Você está na página 1de 2


ATTORNEY AT L AW 1400 WEST ABRAM STREET ARLI NGTON, TEX AS 7601 3 OFFICE 817-2 61-2222 direct 817-27 6.4944



November 11, 2012 General Josue Robles, CEO USAA 9800 Fredericksburg Road San Antonio, Texas 78288 Dear General Robles: I doubt this letter will reach your desk, but perhaps I'm writing as much for me as you. It's Veterans Day and I am one. I was a combat infantry officer in Vietnam, having gone though jump school and OCS at Fort Benning. I am a policy holder and I am gay. For too long I have watched as LGBT youth or perceived to be LGBT youth have hung themselves, shot themselves, or jumped off bridges because their preachers, politicians, parents, teachers and fellow students repeatedly told them they were an abomination, perverted and worthless. What has this to do with USAA? When I was in the Army, I was taught to lead by example. It's time USAA did so by changing its policies and procedures to acknowledge, provide for and protect those LGBT policyholders and employees. These changes that USAA, just like American Airlines and others, make will send a clear message, one more counterbalance against the negative messages being sent by those mentioned above. The repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" is and will be successful because the military leaders have publically and forcefully embraced it. So too, it's time for USAA to take a public stand for equality for all. If the trial on Prop 8 taught us anything, it was that there is absolutely no factual or legal basis to deny me the same rights as others. So often I hear that the granting of marital rights and the benefits emanating there from will lead to the destruction of the foundation of our country: marriage between a man and a woman. However, the divorce rate hovers around 50% so one way to protect that "foundation" would be to outlaw divorce. Stop for a moment and think. If there were such a prohibition, how many couples would choose not to get married? While this country does not encourage divorce, over time, it has made it much easier. People change, situations change and no-fault divorce is simply an acknowledgment of these inescapable facts.

General Josue Robles

November 11, 2012

There are approximately 312 million people in the United States and 12% of those are living in long term, committed, heterosexual relationships. That's approximately 37 million people. The LGBT community represents about five percent (5%) of the population or 15.6 million people. But not all are going to get married. Therefore, if there is any threat to the "traditional" marriage, it's from committed unmarried heterosexuals, so perhaps that arrangement should be illegal. The realty is that states have long acknowledged such a relationship by enacting statutes creating common law marriage. I think you get my point. Duty, Honor, Country, and the image of General MacArthur standing before the West Point Cadets. If he gave that speech today, there would be gay cadets in his audience. Do you think his words would not apply to them? There are and always have been gays in the military. They have served, sacrificed and, in some cases, died for our country. Unlike most Americans, they have paid the price for equality and neither USAA nor anyone should deny them those rights. The words General MacArthur spoke that May day in 1962 ring true today: "Duty", "Honor", "Country" - those three hallowed words reverently dictate what you ought to be, what you can be, what you will be. They are your rallying points to build courage when courage seems to fail, to regain faith when there seems to be little cause for faith, to create hope when hope become forlorn. So it's time for you and USAA to change, to set an example, to create hope. The choice is yours. What will you do? Respectfully,

1LT Jonathan D.F. Nelson JDFN/kaf