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Sun Jun 16, 2019, 04:21 PM

Executive Order 10450

Executive Order 10450

Executive Order number: 10450
Signed by: Dwight D. Eisenhower on 27 April 1953

Expanded the security criteria for government jobs
Made heads of departments and agencies responsible for review of personnel and applicant backgrounds
Added several reasons for job termination, including sexual orientation
Mandated re-appraisal of previously-reviewed background checks.

President Dwight D. Eisenhower issued Executive Order 10450 on April 27, 1953. Effective May 27, 1953, it revoked President Truman's Executive Order 9835 of 1947, and dismantled its Loyalty Review Board program. Instead it charged the heads of federal agencies and the Office of Personnel Management, supported by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), with investigating federal employees to determine whether they posed security risks. It expanded the definitions and conditions used to make such determinations.

Comparison to the previous E.O. 9835

Previously, the criteria used to define a security risk were largely political, that is, affiliation with suspect organizations or a clear demonstration of disloyalty. Executive Order 10450 added more general estimations of character, stability, and reliability. Its language was broad: "Any criminal, infamous, dishonest, immoral, or notoriously disgraceful conduct, habitual use of intoxicants to excess, drug addiction, or sexual perversion." At the same time, the executive order's provisions contained advice on evaluating character problems, as in its provision that the medical valuation of a psychological problem should show "due regard to the transient or continuing effect of the illness."

The ban on lesbian and gay federal workers

Astronomer Frank Kameny (pictured in 2010) was fired from his government job in 1957 for being gay. He would later sue the government in a case that went to the US Supreme court and would found the gay rights Mattachine Society.

Under the order thousands of lesbian and gay applicants were barred from federal employment and over 5,000 federal employees were fired under suspicions of being homosexual. It came as a part of the US "Lavender Scare" witch hunts which contributed to and complemented the McCarthyist Red Scare. From 1947 to 1961 the number of firings based on sexual orientation were far greater than those for membership in the Communist party. It was not until 1973 that a federal judge ruled that a person's sexual orientation alone could not be the sole reason for termination from federal employment, and not until 1975 that the United States Civil Service Commission announced that they would consider applications by gays and lesbians on a case by case basis.

Without explicitly referring to homosexuality, the executive order responded to several years of charges that the presence of homosexual employees in the State Department posed blackmail risks. Attorney General Herbert Brownell Jr. explained that the new order was designed to encompass both loyalty and security risks and he differentiated between the two: "Employees could be a security risk and still not be disloyal or have any traitorous thoughts, but it may be that their personal habits are such that they might be subject to blackmail by people who seek to destroy the safety of our country." The executive order had the effect of banning gay men and lesbians from working for any agency of the federal government.

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Reply Executive Order 10450 (Original post)
mahatmakanejeeves Jun 2019 OP
customerserviceguy Jun 2019 #1

Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Sun Jun 16, 2019, 08:21 PM

1. The influence of traditional religion

made its presence known in many ways during that time. It was during the Eisenhower era that we added, "under God" to the Pledge of Allegience, and "In God We Trust" on our money. Being scared of being nuked by the Russians caused a lot of un-American behavior. The irony is, we had a House committee on un-American activities that was controlled by monsters.

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