Marines Gen. James Amos: Gays will cost limbs and lives

Tue. December 14, 2010 11:37 PM by News Staff

Washington, D.C. - The gay group Servicemembers Legal Defense Network is calling for the man in charge of the Marines to resign after he said openly gay Marines could cost servicemembers their limbs or lives.

"Mistakes and inattention or distractions costs Marines lives," Gen. James Amos said. "I take that very seriously. I don't want to lose any Marines to the distraction. I don't want to have any Marines that I'm visiting at Bethesda [Naval Hospital], with no legs be the result of any type of distraction."

Amos is visiting Bethesda on Wednesday.

A recent Defense Department survey found that of all the branches of the military, Marines were the least likely to think that allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly would have a "positive, neutral or no effect." Fifty-eight percent believed that gay comrades would inhibit their ability to "get the job done," while 48 percent of those serving in the Army agreed with that statement.

Amos said his Marines are busy and they don't need changes right now.

"I don't need a staff study," Amos said. "I don't need to hire three PhDs to tell me what to interpret it. I've got Marines that came back to me as their commandant and said, we have concerns. So if they have concerns, I do, too. It's as simple as that."