Daily Dojo

81-Year-Old Gay Veteran Garrison Phillips Awaits Repeal of ‘Don’t Ask’ Policy

An article about my friend, actor and veteran Garrison Phillips, regarding the repeal of DADT is right here and it’s a must-read:

81-Year-Old Gay Veteran Garrison Phillips Awaits Repeal of ‘Don’t Ask’ Policy

A snippet:
(Nov. 10) — Garrison Phillips hasn’t worn the uniform of the United States Army since he returned from Korea more than half a century ago. He calls his time in the military “a very prideful period of my life, and I can’t imagine not having gone to do it.”

To show his pride, Phillips has marched for years in New York’s Veterans Day parade. He also is a regular at another annual event: New York City’s gay pride parade.

Now, at 81, the former actor is watching from the sidelines as gay rights advocates fight legislative and legal battles to repeal the Pentagon’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy that bars gays from serving openly.

“Our ancestors came to this country to escape persecution, and now many European militaries allow gays to serve without major disruptions. Yet here in America we’re not doing that,” Phillips said in a phone interview with AOL News. “It’s astonishing to me.”

Garrison Phillips
Mary Altaffer, AP
Garrison Phillips was part of the first group of gay veterans to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery, in 1987.

Phillips is among hundreds of thousands of gay men and lesbians who have served in the military and hope this Veterans Day will be the last during which their younger counterparts must serve in the closet.

RTRH: 81-Year-Old Gay Veteran Garrison Phillips Awaits Repeal of ‘Don’t Ask’ Policy … the whole article is great, so make sure to read it all.

On the personal side, I’ve known Garrison as an actor for nearly as long as I’ve been in New York City, he’s been in a number of my pieces, including the first big production of my play THE MEN’S ROOM, pictured here:

He actually created that role, and did it in another subsequent production of the show. He also performed in several workshops, readings and a production of my play TALLBOY WALKIN’ as Frank and I actually created the role, that of a retired Korean War veteran, specifically for Garrison.

I can honestly say that Garrison is one of the best, most decent and enjoyable guys I’ve ever worked with, a truly great guy, and good to see he’s getting the word out on DADT. He has a blog that you can get to here: Everyday Strolls | Senior Planet

Hat tip to the Man Who Would Be King for the heads up.

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