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Out in the military: One year without ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’

One year without DADT

On Sept. 20, the United States military will mark the one-year anniversary of the official repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the 1993 law that barred gays and lesbians from openly serving in the armed services. As the milestone nears, gay military members are thrilled to be able to be out, but note that inequities remain.

“During DADT, I did not ever hang out with other gays or even act on doing anything in fear of being caught so I waited until it was repealed to come out,” said Joshua Gravett, a gay Georgia native and sergeant in the U.S. Army currently stationed in Afghanistan.

Before repeal, Gravett — who enlisted at age 17 — planned to leave the Army. Now, he is considering completing the 20-year military career that would allow him to retire from the service at age 37.

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Soldiers in Afghanistan say ‘It Gets Better’

Soldiers in Afghanistan say 'It Gets Better'

A group of soldiers serving in Afghanistan are lending their voices to the “It Gets Better” project, a viral movement meant to reach out to bullied queer youth.

“It's hard being different when you're young and even when you're old. But once you realize that you have friends that are going to accept you for who you are, and the sooner the accept yourself for who you are, the sooner you'll realize that life gets better,” one female soldier says in the video.

A year ago, these soldiers could have been discharged under the military's “Don't Ask, Don't Tell” policy. The discriminatory law was officially overturned on Sept. 20, 2011. Some 13,000 soldiers were discharged due to their sexual orientation or perceived sexual orientation before the law was repealed.

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Occupy Atlanta moves in with lesbian couple facing foreclosure

Occupy Atlanta protesters in Woodruff Park

Activists with Atlanta's Occupy movement will occupy the Riverdale home of Brigitte Walker and her partner, Ajai Craig, the group announced this week.

Walker, an Iraq War veteran, is on 90 percent disability stemming from injuries she sustained while serving in the military and is facing foreclosure from her mortgage holder. Organizers say that her fixed income, along with her bank's refusal to negotiate new terms, have put her home “deep into the foreclosure process.”

Occupy Atlanta will host a press conference at Walker and Craig's home later today, organizers said.