Gay Soldiers Offered ONE Chance to March During Pride Parade in Uniform
CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. — The Defense Department on Thursday announced it is allowing service members to march in uniform in a gay pride parade for the first time in U.S. history.
In a memorandum sent military-wide, the department said it was making an exception to its policy that generally bars troops from marching in uniform in parades unless individuals get approval from their commanders.
The Defense Department said it was making the exception for San Diego’s Gay Pride Parade that will take place Saturday because organizers had encouraged military personnel to march in their uniform and the event was getting national attention.
The parade last year had the largest contingency of active-duty troops participate before the military lifted its ban on openly gay service members. Last year, participants wore T-shirts with their branch name.
The Pentagon said the exception is only for this year’s parade in San Diego and does not extend beyond that.
[Organizers say] more than 300 service members have signed up to participate this year. It was unclear how many will wear their uniform.
The Defense Department said in its message to the service members that they should adhere to policy regarding behavior while wearing their uniforms.
Service members in uniform cannot appear to endorse or selectively benefit groups or individuals, provide a platform for a political message, or appear to be commercially sponsored. They also must ensure their presence in uniform is not intended to increase sales and business traffic.
…sorry for the long quote but I did not want to get this story wrong. This is definitely an accomplishment!