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John McCain Reponds to Lady Gaga's Effort to Repeal 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'

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Two senators responded Friday to Lady Gaga's campaign to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," which included the release of a YouTube video featuring the pop star Friday morning.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) told a radio station he hopes Lady Gaga realizes the repeal effort is "a pure political ploy" on the part of Democrats, and Sen. Kirsten Gillebrand (D-N.Y.) tweeted she opposes the 17-year-old law that bans gays from serving openly in the military and is "helping lead the fight to repeal DADT."
Earlier Friday, Lady Gaga posted a seven-minute video aimed at McCain, Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), James Inhofe (R-Okla.), and Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) -- as well as "youth all over the world who are watching."
In a stark black-and-white video, Lady Gaga, wearing a black pants suit, white shirt and a black tie, sits in front of an American flag and asks the senators to repeal DADT.
She accuses the Obama administration of failing to protect 400 service members who have been discharged under the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.
Lady Gaga, who has become a serious and powerful advocate for LGBT rights, says DADT forces those in the military to "hide and keep private" their sexuality in order to serve. She says the law is being used to profile gays in the military, and that superiors are going through their private e-mails and belongings.
"Gay soldiers have become targets," she says. "In short, not only is the law unconstitutional, but it's not even being properly or fairly enforced by the government."
On Thursday, Gaga tweeted to her 6.3 million Twitter followers: "SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN is attempting to stop the DON'T ASK DON'T TELL repeal vote this Tuesday, with a filibuster."
She offered her version of a virtual Civics 101 lesson, with a bit of spin: "A Filibuster is a way to obstruct the Senate Floor from discussing or voting on a given LAW, + is essentially a tactic to hijack our debate." (In fact, filibusters do not stop discussion, only the vote itself.)
Friday, McCain responded to Lady Gaga in an interview with KFYI in Phoenix. "I hope she'll continue to pay attention, and to watch the debates on the Senate floor, and understand that this is a pure political ploy on the part of [Senate Majority Leader] Harry Reid and Democrats who see their majority slipping away."
McCain added, "They're politicizing national security. People like Lady Gaga need to understand that the military is a unique institution," he said.
Click play to watch the video.


"I am here to be a voice for my generation," she says. "Not the generation of the senators who are voting, but for the youth of this country, the generation that is affected by this law and whose children will be affected. We're not asking you to agree with, or approve the moral implications of homosexuality. We're asking you to do your job, protect the Constitution."
She continues in the video to tell stories about military men and women who have been discharged because of their sexual orientation.
At its end, she tells viewers how to call their senators through the Senate switchboard. Lady Gaga attempts to call her senator – Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) – on her Blackberry. The phone rings and she gets a busy signal. Lady Gaga smirks. She tries to call the other New York senator, Kirsten Gillebrand, whose voice mail is full.
She urges viewers to call Friday and explains what to say -- vote with Sens Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Carl Levin (D-Mich.) to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" and oppose McCain's "shameless filibuster."



Later in the day, Gillibrand wrote to Gaga on Twitter: "Thx for calling. I couldn't agree more and am helping lead the fight to repeal DADT. Do you have a moment to talk later today?"
The Wall Street Journal reported late Thursday that McCain may move to block the upcoming DADT repeal effort. It said that activists from Arizona-based Human & Equal Rights Organizers stood up during a Senate hearing on the security of the Korean peninsula and held signs with images from the civil rights era. One protestor's sign read, "Senator McCain, repeal 'don't ask, don't tell,' do you want to be the next George Wallace?"
McCain, a former Navy pilot, was a prisoner of war for more than five years in North Vietnam during the Vietnam War.
Lady Gaga's activism on GLBT issues took center stage this week after she appeared on Sunday night's MTV Video Music Awards program escorted by four gays from the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network. Media also noticed her back-and-forth tweets with Reid on the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" repealer, which is part of the Defense Authorization bill.
Her fans went into overdrive just minutes after Gaga tweeted her call to action. They retweeted her missive to thousands. One fan tweeted, ". . . #DADT needs to be stopped. Prejudice is a disease."
Another tweeted about what McCain may expect in the days leading to the vote: "McCains VM box=full, so lets send a million tweets/emails telling him 2 allow the Vote on DADT."
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lunarsatir

John McCain and the Republican rank and file had an opportunity to redeem a long trajectory of standing on the wrong side of history when it comes to civil rights...once again, they dropped the ball completely. Gaga is acting as any concerned citizen should, she is using her voice and money to try to bring about justice. The problem is that the majority of American citizens don't use their voice so they seem outraged when someone does. As for those of you who argue that this is a military issue. As a taxpaying citizen, I own the military as much as the next person. We would condemn this kind of blanket discrimination in private and public sector workplaces. Our military should be held to an even higher standard, in my opinion. DADT is a relic of dark time in our nation's history, like a remaining Jim Crow law. It's time the Republican party welcome the 21st century and vote for its repeal.

September 23 2010 at 3:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
fivehole84

It is nice to know that someone who will soon be irrelevant, Lady Gaga, wants to try to get involved in things that she doesn't understand. She should shut her mouth and work on her music. I am sure there is another song to rip off or some ridiculous outfit to try on.

September 17 2010 at 3:53 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
reaubo

Thank God we have Lady Gaga to set the record straight! For years I have heard "important" celebrities spout out their political nonsense but I think that we can truly believe everything she says. I mean, she is a big star now and the way she dresses and acts really shows everyone what a scholar and deep thinker she really is. We would all be extremely stupid to not to listen to her. I really think that the fate of the world will be determined by her very word. Lady Gaga for president!!!

September 16 2010 at 11:46 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
Rob & Kathy

What are we going to have next? Lady GaGa making national security policy?...

September 16 2010 at 11:17 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Rob & Kathy's comment
pgbrooke

Please explain how Gaga's opinion is any less relevant than Mrs. Palin's opinion?

September 17 2010 at 10:27 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
Carolyn

Get real!!! We are supposed to take seriously a women that goes to ball games in her underwear. I have no opinion on DADT. But why should anyone listen to any CELB. Most of them are crazy and don't live in the REAL world. The country would be better off if they never publicly voiced an opinion on anything but enertainment. What gives them the idea they know what they are talking about?

September 16 2010 at 10:45 PM Report abuse +7 rate up rate down Reply
jrmoross

Unless you've worn a uniform I think you should keep your nose out of this. That goes for congress and Celebrities. Let the military make the decision. Let the brass ask the recruiters who can ask the high school juniors and seniors. I've ask a few, I also ask a Marine just out of boot camp. They can live with DADT but their bad-ass rep goes straight to hell if it's repealed.

September 16 2010 at 10:21 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Bill Myhre

Let me see, war hero , Patriot John McCain. Lady Gaga....... nuff said.

September 16 2010 at 9:54 PM Report abuse +9 rate up rate down Reply
pgbrooke

Go get 'em lil monsters.

September 16 2010 at 8:02 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to pgbrooke's comment
mrjennelloal

im wit you,love nicki minaj biggest fan!

September 16 2010 at 10:03 PM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
garry402

What is this world coming to? Lady Gaga pro-Harry Reid and anti-John McCain while Snookie is pro-McCain. I can only ponder how Megham McCain will come down on DADT.

September 16 2010 at 7:53 PM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to garry402's comment
JJRFordGuy

Meghan McCain is for the repeal of DADT and she is also for Gay Marriage.

September 16 2010 at 8:06 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply

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