Wednesday, May 09, 2007


In 2004, Jason Knight was a petty officer, third class, in the U.S. Navy. He got married. But that only confirmed what he'd long suspected: He was gay.

Knight told his superiors. He was discharged under the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy. The military took his $13,000 sign-on bonus.

Where is Jason Knight now?

Just finishing a one-year tour in Kuwait with Naval Customs Battalion Bravo. The Navy called him up for short-term active-duty recall. He's now a second-class petty officer.

Stars & Stripes reports:
"He's better than the average Sailor at his job," said Bill Driver, the leading petty officer of Knight's 15-person customs crew in Kuwait. "It's not at all a strange situation. As open as he is now, it was under wraps for quite a while. It wasn't an issue at work."

Another Sailor with the detail, Petty Officer 1st Class Tisha Hanson, works in admin and has had to process discharges for homosexual Sailors before.

"I've obviously never heard of something like this happening before," she said of Knight's return to active duty. "But it doesn't bother me. The Navy tends to keep people who don't want to be here, but Jason does."

In Knight's case, he was given an honorable discharge when booted from the Navy on April 4, 2005. Though it's not widely known, a clause in the military's policy on discharging gays allows commanders discretion on what form of discharge to give a gay servicemember.
"Don't ask, don't tell." Don't bother.

1 comment:

Busplunge said...

Yeah, the sad thing is he had to give back his $13,000 re-enlistment bonus.