An El Paso man says he was discharged from the Navy under “don’t ask don’t tell” because a commander found out he was gay when he sought treatment at a hospital after being drugged and raped at a gay nightclub in San Diego.
Jose Rodriguez, who was missing for three days when he was kidnapped and sexually assaulted by a group of men last June, says he woke up in a hotel room with no clothes. He doesn’t recall much about the incident:
“Me being forced down, held by my neck with a couple of hands holding me down and opening my mouth while I’m yelling, ‘Help,’” said Rodriguez.
Rodriguez sought medical treatment, and someone at the hospital later notified someone from the Navy about the incident. A Navy spokesman told a San Diego TV station that a sailor was “administratively punished” for violating Rodriguez’s medical rights by obtaining the information from the hospital.
Rodriguez, who’d been named the No. 1 sailor on his ship, says he suffered months of harassment from fellow sailors when they learned about the incident. Rodriguez has since been discharged and is now advocating for the repeal of DADT.
“It needs to be repealed because someone doesn’t need to hide who they are. Basically the government is asking us to lie and take our integrity away,” he told an El Paso TV station last week.
“Basically it’s not about having the lesbian gay community in the military; it’s about having the best specialists in a time of war,” he said.