·Both Houses of U.S. Legislature Vote to Remove Homosexual Conduct as a Grounds for Discharging Troops
·New Senate Bill to Repeal DADT Passes in the Waning Days of Lame-Duck Session
Event:The United States Senate passed a bill repealing the military’s policy of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” concerning the sexual activity of its servicemembers.An identical bill was passed earlier in the week by the House of Representatives, and now goes to the President for signature.
Status:A repeal of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) military policy will prohibit the armed forces from discharging servicemembers on the grounds that they publicly identify as homosexuals.The bill calls for a 60-day waiting period after the President, Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff have made an official statement that they believe the repeal will not adversely affect military preparedness.
Analysis:In a December 2010 correspondence, we strongly urged U.S. Senators to reject the proposed repeal of DADT.We argued that homosexual conduct is inherently destructive, and the military’s ethical code discouraging such conduct was reasonable and proper.
Entirely absent from the news reports of public statements made by Senators, the President and the advocates for the repeal were any explanation of how this radical shift from the status quo would not in fact impact the defining issues of “military readiness, military effectiveness, unit cohesion, and recruiting and retention of the Armed Forces.”
Instead, politicians and gay-rights spokespeople focused entirely on what they characterized as an injustice, that is, hurting the feelings of homosexual servicemembers by not allowing them to tell others about their love lives.But a vast number of Americans frankly don’t want to hear about their neighbors’ love lives.
The key argument of the DADT repeal advocates has been to invoke “discrimination,” equating the moral objections against homosexual conduct with irrational bigotry, such as racism.What is the difference between racism and bigotry, on the one hand, and what is called sexual morality, on the other?
Last century, black soldiers fought against being treated differently than their fellows and argued that they should not be singled out to serve in separate divisions.But gay advocacy groups are doing just the opposite.They insist on the right to express their uniqueness and difference from everyone else.As a practical consequence, “openly gay” soldiers may require the military to sequester them into their own separate units.
Making distinctions based on people’s sexual appetites in no way resembles making distinctions based on race, ethnicity or religion.The military’s ability to work effectively depends on its ability to work as a coordinated whole.Individuals must mold together as a group.Skin color, national origin, and religion do not put one solider at odds with working cooperatively with others as a team.
But one who publicly tells others that he desires sexual relations with other men undermines the shared group dynamics required by a military unit.
The most basic human experience testifies to the fact that sexual desire is inherently an exclusive, personalized, special intimate union.Looking at another man as a potential sexual partner is antithetical to externally-directed bonds of brotherhood, selflessness and a focus on the greater good.Sexuality aggrandizes our individuality; a military team requires us to surrender that individuality.
To bring an example from sports, a football team cannot be victorious if two of its players desire to play catch with each other instead of subordinating themselves to function only as members of the team.
The United States works hard to protect everyone from undue pain, shame and social stigma.The protections of the current DADT policy reflect this noble mission.By not sanctioning intrusive inspection into their personal lives, DADT strikes a fair and reasonable balance between allowing soldiers to feel comfortable with their own personal feelings, while still respecting the social, emotional and cooperative demands of a military unit that must work as a team.
Our nation’s protection does not rest on its military, but rather on the worthiness of our deeds, through which G-d Almighty judges us.Governments topple, economies collapse and nations fall when their citizens allow themselves to stray from upholding the standards of a decent society.
Ingrained in human nature as a universal barometer of worth is the integrity of people’s intimate relationships.Promiscuousconduct, taking other men’s wives, incest, bestiality and homosexual behavior all destroy a person’s noble potential and corrupt society along with him.
Impact:While President Barack Obama has been vocal in his support of the repeal, several procedural steps remain before the DADT policy is actually lifted.The details of how the new military policy will take effect has yet to be made clear.
True to form, gay-friendly advocacy groups, politicians and newspaper columnists have hailed the vote as a historic bellwether and the dawn of a new era for homosexuals.We question the degree of parallax between true mainstream attitudes and media and lobbyist propaganda, and remain skeptical about reading this vote as anything more than the last show of strength by a Democratic party headed into steep decline in power.
The votes of these 65 senators in the last days of this Congress, along with the votes of the outgoing House that is about to change over to Republican control, might not quite erase the will of millions of voters just over a month ago who swept conservative candidates to power.
The votes of 8 Republicans in the Senate and 15 Republicans in the House in favor of the DADT repeal should confirm that a conservative party affiliation alone is no longer an indicator of fidelity to traditional morality.An opportunity for voices of middle to right leaning Democrats may emerge as early as next term.
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