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Don’t ask, don’t tell repealed by Senate.

After 17 years of prejudice against openly gay men and women in the US military, the don’t ask, don’t tell rule has officially been repealed by the US senate. The rule was judged illegal and unconstitutional a few months back by a US judge, but that ruling was overruled while the Pentagon decided what impact on fighting effectiveness having openly gay soldiers would have. And the result, little to no effect on fighting effectiveness, why would it? There are already gay men and women in the armed forces and that didn’t have an effect. Seriously it’s only homophobic attitudes that kept this rule in place for 17 years; a person shouldn’t have to live a lie to fight for their country. Hopefully this ruling will be final, no more appeals and over-rulings of the senate decision. Gay men and woman are just as capable of defending their country as heterosexual men and women, commonsense has prevailed, if certain people within the military don’t like it, the homophobes should be show the exit, plain and simple, prejudice like this has no place in the modern military, it’s about time the attitudes caught up with the 21st century technology.

What happened to the English batsmen that were making centuries and double centuries in the last two Ashes test matches? They certainly didn’t turn up for the third test, England’s batsmen has been piss-poor. I thought that Australia were poor with the bat being bowled out in their first innings for 268. At the end of day one, I was thinking that England were ready to make sure that the Ashes remain in English hands with England 29 for no loss. But for English fans that hope was short lived as the batsmen performed like a pack of dominoes slumping to 186 all out giving the Aussies a 82 runs first innings lead on day two. Australia finished day two 119 runs for 3 wickets with a lead of 201 over the tourists. Australia were eventually bowled out for 309 with Hussey making another century to set England a run chase of 391 to win. England came out to bat with high hopes, over two days and 10 wickets intact but England’s plan went out the window finishing day three with five wickets down and only 81 runs on the board. Trott was the highest scorer of the top order batsmen which isn’t saying much as he was caught with just 31 runs on the board. Pietersen went through the trouble of calling for another bat then immediately got himself out with that bat with a big edge to slip on just three runs. I have no idea why he played that shot the delivery was well wide, poor play from the Adelaide double centurion and KP knows it. What made the England batsmen’s performance even worse in that the wickets of Trott and Collingwood fell in the dying moments of the day. So we now have an inevitable situation where it’s only a matter of time before Australia clean up the remaining five English wickets to level the series and keep their chances of winning the Ashes alive. I know that the batsmen can’t always make double hundreds but for the whole team to fail dismally at the same time, that’s completely unacceptable. But for Australia whatever was said or done between the second and third tests seems to have worked. The Aussies looked like a dejected team at the end of the second test and now their tails are up and this win (should it happen) could inspire them on to win the Ashes. England need to bounce back immediately if they hope to retain the Ashes, time to regroup and come out fighting in the fourth test. If Australia get a head of steam, England could be in trouble! Yes England could still win this test match but let’s be realistic, only one recognised batsmen remaining and a bunch of bowlers, given how Australia have bowled, can you seriously see England making 300 runs to win this test match? I certainly don’t see it happening!

Update [19/12/10 17:15]: England were dismissed within 50 minutes on day four to fall to a crushing 267 run defeat, the Englishmen were bowled out for 123. “Now is not the time to panic” says Strauss, I’m afraid that it might well be time to panic as the next two tests are likely to have the same lively wicket which the English batsmen failed to deal with! Not a single English player managed to get past 31 runs in the second innings, a far cry from the centurions and double centurions of the first two test matches! England have been brought down to Earth with a bump!

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