By John Simpson
As many of my readers already know, I've written many stories that have revolved around men in the American military and have been happy to tell their stories. I've written, "Def Con One," a novel, and "The Barracks Affair," "Naval Maneuvers," "Night Patrol," as novellas, along with other stories of men in other countries militaries.
This stems of course from my own service to America. In 1970, when the draft was the scourge of many a young man, I drew my lottery number on my 18th birthday. It was over 300, which meant that I would never have been drafted like so many of my peers.
Instead of rejoicing in my good fortune, I spit fate in the eye. I enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and became a security specialist in nuclear security and law enforcement. From this experience, I drew the knowledge necessary to write accurate fiction as it reflects on military men.
Sadly, the United States is no longer the country that it was when I enlisted. We in my opinion, have gone from a country to be proud of in its reach for equality and freedom, to a nation bitterly divided by class warfare, and cultural differences. Instead of forging forth with equality for the gay community in this country, we have one of the two major parties doing everything it can to destroy the very semblance of the Constitution and the rights granted therein. We are no longer that, "beacon of Democracy," to the world.
I close my thoughts with a quote from my second book in the Condor series. In, "The Talons of the Condor," President Windsor says the following to a group of house members on the hill. If only the "real" members of Congress could see it President Jefferson's way.
“And finally, I wish to address a hot-button issue. The gay
community and their issues are due for attention. There is no basis in
Constitutional law to treat homosexuals any differently from any
other American citizen. Therefore, we need to bring to fruition the
most famous phrase from our Declaration of Independence: All men
are created equal. The term ‘men’ is gender inclusive and certainly
applies to women in every respect. Permit me to repeat the entire line
for clarity. ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are
created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain
unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of
“Thomas Jefferson, the author of that phrase, thought it so
important that he opened the Declaration of Independence with it.
Now, some two hundred and thirty-three years later, we still have not
achieved that goal for all Americans. Gay Americans do not have the
same unalienable rights as non-gay citizens. Why? The answer is
simple: in this case, the majority deems the minority undeserving of
those same rights. Much of the opposition to equality for gay people
comes from the religious right, who use God as their reason for
opposing equality. We have often in these great halls of democracy
heard the term unalienable rights. But what exactly does that mean?
“An ‘unalienable Right’ is a right that is not contingent upon
laws, customs or beliefs of a particular society or polity. Now, the
other definition of rights is one obtained through legislation, or the
granting of said rights by the legislature or codified into laws; these
are deemed legal rights. Please observe where Jefferson placed the
right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness: unalienable rights.
So Jefferson would say that there need be no special laws passed to
allow gay people to marry, for example, for surely that is the pursuit
of happiness which flows from said unalienable right. The same can
be said for liberty: the liberty to marry one who you love. Marriage is
but one issue. We must work towards total inclusion of the gay
community into the life of America by extending the rights of
Americans, both natural and legal, to all citizens."