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Six U.S. military veterans chained
themselves to the White House fence Tuesday afternoon in order to
protest the "don't ask, don't tell" policy. Participants, who were removed from the fence and arrested around 1 p.m., included Lt. Dan Choi (pictured) and Capt. Jim Pietrangelo, who were arrested
in a similar action last month.
The Advocate's Washington correspondent Kerry Eleveld tweeted from the scene around noon Tuesday:
"6 vets just handcuffed themselves to the WH gates again protesting."
By 1 p.m., according to Eleveld, all the activists had been removed from the fence and placed in a police vehicle about to leave the scene.
GetEQUAL has posted information about the action, which included a diverse group of veterans:
"Our hopes swelled when President Obama promised at the State of the Union to end Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT), the policy that discriminates against lesbian and gay servicemembers. But his words mean nothing without action. And he has an opportunity to take action right now. The Defense Authorization Bill (DAB) provides funding for all military operations, and it will soon be up for renewal.
"President Obama knows that the DAB provides a way to repeal DADT immediately. And he knows that repealing the policy quickly and decisively is the right thing to do for LGBT servicemembers and for all of the armed forces. But recent reports suggest that the Administration is trying to delay any law change until December or even later.
"Join us in supporting Lt. Dan Choi, Capt. Jim Pietrangelo, Petty Officer Larry Whitt, Petty Officer Autumn Sandeen, Cadet Mara Boyd, and Cpl. Evelyn Thomas as they take action at the White House to demand that DADT be repealed through this year's DAB."