Gay troops face host of new challenges after repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’
By CHRIS JOHNSONcjohnson@washblade.com
Despite rosy pronouncements from the Obama administration and others about the supposedly smooth transition to open service in the military following the lifting of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” a host of new problems has emerged for gay and lesbian troops.Stephen Peters, president of the American Military Partners Association, said, “there are clearly challenges that remain” for gay service members following the implementation of open service.“These military families are still facing challenges that need to be addressed sooner rather than later,” Peters said. “All they are asking for is to be treated the same way as their counterparts — simple equality, no more and no less.”In the past week, attention has focused on state
Suspect allegedly shouted anti-gay slur before stabbing victim
By LOU CHIBBARO JR.email@example.com
Editor’s note: The jury in this case was still deliberating as the Blade went to press this week. Visit washingtonblade.com for updates.
A D.C. Superior Court jury began its third day of deliberations on Tuesday over whether a 21-year-old former U.S. Marine should be found guilty of second-degree murder while armed for stabbing a fellow Marine to death after allegedly shouting an anti-gay slur following an April 2012 altercation.Pfc. Michael Poth, who has since been discharged from the Marines, has been held in jail since the time D.C. police arrested him on April 21, 2012, minutes after witnesses said he stabbed Lance Corp. Phillip Bushong, 23, in the upper chest with a pocketknife on 8th Street, S.E., across the street from the Marine Barracks.Bushong was pronounced dead less than an hour later after being taken to a hospital. An autopsy showed he died of a single knife wound that punctured his heart.Gay congressional staff member Nishith Pandya, a friend of Bushong’s who emerged as a lead prosecution witness, testiﬁed that Poth called him and Bushong a “faggot” while the two stood with others on the sidewalk outside Mollie Malone’s restaurant and bar as Poth walked by.Pandya, who works for U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.), told the jury he’s gay and that he and Bushong, who was straight, were platonic friends.Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Liebman, the lead prosecutor in the case, said Poth hurled the anti-
NOVEMBER 29 2013 VOLUME 44 ISSUE 48 •
OUR COMMUNITY, OUR STORIES SINCE 1969
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DECK THE HALLS
Check out our guide for fab giftideas in home decor.
WORLD AIDS DAY
New photo exhibit honors locals who fought the epidemic.
‘Glee’ star MatthewMorrison in town forKennedy Center shows.
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A handful of states are defying an order from Defense Secretary
requiring National Guard units to follow Pentagon policy on providing spousal beneﬁts to gay couples.
WASHINGTON BLADE FILE PHOTO BY MICHAEL KEY