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Gay Man Faces Navy Discharge

By Charlotte Robinson, March 31, 2011
We did it!! Robin McGehee of GetEqual just got off the phone
with Petty Officer Derek Morado, the servicemember who

was facing discharge today in California despite "Don't Ask,

Don't Tell" having been repealed 100 days ago. By a vote of

3-0, Derek was recommended for retention. Derek gets to not

only save his career, but walk prouder without the burden of

discrimination on his shoulders. This is Great News….:)

In December when President Obama signed the "Don't
Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act of 2010," we thought this was
the game-changer. Of course we were a bit skeptical about
Obama dragging his feet about the transition to make the
repeal fully inclusive & get it implemented. Especially
when the Obama administration refused to drop their
appeal against the Log Cabin Republicans after their case
found DADT unconstitutional in Federal court.
Today Derek Morado, Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class who was
outed by a fellow sailor in 2009, still faces discharge from
the Navy. The 26-year-old sailor will appear at a hearing on
the base today before a three-member panel that will rule
whether he should be discharged for homosexual conduct.
The hearing is not open to the public. Morado said he's heard
that no one has been discharged from the military for being
gay since October. He hopes not to be the first since then,
because he wants to make the Navy his career. "It's all I really
know," he said. "I've done it since high school. I just want to
keep doing it." Updates to Come…:)
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Robin McGehee said...

A short time ago, we were contacted by an active-duty servicemember, Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Derek Morado who despite the repeal “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” is still going through the process of being discharged. The process started for him on November 8, 2009, when someone anonymously outed him after seeing his MySpace page. Within weeks, his discharge process began but it limped along while the government waffled about what to do about repeal. A year went by before he got any kind of update, each day believing it was his last day to serve his country. After the repeal bill was signed into law, he believed his case to be over. But Derek got bad news earlier this month. Despite DADT repeal, his case is still being pursued and his hearing is scheduled for today. With implementation still not in place, is this the Navy's attempt to slip in another discharge or bully him with a hearing...just because they still can?

Robin McGehee, GetEQUAL Director

Derek Morado said...

This lengthy matter has been tearing me up; it has destroyed relationships and displaced loved ones who were relying on me. But even after the U.S. Government has made it clear they don’t want this law in effect the Navy has said that, because the paperwork has been submitted and the policy is technically still active, they have no choice but to continue.

I have been in the U.S. Navy since I graduated high school. It’s all I know and all I want to do. I have dreams of grandeur, hopes of retiring a young, highly-decorated, respected senior enlisted sailor. My resolve is weakened but not broken. I just have to place my fate in the hands of three strangers -- strangers who I hope have strong moral convictions and like-minded sentiments to my own.

Derek Morado, Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class

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