September 27, 2006
To help fill the need in the armed forces, the military is loosening some of its requirements for joining. It's part of an effort to recruit 80,000 soldiers this year.
Even so, the military will not allow gays and lesbians who are open about their sexual orientation to enlist.
Almost a dozen students held a sit-in in front of the recruitment office in Charlottesville.
The demonstrators say two of them, who are openly gay, tried a month ago to enlist and were rejected.
Some military analysts say 'don't ask don't tell' should remain in place, even though the army is waiving other things, like it's high school diploma requirement, and the age cap--which was lifted from 35 to 42. A waiver may also be allowed for admitted drug use or misdemeanor convictions.