay cadets at all the U.S. military service academies have been forming clubs and support groups, slowly making their existence known online and at campus social events.

The Air Force Academy group – called Spectrum – was officially sanctioned earlier this month and had about 30 members from across all classes, its organizers said.

The “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, which prohibited openly gay service members, was approved in 1993 by then-President Bill Clinton as a compromise toward ending a long-standing ban on allowing gays in the U.S. military.

The policy was officially repealed in September 2011 after Congress passed a law in 2010 formally ordering repeal.

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22 more reader comments:

  1. Progress!!! Yay!!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:25am
  2. Hua! That’s what I like to see!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:26am
  3. I love Men in Uniform

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:26am
  4. One step at a time, over and over again!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:27am
  5. awesome

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:27am
  6. Love it, time’s are changing

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:29am
  7. about time

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:32am
  8. Finally!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:32am
  9. Rock on!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:33am
  10. hooya!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:34am
  11. Happy Memorial Day to ALL of our heroes!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:41am
  12. It’s about time……..If they can go to war and engaged in dangerous missions for their country the least we can do is to give them the respect, love and acceptance THEY SO DESERVE…..And we wonder why does so many around the world hate us Americans……..Thank you to the great forces and powers to at least let great men and women BE ALL THAT THEY CAN BE with RESPECT and DIGNITY after all we are the UNITED STATES OF AMERICAS.

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 11:41am
  13. Finally! :D

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 12:00pm
  14. so proud of our younger generations…so wonderful to see this level of “hey, like no big deal” <3

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 12:10pm
  15. Love this. Beautiful.

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 12:15pm
  16. Awesome!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 1:02pm
  17. a trifle behind times but great!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 1:18pm
  18. Way to go USAF!!

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 1:47pm
  19. Thank you God for equal rights for all. I just love to see great things happen in history.

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 1:51pm
  20. Congratulations Cadets and the sky did not fall nor the ground open up and swallow the world, right Pat Robertson?

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 2:25pm
  21. Hoo-rah Air Force. :D

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 3:21pm
  22. were making steps forward i think

    Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 at 3:41pm