A group of leading constitutional scholars, including Akhil Amar, have filed a brief in Federal court in a case challenging the military’s “don’t ask don’t tell” policy.
“If the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy does not require careful and searching constitutional scrutiny, then the First Amendment is a dead letter in the U.S. military,” the brief states.
It also argues that ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ “offends a fundamental right of personal autonomy” by forcing lesbian, gay and bisexual service members to not only be secret about a fundamental aspect of their identity, but by also forcing them to affirmatively present themselves as heterosexual in public when they are not.
“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the constitutional experts say denies “the freedom of mind that protects the individual from being compelled to affirm an identity, idea or belief that is not his own.”
I don’t have a copy of the brief, but I’ve emailed Prof. Amar and asked him to send me one. I may have some analysis once I get it.