HRC Blog

Charleston WV Taking Action to Repeal DADT

 The following post comes from HRC Organizer Nick Veach: I arrived in Charleston, West Virginia last Wednesday evening ready to move forward in the campaign to repeal "Don’t Ask Don’t Tell" and gain additional support from West Virginians. I was joined by Veteran Organizer and West Virginia resident Pepe Johnson. The first stop on the campaign was in Charleston, West Virginia where we held a repeal event last Thursday at the Charleston Unitarian Universalist Congregation. Attendees started the event by signing postcards to send to Senator Robert Byrd, urging his support in repealing "Don’t Ask Don’t Tell" this year! A viewing of the PBS Documentary “Ask Not” was played, followed by a Q&A session lead by Army Veteran Pepe Johnson. Pepe spoke about his strong ties to West Virginia and his passion to repeal the discriminatory "Don’t Ask Don’t Tell" law. He detailed his accomplishments while serving in the United States Army and the ordeal of being discharged under DADT. The nearly fifty people in attendance asked numerous questions as Pepe engaged the audience with his stories, wit and humor. The Charleston Gazette was on hand to interview Pepe and report on the event here in West Virginia. The article and interview can be viewed here. By the end of the evening each audience member got out their cell phones and made personal phone calls to Senator Byrd’s DC Office, stating their support for repeal of "Don’t Ask Don’t Tell." Special thanks to the Unitarian Universalist Congregation, especially Pastor and military veteran Mel Hoover, for helping to host the event. To learn more about how you can help the campaign to repeal "Don’t Ask Don’t Tell" in West Virginia and across the United States, please visit our website at

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