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ACLU * ACLU * ACLU * ACLU * ACLU * ACLU * ACLU * ACLU * ACLU NEWS RELEASE * NEWS RELEASE * NEWS RELEASE * NEWS RELEASE ACLU Calls Military Policy Patently Unconstitutional; Lawsuit Challenges Violation of Equal Protection Clause For IMMEDIATE RELEASE July 27, 1993 WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Following is a statement by William B. Rubenstein, Director of the American Civil Liberties Union's national Lesbian and Gay Rights Project. "The ACLU is joining with Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund in filing this lawsuit today because the Defense Department policy denies equality to lesbian and gay service members while serving no legitimate government interest. It sacrifices our equal rights solely on the grounds of protecting the perceived prejudices of others. The American Civil Liberties Union will challenge any policy, from any source, that discriminates against lesbians and gay men. "We bring this case to safeguard the principle of equal protection under the law for all Americans. The central promise of our Constitution is that American citizens should be judged according to their abilities -- not their skin color, gender or sexual orientation. Gay and lesbian service members who have serve their country with distinction nevertheless risk investigation, persecution and discharge for activities other service members may engage in without risk. We seek one simple remedy through our lawsuit -- to force the military to judge gay people on their abilities and performance alone. "As long as the military continues to judge us according to the supposed prejudices of others, gay and lesbian Americans will continue to fight for equality -- in Congress, in the courts and in the streets. --endit-- ============================================================= ACLU Free Reading Room | A publications and information resource of the gopher://aclu.org:6601 | American Civil Liberties Union National Office ftp://aclu.org | mailto:infoaclu@aclu.org | "Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty"

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