LGBT+ veterans memorial in Washington

James Patrick Carraghan

James Patrick Carraghan is an award-winning activist, writer, librarian and student at Kutztown University in Pennsylvania. He spends his free time gardening, hording books and flirting. You can follow him on tumblr at http://thelibrarynevercloses.tumblr.com/

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Plans for a new national monument saluting American LGBT+ veterans have recently been made public. The digital rendering of the monument shows three black pillars, 11 feet (3.35 meters) high, placed in a circle. From above, the pillars will look like a triangle—a reference to the pink triangle. The seals for all six of the branches of the American military (Army, Navy, Merchant Marines, Marines, Air Force and Coast Guard) adorn the pillars. An American flag stands at the centre between the pillars.

In a statement released by the LGBT Veterans Memorial Project, the group commented: ‘The monument is simple yet stately and will stand proudly on its site just as those it represents served this country with pride.’

There is currently an on-going fundraising effort to raise an additional $500,000 to build the monument in D.C.’s Historic Congressional Cemetery, with a goal of holding a dedication ceremony on Memorial Day, 2015.

The American military has always had a somewhat uneasy relationship with its LGBT+ veterans and active duty members. The monument comes a few years after the repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’ a policy enacted by President Bill Clinton in 1994 which prohibited discrimination against gay, lesbian and bisexual individuals in the American military, but which denied them the right of serving openly.

Those who wish to contribute to the fund for the monument may visit The National LGBT Veterans Memorial website.

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