I was in the Air Force in 1987 when U2’s Joshua Tree came out. I was totally in love with a Lt. Col in the Army I had met recently…..and little did I know how much my world would come crashing down…..and the two of us would be fighting on the front lines of homophobia in the military. I flew out to Ft. Benning in the summer of 1987. It was the first time I ever felt so strong about another man, especially a man who was 20 years older than me at the time. Prior to being under investigation, I had this belief system that everything was just and that everything was somehow going to be ok. I use to listen to “With or Without You” a lot……..The Joshua Tree was and still is, an important part of my life soundtrack. It was during those times I discovered how to love and care for another person…..transcending what rules the military and society laid down. I discovered that freedom to be who you are can be a threat to other people who fail to understand, who fail to empathize with others……. Looking back at being under investigation for being gay while in the military, I wouldn’t change a thing. I found that solider inside myself and stood strong and resilient while being forced by the USAF Commander to testify against Lt. Col Viney at Ft. Benning. During the court proceedings, every question the prosecuting attorney asked me I met with a ” I cannot recall.” After being subjected to late night interrogations, having all of my friends on base, who had no clue of my gayness, get called in to answer stupid questions asked by the USAF OSI. Fortunately after that ordeal…..it was very clear who were my real friends were…….and those who weren’t. It hurt me deeply…..the system wanted me to feel like a piece of shit for being gay……but you know what…….armed with the strength I have always found in music, they couldn’t break my spirit. Whenever I felt like I was going to lose it…..listening to “Where the Streets Have No Name” really provided me with a a positive mental picture deep in my soul that no one could pry away from me.