Pentagon proposes change in military anti-sodomy law

[JURIST] The office of the Pentagon's general counsel [official website] has sent leaders of the US Senate and House of Representatives Armed Services Committees a draft copy of a proposal saying that consensual sodomy between members of the US military would no longer be a criminal act. The change would bring the military legal code closer to the law governing civilians. Under the current Uniform Code of Military Justice [text], consensual sodomy is punishable by up to five years in prison. The new law would say 'forcible' sodomy or sodomy with a child can be prosecuted. Gay rights advocates including the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) [advocacy website] are praising the decision [HRC press release]. The change, if implemented, would not change 'the don't ask, don't tell' policy under which homosexuals can be dismissed from the armed forces for committing homosexual acts or openly discussing their sexual preferences. Congress would still need to approve of the change before it became law. Reuters has more.

 

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