EssoEssex OP t1_isrojpl wrote

>The change applies to survivors who -- because of bans before a Supreme Court ruling that year making gay marriage a constitutional right -- weren't wed long enough before their spouse died to qualify for benefits under the previous policy.
>"VA is closing a gap in benefits for surviving spouses of LGBTQ+ veterans, righting a wrong that is a legacy of the discriminatory federal ban on same-sex marriages," VA Secretary Denis McDonough said in a statement Oct. 13. "It is VA's mission to serve all veterans -- including LGTBQ+ veterans -- as well as they've served our country, and this decision is a key part of that effort."

Between 1993 and 2011, an estimated 14,000 U.S. troops were discharged other-than-honorably because of sexual orientation; just imagine all the gay soldiers that made it through without getting outed. Post-Don't Ask Don't Tell, we know it's roughly 6% of the whole military, and probably was before it, too. In between 2001 and 2011, over 7,000 U.S. soldiers died in Iraq and Afghanistan. Six percent of that is at least four hundred; and it's great their service is being recognized.