Gen. Keith Kerr: A “Real” General?

Right-wing talk shows and forums are lighting up with accusations the Brigadier General Keith Kerr is not a “real” general because that rank was attained with the California State Military Reserve, not the federal armed forces.

Kerr, the openly gay retired soldier whose question during the Republican YouTube debate launched accusations that he’d been planted by the Clinton campaign (with CNN’s help), retired from the U.S. Army Reserve with the rank of Colonel in 1986 then joined the CMSR where he was appointed Brigadier General in 1991, a rank that is considered by some to a be an honorarium similar to doctoral degrees universities grant to certain luminaries. It appears the highest rank Kerr achieved in the active federal military was Lieutenant.

Blowhard radio rightie Michael Savage attacked Kerr on his show earlier this week, calling Kerr a “phony” and saying, “I don’t care about this old queen, frankly. He disgusts me to make — my flesh crawls from the old queen. That was a general? Now you wonder why we’re still in Iraq five years later. General — with General Keith Kerr, you know why we’re still in Iraq five years later. That’s all. He wasn’t just racking up cue balls at the pool table.”

Surprising support for Kerr can be found on Stop The ACLU, which says, “Now, here is the thing folks. Kerr is rightfully called a general despite that his official Federal rank was never higher than a Colonel. It is true that he was not a General in the U.S. Army, it is true that his rank of general is only a State rank, and it might be true that he cannot officially wear his state rank of general outside the state of California. But, again, he is still a general.”