In buildings on military installations, it is common to see a rack of news papers and magazines as you walk in. On a few of those racks now lays a magazine put out by an independent network of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered servicemembers known as OutServe.
This is the organization’s second issue of the magazine and so far the publications have each been downloaded by around 6,000 different readers. Hard copies have also been distributed to 6 bases, and unit staff have started requesting subscriptions.
Not only is this a valuable training tool for commanders to train their troops in the face of DADT repeal, it is also empowering to those of us serving in silence. It covers a broad spectrum of issues faced by LGBT troops such as the pros and cons of the protection of Military Equal Opportunity, the effects of DOMA, and has a few heart-wrenching firsthand accounts from fellow servicemembers.
As interest in the organization and the publication spreads, OutServe expects to print 5,000 copies when their third issue is released this coming August. With talk of full repeal occurring early this fall, this might be the last issue of the bi-monthly magazine to be released under DADT. In anticipation of this being the case, they have selected an appropriate theme of “courage” for those members preparing to finally come out. Keep an eye out for a familiar writing style in this issue as they have asked yours truly to contribute an article.
In my initial post here on BattleLand, I mentioned how those of us affected by DADT have been robbed of our voice to speak out. I’m glad to see other military members who are actively serving have found the strength to come together and take a stand. I could not be more proud!
– Officer X is a young, gay military officer who is currently serving on active duty despite the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” ban on open service. He is a pilot and regularly flies throughout the world both in and out of combat. His views are his alone and do not reflect the opinions of the U.S. military, its branches, or any organization. Follow him on Twitter @TIMEOfficerX or email him TIMEOfficerX@gmail.com