[UPDATED:] Lt. Dan Choi of Tustin Arrested for "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" Stunt at White House
UPDATE: Details released for protest in Irvine in support of Lt. Dan Choi and other activists (see below) . . .
Clockwork is no expert on military jurisprudence, so does anyone know if getting arrested for chaining oneself to a White House gate--while in uniform, mind you--makes one just as likely to get bounced from the service as, say, "telling" in violation of the "don't ask, don't tell" policy?
Lt. Dan Choi, who is originally from Tustin, may know the answer.
Choi, who was just called back to active duty with his Army National Guard unit in upstate New York last month, and Capt. Jim Pietrangelo were arrested at the White House gates Thursday for their very public protest of "don't ask, don't tell."
It happened after a Human Rights Campaign rally aimed at repealing the controversial policy at Freedom Plaza in Washington, D.C.
Choi, who was not scheduled to attend the rally, showed up at the last minute and asked to be added to the program, reports The Advocate.
"You've been told that the White House has a plan," Choi told rally attendees. "But we learned this week that the president is still not fully committed. . . . Following this rally, I will be leading [the protest] to the White House to say 'enough talk.' . . . I am still standing, I am still fighting, I am still speaking out, and I am still gay."
Choi, whose discharge under don't ask, don't tell is pending, and Pietrangelo, who has already been discharged under the ban, then led about 100 protesters to the White House, where the two were handcuffed to the gates by gay activist Robin McGehee.
Police then blocked the White House entrance, put yellow police tape around the area where protest was staged and arrested Choi, Pietrangelo and McGehee.
The men were taken to the U.S. Park Police's Anacostia station, where they were charged with failure to obey a lawful order, and then held overnight at the D.C. Central Cell Block. They were scheduled to appear today in D.C. Superior Court.
McGehee was arrested for helping to handcuff the servicemen. She was released Thursday evening.
Rallies in support of Choi and Pietrangelo were scheduled to go off just about now in Orlando, Florida, and in front of the Times Square Military Recruitment Office in New York.
UPDATE: A Facebook page announces there will be a protest "as the sun sets in honor of the activists who just took tremendous risks for our rights." It's scheduled for 6-7:30 tonight at the footbridge along Campus Drive between West and East Peltason on the campus of UC Irvine, above the Army recruiting center.