I was 19 when I first had full-on sex with another man. I was at college, living in dorms, and the experience—aside from the usual horrifying awkwardness and somewhat spontaneity of the occasion—was completely and utterly unremarkable aside from one thing: the guy I slept with identified as straight. It was late or early, depending on your outlook on the world when I was joined by the boy who was living in the room next to mine, way back on the other side of the building. He was clearly intoxicated, but it was a party after all and who was I, quite drunk myself, to judge. The minutiae of exactly how things developed from us being together in that room to us having slightly unsuccessful sex in a bathroom in a different corridor have since escaped me. All I know is that one moment we were talking and the next minute, well
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The United States military formerly excluded gay men , bisexuals , and lesbians from service. In , the United States Congress passed, and President William "Bill" Clinton signed a law instituting the policy commonly referred to as " Don't ask, don't tell " DADT which allowed gay, lesbian, and bisexual people to serve as long as they did not reveal their sexual orientation. Although there were isolated instances in which service personnel were met with limited success through lawsuits, efforts to end the ban on openly gay, lesbian, and bisexual people serving either legislatively, or through the courts initially proved unsuccessful. In , two federal courts ruled the ban on openly gay, lesbian, and bisexual service personnel unconstitutional, and on July 6, , a federal appeals court suspended the DADT policy.
Sexual orientation in the United States military
The threat of exposure was real and ever-present for these entertainers. Per Tyrnauer, studio contracts contained so-called "moral clauses" that could instantly vaporize a lucrative career. Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Police Department's vice squad were all too willing to bust celebrities, often working in cahoots with the press in their quest to hobble reputations.
The sergeant and I stared at each other for a moment as the office door shut. Only seconds earlier, we both stood silent, hands clasped behind our backs respectfully, as a noncommissioned officer stood inches from my face and threatened to end my career. As we left the office, the sergeant searched for something consolatory to say. His words, and any comfort I might have taken from them, fell flat. I sat, staring at my computer screen, trying to recall what task I had been working on.