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Thread: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

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    Default Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    By James J. Lindsay, Jerome Johnson, E.G. "Buck" Shuler Jr. and Joseph J. Went

    Wednesday, April 15, 2009; A19

    With the nation engaged in two wars and facing a number of potential adversaries, this is no time to weaken our military. Yet if gay rights activists and their allies have their way, grave harm will soon be inflicted on our all-volunteer force.

    The administration and some in Congress have pledged to repeal Section 654 of U.S. Code Title 10, which states that homosexuals are not eligible for military service. Often confused with the "don't ask, don't tell" regulations issued by President Bill Clinton, this statute establishes several reasons that homosexuality is incompatible with military service.

    Section 654 recognizes that the military is a "specialized society" that is "fundamentally different from civilian life." It requires a unique code of personal conduct and demands "extraordinary sacrifices, including the ultimate sacrifice, in order to provide for the common defense." The law appreciates military personnel who, unlike civilians who go home after work, must accept living conditions that are often "characterized by forced intimacy with little or no privacy."

    While there have been changes in civilian society since this statute was adopted by wide bipartisan majorities in 1993, the military realities it describes abide. If anything, they are more acute in wartime.

    In our experience, and that of more than 1,000 retired flag and general officers who have joined us in signing an open letter to President Obama and Congress, repeal of this law would prompt many dedicated people to leave the military. Polling by Military Times of its active-duty subscribers over the past four years indicates that 58 percent have consistently opposed repeal. In its most recent survey, 10 percent said they would not reenlist if that happened, and 14 percent said they would consider leaving.

    If just the lesser number left the military, our active-duty, reserve and National Guard forces would lose 228,600 people -- more than the total of today's active-duty Marine Corps. Losses of even a few thousand sergeants, petty officers and experienced mid-grade officers, when we are trying to expand the Army and Marine Corps, could be crippling.

    And the damage would not stop there. Legislation introduced to repeal Section 654 (H.R. 1283) would impose on commanders a radical policy that mandates "nondiscrimination" against "homosexuality, or bisexuality, whether the orientation is real or perceived." Mandatory training classes and judicial proceedings would consume valuable time defining that language. Team cohesion and concentration on missions would suffer if our troops had to live in close quarters with others who could be sexually attracted to them.

    We don't need a study commission to know that tensions are inevitable in conditions offering little or no privacy, increasing the stress of daily military life. "Zero tolerance" of dissent would become official intolerance of anyone who disagrees with this policy, forcing additional thousands to leave the service by denying them promotions or punishing them in other ways. Many more will be dissuaded from ever enlisting. There is no compelling national security reason for running these risks to our armed forces. Discharges for homosexual conduct have been few compared with separations for other reasons, such as pregnancy/family hardship or weight-standard violations.

    There are better ways to remedy shortages in some military specialties than imposing social policies that would escalate losses of experienced personnel who are not easily replaced.

    Some suggest that the United States must emulate Denmark, the Netherlands and Canada, which have incorporated homosexuals into their forces. But none of these countries has the institutional culture or worldwide responsibilities of our military. America's armed forces are models for our allies' militaries and the envy of our adversaries -- not the other way around.

    As former senior commanders, we know that the reason for this long-standing envy is the unsurpassed discipline, morale and readiness of our military. The burden should be on proponents of repeal to demonstrate how their initiative would improve these qualities of our armed services. This they cannot do.

    Consequently, our recent open letter advised America's elected leaders: "We believe that imposing this burden on our men and women in uniform would undermine recruiting and retention, impact leadership at all echelons, have adverse effects on the willingness of parents who lend their sons and daughters to military service, and eventually break the All-Volunteer Force."

    Everyone can serve America in some way, but there is no constitutional right to serve in the military. The issue is not one of individual desires, or of the norms and mores of civilian society. Rather, the question is one of national security and the discipline, morale, readiness and culture of the U.S. armed forces upon which that security depends. It is a question we cannot afford to answer in a way that breaks our military.

    Retired Army Gen. James J. Lindsay was the first commander of U.S. Special Operations Command. Retired Adm. Jerome Johnson was vice chief of naval operations. Retired Lt. Gen. E.G. "Buck" Shuler Jr. was commander of the Strategic Air Command's 8th Air Force. Retired Gen. Joseph J. Went was assistant commandant of the Marine Corps. They are founding members of Flag and General Officers for the Military.

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    April 16, 2009 -- Updated 1948 GMT (0348 HKT)
    Commentary: Allow gays to serve openly in military

    By Nathaniel Frank
    Special to CNN

    Editor's note: Nathaniel Frank is author of "Unfriendly Fire: How the Gay Ban Undermines the Military and Weakens America" and is senior research fellow at the Palm Center, a think tank at the University of California, Santa Barbara, that has focused on gender, sexuality and the military. He also teaches on the adjunct faculty at New York University.



    Nathaniel Frank says there's no evidence that letting gays serve openly would harm the military.

    (CNN) -- This week, four senior retired officers wrote an op-ed in The Washington Post predicting "grave harm" to the military if President Obama moves forward with his vow to let gays serve openly.

    "Our experience," they wrote, "and that of more than 1,000 retired flag and general officers," suggest that lifting the ban would harm unit cohesion, recruitment and retention, and would ultimately "break the All-Volunteer Force."

    The argument is an old one, and was an effective canard in defeating President Clinton's move to lift the ban in 1993. But it has never been rooted in fact or evidence, and the effort of these officers to defeat equal treatment this time around will face mountains of opposing data and a dramatically changed cultural landscape.

    The officers who oppose openly gay service do not base their arguments on any new information. In addition to their own experience -- an impressive credential that's nevertheless too vague to hang an argument on -- the officers rely on a single poll.

    They cite an unscientific survey -- it does not draw from a representative sampling but from newspaper subscribers -- indicating that 58 percent of the military oppose lifting the ban and that, if it's lifted, 24 percent claim they will leave or consider leaving after their tour ends.
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    But it's naïve at best, and disingenuous at worst, to confuse this opinion survey with a sound prediction of actual behavior. When both Britain and Canada proposed lifting their gay bans in the 1990s, similar opinion surveys found much higher numbers -- about two-thirds in both cases -- claiming they, too, would leave. In each case, no more than three departures were attributed to the policy change. Three.

    In fact, the evidence showing that openly gay service works is overwhelming. Since 1957, when the U.S. military began doing its own studies on gays in the military, every last bit of research has shown that openly gay service works.

    Studies of foreign militaries include a 1993 Government Accountability Office study of allied nations that found that "the presence of homosexuals in the military is not an issue and has not created problems in the functioning of military units"; a 1994 assessment by the U.S. Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences finding that predicted negative consequences of ending gay exclusion in the Canadian Forces never materialized; the 2000 assessment of the British Ministry of Defense, calling its new policy of equal treatment "a solid achievement" with "no discernible impact" on recruitment or other critical variables; and four academic studies conducted by the Palm Center, where I work, finding that lifting bans in Britain, Israel, Canada and Australia had no negative impact on military readiness, including on recruitment and retention.

    The officers writing in The Washington Post question the relevance of foreign militaries to this debate, mocking the idea that the U.S. military "must emulate Denmark, the Netherlands and Canada." But they failed to note that 24 of our closest allies let gays serve openly, including Britain, whose combat-tested soldiers and sailors serve shoulder to shoulder with U.S. forces.

    While our military and culture are unique in the world, it's an astonishing vote of no-confidence in American troops to say that they are not capable of doing what 24 other militaries have done successfully. Ours is a professional, disciplined fighting force, and the assertion that a diverse military would lack order and discipline is, as Rep. Patrick Murphy, an Iraq War veteran, has said, "an insult" to him and the entire U.S. military.

    But it's not just foreign militaries that provide real evidence on gay service.

    A majority of U.S. troops know of, or suspect, gays in their units, giving the lie to the most basic assumption underlying the gay ban: that openly gay service could never work.

    After all, gays are already serving, and serving openly, without causing problems. Yet despite the law's failure to keep many open gays out, the ban's persistence means that gay troops are subject to random dismissals and are often unable to access military support services for fear of being found out and fired.

    Even extensive research by our own military has concluded the gay ban is unnecessary, including a large 1993 study by the RAND Corporation -- a think tank created by the military itself -- and two official military studies -- a 1989 study by the Defense Personnel Security Research Center and the Navy's 1957 Crittenden report -- which all found sexual orientation is irrelevant to military performance.

    Indeed, neither the military nor anyone else has ever turned up a shred of evidence tying openly gay service to impairment of the military.

    When the officers' claims are pitted against the wealth of actual facts and research on this issue, they are shown for what they really are: fear and intolerance, rooted in a world that's largely disappeared. Indeed, the vast majority of these retired officers, including the authors of this week's op-ed, retired before the current "don't ask, don't tell" policy even began in 1994.

    Their military is not the same as today's, where three-quarters of troops are "personally comfortable" with gays and lesbians, and "don't ask, don't tell" is considered "a joke."

    These officers attribute current efforts to lift the ban to "gay rights activists," when in fact, according to consistent polling, four-fifths of the American public favors repeal, including majorities of Republicans, conservatives and even churchgoers. It also includes many retired officers who did serve under, and used to support, the current policy, such as Gen. John Shalikashvili, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who sees the ban as a threat to military readiness.

    The officers say there is "no compelling national security reason" to accept the "risks" of lifting the ban, which they say include the likely loss of "experienced personnel who are not easily replaced." But under current policy, more than 800 "mission-critical specialists" have been fired just because they're gay, including more than 60 Arabic linguists.

    Due to the military's overall struggle to meet its recruiting goals, it has had to lower standards and admit convicted felons.

    Kicking out capable troops while replacing them with ex-convicts is not a recipe for good order and discipline. Forcing soldiers to lie to each other is not good for morale or cohesion.

    Drumming out Arabic linguists at a time when we don't have enough to translate what our enemies are saying is bad, not good, for national security. If these officers care more about our nation than about preserving an embalmed military culture, they'll cease and desist.

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Gates Treads Lightly On Gays In Military

    Defense Secretary Urges Caution On Potential Changes To "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" Policy

    Comments 177
    CARLISLE, Pa., April 16, 2009

    Defense Secretary Robert Gates points to the audience while speaking to the U.S. Army War College student body and faculty, Thursday, April 16, 2009, in the Bliss Hall Auditorium in Carlisle, Pa. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

    (CBS/AP) Defense Secretary Robert Gates is urging caution about potential changes to the U.S. military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy governing the openness of gay troops.

    Speaking at the Army War College, Gates stressed he is not yet taking a position about whether gay troops should be open about their sexuality. That could lead to their discharge under current policy dating to the Clinton administration.

    President Barack Obama committed during the 2008 presidential campaign to moving to end the policy. But Gates notes that it took five years for the U.S. armed forces to integrate during the Truman administration.

    Gates is touring war colleges this week, selling his plan to reorder the Pentagon budget. He wants to cancel some big programs and scale back others.

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    I like the reasoning they use; Because the reason for not wanting gays is old, it must be wrong.

    People know who are gay in the military now. They have the neatest footlocker and listen to Celine Dion.
    "Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
    -- Theodore Roosevelt


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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    "Preliminary" talks held on U.S. military gay policy

    Sun May 10, 2009 2:32pm EDT
    By Will Dunham

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Obama administration is holding "preliminary discussions" about changing the military's prohibition against openly gay service members, White House National Security Advisor James Jones said on Sunday.

    President Barack Obama pledged during the presidential campaign to change the policy. But the issue has been on the back-burner as the White House tackles other issues such as the economy and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    Jones said he does not know if the policy, known as "don't ask, don't tell," will be overturned, and indicated a cautious approach.

    "We have a lot on our plate right now. It has to be teed up at the right time ... to do this the right way," Jones said on the ABC program "This Week."

    Asked if the policy will be overturned, Jones said, "I don't know. ... The president has said that he is in favor of that. We'll just wait. We'll have to wait and see."
    The current policy does not allow the military to ask service members about their sexual orientation, but allows the military to expel people who make it known that they are gay.

    The policy was passed by Congress in 1993. It was fashioned as a compromise between those who wanted to preserve the previous outright prohibition on gays in the military and those who wanted to allow gays to serve.

    "We have had preliminary discussions with the leadership of the Pentagon, (Defense) Secretary (Robert) Gates, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs (Admiral Mike Mullen)," Jones said.

    "It will be discussed in the way the president does things, which is: be very deliberative, very thoughtful, seeking out all sides on the issue," added Jones, a retired general who previously served as commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps.

    Proponents of the prohibition on openly gay people serving in the military argue that allowing them in would harm the morale and "good order and discipline" in the armed forces.

    An openly gay Army officer this month released a hand-written letter she received from Obama in response to a letter she had written to him condemning the policy.

    Obama wrote, "It is because of outstanding Americans like you that I committed to changing our current policy. Although it will take some time to complete (partly because it needs congressional action) I intend to fulfill my commitment!"

    Jones did not indicate a time table for the administration's discussions on how to approach the issue.

    Senator John McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential nominee who served in the Navy during the Vietnam War, said on the same program, "In my view, and I know that a lot of people don't agree with that, the policy has been working and I think it's been working well."

    (Editing by Sandra Maler)

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    White House says it is reviewing gays policy

    By Philip Elliott - The Associated Press
    Posted : Thursday May 21, 2009 20:16:10 EDT

    WASHINGTON — The White House insisted Thursday that officials are working to overturn a policy that bans homosexuals from serving openly in the military, reacting to Pentagon assessments that such efforts were a low priority and to Democratic activists’ complaints of slow progress.

    White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told reporters that President Barack Obama is committed to reversing the Clinton-era policy of “don’t ask, don’t tell,” which blocks gays’ service if they should disclose their sexual orientation. Congress would have to take action to change the policy. Recent polls indicate the ban and the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy are losing support.

    “Try as one may, a president can’t simply whisk away standing law of the United States of America,” Gibbs said. “But if you’re going to change the policy, if it is the law of the land, you have to do it through an act of Congress.”

    The administration has drawn criticism from gay and lesbian activists for not moving quickly enough to repeal the policy. Democratic activists and fundraisers met last weekend in Texas to coordinate an online campaign known as the Dallas Principles to prod the president.

    “We face a historic opportunity to obtain our full civil rights; this is the moment for change,” the group said in a mission statement. “No delay. No excuses.”


    Opponents of the policy face problems, however.

    On Tuesday, Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell said the military has no plans to repeal the policy, and the White House had not asked for the 1993 policy to be scrapped.

    Two days later, Gibbs said Morrell had backed off that position; Morrell released a statement hours later doing just that.

    “President Obama has been clear in his direction to Secretary [Robert] Gates and [Joint Chiefs] Chairman [Mike] Mullen that he is committed to repeal the ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy. He has also been clear that he is committed to do it in a way that is least disruptive to our troops, especially given that they have been simultaneously waging two wars for six years now,” Morrell said.

    “Although this will require changes to the law, the secretary and chairman are working to address the challenges associated with implementation of the president’s commitment,” he said.

    Even so, retired Marine Gen. James Jones, the White House’s national security adviser, this month told ABC’s “This Week” that he was not sure the policy would be overturned.

    “We have a lot on our plate right now,” he said.

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    My own personal stance on working side-to-side with a gay/lesbian is this, to me it's a lot like trying to get a kid to eat something different. What sounds absolutely horrific at first turns out to be not so bad. That being said, I'm well aware not everyone shares my view, so it occurs to me that long term space missions might be just the place for gays to make their contribution. Everyone acknowledges sex is going to be a major issue in any long term mission, and it seems to me this would simplify things in the pioneering stage, as it would remove the contraception issue. Any thoughts?

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    June 29, 2009 5:46 PM
    Obama: I Am A Champion For Gay Americans



    President Obama, who has come under harsh criticism from gay rights advocates for not yet acting on many campaign promises on gay issues, Monday afternoon said that his administration has made some progress on behalf of gay Americans and plans to do more.

    "I know that many in this room don't believe that progress has come fast enough, and I understand that," Mr. Obama said at a reception for LGBT Pride Month at the White House. "It's not for me to tell you to be patient anymore than it was for others to counsel patience to African-Americans who were petitioning for equal rights a half-century ago."

    "But I say this: We have made progress," the president continued. "And we will make more. And I want you to know that I expect and hope to be judged not by words, not by promises I've made, but by the promises that my administration keeps."

    "We've been in office six months now," he said. "I suspect that by the time this administration is over, I think you guys will have pretty good feelings about the Obama administration."

    As a candidate, the president promised as a candidate to repeal the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy banning gays from serving openly in the military as well as the Defense Of Marriage Act. Gay rights advocates have grown increasingly impatient as his administration has made little progress on those or other issues important to them.

    "I believe preventing patriotic Americans from serving their country weakens our national security," the president said in reference to "don't ask, don't tell." He said the administration is working with the Pentagon and Congress to end the policy. He also insisted that doing so will require an act of Congress, though many believe the president could halt discharges of openly gay servicemembers through an executive order.



    "As commander-in-chief, in a time of war, I do have a responsibility to see that this change is administered in a practical and a way that takes over the long term," he said.

    The president said that prejudice against gay people endures and that some citizens "still hold fast to worn arguments and old attitudes, who fail to see your families like their families and who would deny you the rights that most Americans take for granted."

    "We seek an America in which no one feels the pain of discrimination based on who you are or who you love," he said.

    The president noted that he has signed a memorandum extending some federal benefits to LGBT families and is urging Congress to pass the Domestic Partners Benefits and Obligations Act, which would mean the extension of health care benefits.

    He also said his administration is working to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination bill and a hate crimes bill named after Matthew Shepard.

    "There are unjust laws to overturn and unfair practices to stop," the president said.

    First lady Michelle Obama was also present at the reception, which commemorated the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion in New York City, widely seen as the spark for the gay rights movement.

    "The riots at Stonewall gave way to protests, and protests gave way to a movement, and the movement gave way to a transformation that continues to this day," he said. "It continues when a partner fights for her right to sit at the hospital bedside of a woman she loves; it continues when a teenager is called a name for being different and says, 'So what if I am?'; it continues in your work and in your activism, in your fight to freely live your lives to the fullest."

    "We are all witnesses to monumental changes in this country," Mr. Obama concluded. "That should give us hope, but we cannot rest. We must continue to do our part to make progress step by step, law by law, mind by changing mind. And I want you to know that, in this task, I will not only be your friend; I will continue to be an ally and a champion and a president who fights with you and for you."

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Obama criticizes 'old attitudes' about homosexuality, says Americans will change

    Posted on Jun 30, 2009 | by Michael Foust

    WASHINGTON (BP)--President Obama became the first chief executive to host a White House ceremony celebrating "gay pride" Monday, telling several hundred homosexual guests in the East Room that America still has what he called "old attitudes" about homosexuality but that they have "an ally and a champion" in the Oval Office.

    The June 29 ceremony marked the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots -- which launched the modern-day "gay rights" movement -- and also Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Pride Month, which takes place each June and which was recognized by an Obama proclamation at the beginning of the month.

    Conservative commentators were quick to note that the White House ceremony came only a month and a half after Obama chose not to host -- as was a custom under the Bush administration -- a White House event commemorating the National Day of Prayer.

    Monday's event was historic; even though former President Clinton signed "Gay Pride Month" proclamations, he never hosted a White House ceremony celebrating it.

    During a 15-minute speech, Obama reiterated his opposition to the military's Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy as well as the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which gives states the option of not recognizing another state's "gay marriages." His line on DOMA drew perhaps the loudest applause.

    "I know that many in this room don't believe that progress has come fast enough, and I understand that," he said. "... But I say this: We have made progress and we will make more. And I want you to know that I expect and hope to be judged not by words, not by promises I've made, but by the promises that my administration keeps.... We've been in office six months now. I suspect that by the time this administration is over, I think you guys will have pretty good feelings about the Obama administration."

    Saying he "deeply appreciate[s]" their support -- exit polls showed he carried 70 percent of the national homosexual vote -- Obama said, "I want you to know that you have our support, as well."

    "There are unjust laws to overturn and unfair practices to stop," he said. "And though we've made progress, there are still fellow citizens, perhaps neighbors or even family members and loved ones, who still hold fast to worn arguments and old attitudes, who fail to see your families like their families, and who would deny you the rights that most Americans take for granted."

    Such language about "worn arguments" and "old attitudes" frustrated evangelicals, who say their views about the sinfulness of homosexuality are based on unchangeable biblical teachings. Bob Stith, the Southern Baptist national strategist for gender issues and representative of the denomination's Task Force on Ministry to Homosexuals (SBCTheWayOut.com), said evangelicals haven't "arrived at our conclusions on homosexuality lightly."

    "It isn't simply that we believe homosexuality is sin," Stith told Baptist Press. "We have wrestled with the texts, with the new apologetics of many activists and have come to a genuine, heartfelt belief that Scripture is clear on this."

    If "God says something is wrong," Stith said, then those who deviate from God's commands are missing "out on God's best" and are "in an adversarial relationship with God." Obama's words, Stith said, marginalizes not only evangelical Christians but also those homosexual persons who desire to change.

    "If God says something is wrong, He also provides a way out," Stith said. "If, as seems evident, Mr. Obama is intent on marginalizing or eradicating any who hold to traditional biblical convictions, then he also eliminates the hope of many who struggle with same-sex attractions and want to be free from that struggle. It is tragic to think of the thousands of young men and women who will opt for a moral choice without having the opportunity to hear all the options. This is neither compassionate, tolerant nor an expression of true freedom."

    Stith added he is concerned about Obama's desire to "push through laws that will punish viewpoints."

    In early June, Obama issued an LGBT Pride Month proclamation that went further than even that of President Clinton's in its pro-homosexuality slant. For instance, it mentioned for the first time "transgender" people -- a category that includes cross-dressers and those undergoing sex changes. It also called for repealing two policies supported by Clinton: Don't Ask, Don't Tell and the Defense of Marriage Act.

    "If we're honest with ourselves, we'll acknowledge that there are good and decent people in this country who don't yet fully embrace their gay brothers and sisters -- not yet," Obama said Monday. "... We must continue to do our part to make progress -- step by step, law by law, mind by changing mind. And I want you to know that in this task I will not only be your friend, I will continue to be an ally and a champion and a president who fights with you and for you."

    Said Stith, "While Mr. Obama acknowledges that there are good and decent people who do not agree with his views on homosexuality, he makes it clear that ultimately we must change our minds. And he also makes clear that one way he will do that is by changing laws."

    Obama's opposition to the Defense of Marriage Act has frustrated conservative leaders, particularly because he simultaneously claims he opposes "gay marriage." DOMA prevents the federal government from legalizing "gay marriage" and gives states the option of doing the same.

    Conservatives say overturning DOMA not only would force the federal government to recognize "gay marriages" from Massachusetts and other states but could force all 50 states to do the same.

    Byron Babione, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund, a legal group which opposes "gay marriage," called Obama's statement on DOMA "a nonsense statement."

    "DOMA actually protects the right of states to determine social policy with respect to marriage," Babione previously told Baptist Press. "It allows states the freedom to protect marriage between a man and a woman and not to have the same-sex marriages of other states imposed upon them.... Repealing DOMA actually does the opposite of protecting states' rights.... Repealing of DOMA also would do untold damage to the benefits that marriage brings to society. It would open the way to defining marriage and its value out of existence."

    --30--

    Michael Foust is an assistant editor of Baptist Press. To read Obama's full speech, visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_...nth-Reception/. To read how "gay marriage" impacts parental rights and religious freedom click here.
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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Obama AT HRC Dinner: “I will end Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” Gay Rights Activists Ask, “When?”

    October 12th, 2009 at 12:43 pm by Ryan Prado · No Comments

    President Obama’s speech at Saturday night’s Human Rights Campaign
    dinner included



    a reaffirmed pledge to repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, but included virtually no information on when this action might take place. While last week, Obama’s National Security Adviser, James Jones, said that Obama would seek to repeal the military ban on gays in the military “at the right time,”
    Obama reported to be working with Pentagon and congressional leaders on ending the Clinton-era policy.
    “We should not be punishing patriotic Americans who have stepped forward to serve the country,” Obama said. “We should be celebrating their willingness to step forward and show such courage … especially when we are fighting two wars.”
    Obama also acknowledged that “our progress may be taking longer than we like.”
    “I appreciate that many of you don’t believe progress has come fast enough,” Obama said. “Do not doubt the direction we are heading and the destination we will reach.”
    Still, some activists, including National Equality March co-chair Cleve Jones, expressed impatience over a timeline not being issued by the president. Per a Huffington Post story,
    Cleve Jones, a pioneer activist and creator of the AIDS Memorial Quilt, said Obama delivered a brilliant speech, but added “it lacked the answer to our most pressing question, which is when.”
    HRC President Joe Solmonese wasn’t nearly as reticent to accept the president’s promises of progress. In a newsletter, Solmonese said:
    He made it crystal clear that he is our strongest ally in this fight, that he understands and, in fact, encourages our activism and our voice even when we’re impatient with the pace of change.
    And we heard unequivocally about the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: “I am working with the Pentagon, its leadership and members of the House and Senate to end this policy. I will end Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. That is my commitment to you.”
    Finally, we heard something quite remarkable from the President: “You will see a time in which we as a nation finally recognize relationships between two men and two women as just as real and admirable as relationships between a man and a woman.
    It was an historic night when we felt the full embrace and commitment of the President of the United States. It’s simply unprecedented.
    HRC plans to capitalize on the momentum forged for progress by the president’s speech. But how long will the country’s gay rights activists remain patient with important repeals? What do you think of the president’s speech?

    Video after the jump.






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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Obama vows to end 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'

    Sun, 11 Oct 2009 15:39:01 GMT

    President Barack Obama

    US President Barack Obama has pledged to return homosexuals to the military, as the White House mulls over proposed plans to increase the number of its forces in Afghanistan.

    "We should not be punishing patriotic Americans who have stepped forward to serve this country. We should be celebrating their willingness to show such courage and selflessness on behalf of their fellow citizens, especially when we're fighting two wars," President Obama told a gathering of homosexuals on Saturday, according to AFP.

    The remarks come as the top US commander in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, has requested thousands of troops for the war that is witnessing an unfavorable state since the 2001 invasion.

    The icasualties website puts the number of the US soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan at 4349 and 872 respectively, while the number of soldiers unwilling to participate in the wars and those who commit suicide is on the rise.

    President Obama said he is working with the Pentagon and Congress to overturn a law signed by President Bill Clinton in 1993 to ban homosexuals in the military.

    President Clinton had also vowed to end the policy but his decision met with opposition in the US Army and Congress.

    So far, the US Army has discharged some 12,000 service men for revealing their sexual orientation.

    "I will end 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.' That's my commitment to you," Obama said.

    RB/MD

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    October 11, 2009
    Lurching toward Sodom and Gomorrah

    By Bryan Fischer

    Judge Robert Bork wrote a book a number of years ago in which he described an America that was "slouching towards Gomorrah." Well, you can forget the slouching part. We are now running pell-mell, headlong toward Gomorrah, racing into the moral abyss at breakneck speed.

    We are no longer on some kind of slippery slope. The United States is going over a moral Niagara in a flimsy barrel.

    Pres. Barack Obama last night told cheering throngs of homosexual activists that he is determined to change the law that declares that homosexuality is incompatible with military service. He also pledged to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act, the only thing that stands between civilization and darkness when it comes to the definition of marriage. If DOMA is repealed, it is a certainty that some federal court somewhere will compel all 50 states to perform homosexual weddings, regardless of what their own state constitutions say.

    With the hate crimes bill virtually certain to be the law of the land by this time next week, and the Employment Non-Discrimination Act gathering steam, it is possible that all four major objectives of homosexualists will be accomplished in the United States by this time next year. The rewriting of America's moral code on matters of sexuality will be complete.

    Family law will be turned into something unrecognizable if DOMA is repealed, and the homosexual agenda will invade the military if DADT is repealed, and the homosexual agenda will invade the workplace if ENDA is passed.

    The hate crimes law means that it will be a criminal offense to think politically incorrect thoughts about homosexual behavior, transgenderism, and a host of other sexually non-normative orientations. People who engage in normative sexual expression will now have less legal protection than cross-dressers, pedophiles, prostitutes and voyeurs.

    Our schools, under the influence of Kevin Jennings, an avowed homosexual who sees nothing wrong with adult males preying on teenage boys, will become indoctrination centers in homosexual dogma.

    Homosexuality will become the favored sexual orientation in our country in all segments of society, and perversion will be granted special protections in the military and the workplace that are denied to heterosexuals and people of faith. No disagreement will be allowed; in fact, it will be punishable by fines, incarceration or worse.

    Dissent will no longer by the highest form of patriotism. It will instead by the quickest path to getting fired, sued or jailed. Welcome to fascist America.

    If there was ever a time for conservatives to stand athwart history and yell "Stop!", the time is now.

    © Bryan Fischer

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Pentagon’s leaders quiet on military’s ban on gays

    By Leo Shane III, Stars and Stripes
    Mideast edition, Thursday, October 8, 2009

    WASHINGTON — As lawmakers prepare to debate the military’s ban on open homosexuality, they do so with a conspicuous absence of guidance from the president and his most senior military leaders.

    Congress has been slow to take up President Barack Obama’s campaign call to repeal the “don’t ask, don’t tell” law, with the only official movement this year coming in the form of promised but still unscheduled hearings in both chambers this fall.

    Meanwhile, opponents and supporters of the ban have spent months mobilizing: opponents of the ban lining up affected service members to testify; supporters gathering retired commanders to speak about the negative impact on morale and readiness.

    But both sides concede that no military figures would have the impact of a few supportive or dismissive words from Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen, two men whose personal feelings on the matter have been closely guarded.

    Even with hearings expected within weeks, the leaders are sending few signals on whether they prefer the policy and how they wish to proceed.

    “Where do they really stand?” asked Aubrey Sarvis, executive director of the anti-ban Servicemembers Legal Defense Network.

    “What are they going to say, and when are they going to say it?”

    Leaders in the House and Senate Armed Services committees haven’t committed to calling Gates or Mullen into the hearings, but House chairman Ike Skelton, D-Mo., said one of the main goals would be “to understand the perspectives of the civilian and military leadership of the Department of Defense.”

    Mullen and Gates have said only that the military will implement whatever law Congress passes and that no action will be taken without clear instruction from lawmakers.

    On Capitol Hill, staffers have said privately that lawmakers are hoping for a more definitive stance from DOD leadership. And recently Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., wrote Gates and Obama, urging them to come forward with their recommendations for addressing the 15-year-old ban.

    “At a time when we are fighting two wars, I do not believe we can afford to discharge any qualified individual who is willing to serve our country,” Reid wrote.

    Neither Gates nor Obama responded publicly, although retired Gen. James Jones, Obama’s national security adviser, said in a CNN interview Sunday that the president was waiting for the right moment.

    “I know this is an issue that he intends to take on at the appropriate time,” Jones said. “The Defense Department is doing the things it has to do to prepare, but at the right time, I’m sure the president will take it on.”

    Previously, Gates has said he is committed to the president’s recommended change “in a way that is least disruptive to our troops.”

    In July, he told reporters that in the meantime he was looking into a “more humane” application of the law, asking Pentagon lawyers if servicemembers outed against their will could be permitted to remain in the military. Pentagon spokeswoman Cynthia Smith said there has been no movement on that front.

    Gay rights groups initially touted Gates’ idea as a sign the defense secretary had embraced abolishing “don’t ask,” but since then have expressed concern that it hasn’t advanced.

    Capt. John Kirby, spokesman for Mullen, said in a statement that the chairman “understands the President’s intent with regard to repeal of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell,’ and he desires to move forward in a thoughtful, deliberate manner, especially in this time of war.”

    And in a podcast on the Pentagon Channel in August, Mullen said he had spoken with all of the service chiefs and combatant commanders in anticipation of a change in the law, noting that Obama has made his intentions clear on the matter.

    Joint Force Quarterly, the chairman’s in-house magazine, last month published an essay by Col. Om Prakash, a student at the National War College, asserted that “there is no scientific evidence to support the claim that unit cohesion will be negatively affected if homosexuals serve openly.”

    Kirby quickly downplayed the significance of the article, saying the chairman does not approve articles for the magazine, instead leaving that up to editorial staff at National Defense University.

    When asked last month by the Senate Armed Services Committee for his view on the “don’t ask” law, Mullen’s written reply said only that “DoD policy must comply with the public law and only the Congress and the President can change the law.

    “My responsibility is to guide the Armed Forces of the United States consistent with the law.”

    Proponents of keeping homosexuals out of the military say such statements show that Gates and Mullen are simply following orders, and not hinting any support for overturning the ban — “a risky military social experiment,” according to Elaine Donnelly, president of the conservative Center for Military Readiness.

    In June 2008, the House Armed Services Committee held the first hearing on “don’t ask” since its adoption in 1994, but that hearing did not include commentary from military leaders or active-duty personnel.

    House and Senate officials are expected to finalize their plans for hearings this month. This time around, Kirby said, Mullen would “welcome the opportunity to participate in that debate.”

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Gates, Mullen: Military Gay Ban Should be Lifted

    Tuesday, 02 Feb 2010 01:00 PM
    Article Font Size

    WASHINGTON –Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Tuesday that he supports President Obama's decision to seek the repeal of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy prohibiting gays from serving openly in the military and has appointed a "high-level working group" to figure out how to do it.

    Gates, in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee, announced that Gen. Carter Ham, who leads U.S. Army forces in Europe, and Pentagon General Counsel Jeh Johnson will lead the review, according to Fox News. The defense chief called for an "implementation plan" by the end of the year.

    "I fully support the president's decision," Gates said. "The question before us is not whether the military prepares to make this change, but how we ... best prepare for it. We have received our orders from the commander in chief and we are moving out accordingly."

    The military's top uniformed officer also declared Tuesday that gays should be allowed to serve openly in uniform, arguing that it is "the right thing to do."

    Adm. Mike Mullen's statement was the strongest yet from the uniformed military on this volatile issue, although he stressed that he was "speaking for myself and myself only." He told the Senate Armed Services Committee Tuesday he is deeply troubled by a policy that forces people to "lie about who they are in order to defend their fellow citizens."

    Mullen said he knows many will disagree about abandoning the "don't ask, don't tell" policy and said there are practical obstacles to lifting the 1993 ban. But he said he thinks the military can handle it. Mullen is chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and chief military adviser to President Barack Obama.

    Defense Secretary Robert Gates told the panel he is tapping his chief legal adviser and a four-star Army general to lead a landmark study on how the military would lift its ban on openly gay service members.

    Pentagon counsel Jeh Johnson and Gen. Carter Ham, who leads Army forces in Europe, will conduct the yearlong assessment.

    Ham is a former enlisted infantryman who rose through the ranks to eventually command troops in northern Iraq in 2004 and hold senior positions within the Joint Staff. Recently, he helped conduct an investigation into the shootings by a soldier at the Fort Hood Army base in Texas.

    As the Pentagon's top legal counsel, Johnson has played an integral role into the effort to try to close the military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

    Gates' announcement marked a measured step toward President Barack Obama's goal of eliminating the military's policy against gays, which is based on a 1993 law.

    Ham is a former enlisted infantryman who rose to command troops in northern Iraq. Johnson, the Pentagon's general counsel, played an integral role in the effort to close the military prison in Guantanamo Bay.

    © Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    From The Times
    February 5, 2010
    Colin Powell joins the Obama movement backing gays in military

    “You don’t have to be straight in the military,” Barry Goldwater said in 1994. “You just have to be able to shoot straight.”

    Sixteen years on, the conservative icon and former presidential candidate can look down from the hereafter on an American cultural scene where the President and his top commanders at last agree that gays should be able to serve openly in the armed forces.

    They have been joined this week by General Colin Powell, the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who once called homosexuality “a behavioural characteristic” unlike such “benign characteristics” as skin colour.

    General Powell’s opposition to repealing the longstanding ban on gays in the military helped to produce the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law, the death knell of which President Obama announced in his State of the Union address. With General Powell’s change of heart — which aides said came two years ago, even though he waited until Wednesday to announce it — the US Congress is the only remaining obstacle to ending the ban.

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    For decades, the status of gays and lesbians in uniform has created an apparently unbridgeable gulf between liberals who note that gays are allowed to die for their country but not to be open about their sexuality, and social conservatives who insist that lifting the ban would lead to sexual harassment cases and undermine the effectiveness of fighting units.

    It is a potentially explosive political issue that President Clinton tried and failed to resolve in 1994, and that Mr Obama must still sell to Republicans and some Democrats in the centre.

    Among veterans, resistance to lifting the ban remains strong. One identified as Jim Ellington on the US Army’s Facebook page argued that letting gays serve openly was “opening a Pandora’s box with consequences we cannot imagine . . . would you want your daughter to share living quarters, showers, etc with a bunch of lesbians?”

    Among younger military personnel, attitudes appear to reflect those of the public, who have been behind lifting the ban for at least five years. When asked if sexual orientation had been an issue in his unit, one former staff sergeant told a reporter: “Nobody cares.” He added: “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is kind of a joke.”

    More than two thirds of Americans support repealing the existing law, which has led to the discharge of 13,500 servicemen and women when their sexuality became known by their colleagues. Even among conservatives, a majority of 58 per cent back an end to the ban, according to a recent Gallup poll. Since 1994, the proportion of voters opposed strongly to such a move dropped by half to 13 per cent.
    Sensing the shift, congressional leaders have chosen not to pick a fight. “I don’t think it will be a campaign issue,” John Boehner, the ranking House Republican, told NBC News.

    Many in his party disagree, among them Senator John McCain, the decorated Vietnam veteran who called a year-long Pentagon study of the issue “clearly biased”.

    He is unlikely to fight long for the status quo because to do so would put him at odds with Robert Gates, the Republican Secretary of Defence, and Admiral Mike Mullen, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

    Admiral Mullen made history on Tuesday by telling Congress that it was his belief that it was wrong to require gays to “lie about who they are” in order to defend their country. It was the first unequivocal rejection of current policy by someone in his position.

    General Powell said: “If the chiefs and commanders are comfortable with moving to change the policy, then I support it. Attitudes and circumstances have changed. Society is reflected in the military. It’s where we get our soldiers from.”

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Obama pushes 'gay,' green ideals at prayer breakfast

    'Stretching out of our dogmas … can help us regain a sense of civility'


    Posted: February 04, 2010
    12:25 pm Eastern

    President Obama today lobbied for his "gay" and "green" agendas both during the traditional appearance by a president before the National Prayer Breakfast.

    Addressing the idea of civility, he said it actually has improved of late: "We haven't seen any canings on the floor of the Senate any time recently."


    But the president whose party when it held a majority in the U.S. House and a so-called supermajority of 60 votes in the U.S. Senate pushed for its agenda items without, at times, even consulting the minority GOP, said, "At times, it seems like we're unable to listen to one another; to have at once a serious and civil debate."

    He said such "erosion of civility in the public square" produces "division and distrust among our citizens."

    He then suggested the nation needs "to find our way back to civility" and said that means "stepping out of our comfort zones…"

    "We see that in many conservative pastors who are helping lead the way to fix our broken immigration system. It's not what would be expected from them, and yet they recognize, in those immigrant families, the face of God," he said.

    Lobbying for his efforts to forward "green" programs such as new taxes on energy consumption, he said, "We see that in the evangelical leaders who are rallying their congregations to protect our planet."



    Obama traveled to a U.N. climate summit in Copenhagen before Christmas in pursuit of a worldwide plan to reduce "global warming," even though many of the assertions by alarmists now are being questioned. He also has been accused of focusing on "green" – or ecologically friendly jobs – at the expense of the American economy.

    "Stretching out of our dogmas, our prescribed roles along the political spectrum, that can help us regain a sense of civility," Obama said today.

    Raising the issue of his longstanding support for homosexual causes, he said, "We may disagree about gay marriage, but surely we can agree that it is unconscionable to target gays and lesbians for who they are…"

    Obama pushed hard for and signed into a law that gives homosexuals special protections against "hate," a law that, according to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, is a "menace" to civil liberties.

    Obama also chose to honor as a "civil rights pioneer" a homosexual who said the God of the Bible is a "sinful, homophobic bigot" who needs to "seek forgiveness for the pain and suffering which his sinful homophobia has needlessly inflicted upon gay people for the past 4,000 years."

    Obama also credited the American public with sharing his dreams.

    "When we challenge each other's motives, it becomes harder to see what we hold in common. We forget that we share at some deep level the same dreams – even when we don't share the same plans on how to fulfill them," he said.

    And he said it takes more than faith alone.

    "That's why my Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships has been working so hard since I announced it here last year. We've slashed red tape and built effective partnerships on a range of uses, from promoting fatherhood here at home to spearheading interfaith cooperation abroad," he said.

    Each president since Dwight Eisenhower attended the National Prayer Breakfast in 1953 has appeared at the event.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Rabbis Warn against 'Disaster' of Open Homosexuality in the Military


    NEW YORK, February 2, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Rabbi Yehuda Levin, spokesman for the Rabbinical Alliance of America, has warned against the repeal of the "don't ask, don't tell" policy banning open homosexuals from military service.

    "When Americans are suffering economically and millions need jobs, it's shocking that the Administration is focused on its ultra-liberal militantly homosexualist agenda forcing the highlighting of homosexuals and homosexuality on an unwilling military," said Levin in a statement Tuesday.

    "This is the equivalent of the spiritual rape of our military to satisfy the most extreme and selfish cadre of President Obama's kooky coalition," said the rabbi.

    He agreed with Eileen Donnelly of the Center for Military Readiness in concluding that allowing open homosexuals in military service "will hurt the cohesiveness of the military, cause many to leave the army, and dramatically lower the number of recruits, perhaps leading to the reinstatement of a compulsory draft."

    Levin continued: "Thirteen months before 9/11, on the day New York City passed homosexual domestic partnership regulations, I joined a group of Rabbis at a City Hall prayer service, pleading with G-d not to visit disaster on the city of N.Y.

    "We have seen the underground earthquake, tsunami, Katrina, and now Haiti. All this is in sync with a two thousand year old teaching in the Talmud that the practice of homosexuality is a spiritual cause of earthquakes," said the rabbi. "Once a disaster is unleashed, innocents are also victims, just like in Chernobyl.

    "We plead with saner heads in Congress and the Pentagon to stop sodomization of our military and our society. Enough is enough."

    * As reported by Lifesitenews.com

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Wednesday February 3, 2010

    Defense Secretary Gates to Phase Out Ban on Openly Gay Military

    By Kathleen Gilbert

    WASHINGTON, DC, February 3, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Two top military officials confirmed to Congress yesterday that the U.S. military would heed President Obama's urging in his State of the Union address, and begin evaluating how to phase out enforcement of the "don't ask, don't tell" policy banning open homosexuals from serving in the military.

    Defense Secretary Robert Gates said in a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing that, "The question before us is not whether the military prepares to make this change, but how we best prepare for it."

    "We received our orders from the commander in chief, and we are moving out accordingly," said Gates.

    Admiral Mike Mullen indicated that the repeal could cause disruption at a time when the military is involved in two wars, but called it "the right thing to do." Mullen suggested that, while the Pentagon studied the policy change, "Congress can act at the same time on a legislative repeal this year."

    The officers said the Pentagon's review of how repealing the policy would impact unit morale and cohesion would take approximately one year.

    Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and retired Navy captain, said he was "deeply disappointed" with the proceedings against the policy. McCain also took issue with Gates' statement that the Pentagon would study how, not whether, the repeal would be implemented.

    "Your statement obviously is one which is clearly biased, without the view of Congress being taken into consideration," said the senator. The repeal is also under fire from Former Marine Commandant Gen. Carl E. Mundy and 1,160 retired admirals and generals petitioning against it.

    Gay rights leaders hailed Tuesday's step toward repealing the ban, and praised President Obama's leadership on the issue.

    "We acknowledge and appreciate President Obama's leadership in bringing the military into line with his ideal," said Human Rights Campaign president Joe Solmonese.

    "Make no mistake - this would not have happened without his insistence. And we'll need more of that commitment in the months ahead."

    Many individuals associated with the military, however, say that repealing the ban amounts to sacrificing U.S. military readiness for the homosexual political agenda.

    "Activists claim the risk of crimes from same-sex offenders is no greater than it is between servicemen and women. They are wrong," wrote Richard Black, a former chief of the U.S. Army's Criminal Law Division. In a Washington Times op-ed this week, Black criticized the Clinton administration's "campaign to portray gay GIs as 'perfect gentlemen - a boon to the force.'"

    "At the Criminal Law Division, facts contradicted that party line," said Black.

    "Worldwide criminal reports documented serious offenses being committed frequently by homosexual GIs. To be certain, homosexuals weren't the only soldiers committing crimes, but the administration's proposals would have placed homosexuals in situations of forced intimacy, where same-sex attractions invite serious trouble."
    An anonymous defense official told the Times that military men are discontent with
    the possibility of an imminent policy change.

    "It was a difficult year and even more difficult to balance out a number of issues, including the wars and gay rights," said the official. "This will be a historical change, and not everyone is happy with it."

    See related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:

    Congress Takes Aim at “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”

    http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2010/feb/10020111.html






    Chuck Baldwin
    March 26, 2010

    Up next: Open gays in the military and amnesty for illegals


    By Chuck Baldwin

    Fresh off his health care reform victory, President Barack Obama will quickly move to overturn the DOD's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy prohibiting sodomites from serving openly in the US military. He will also move to grant amnesty for millions of illegal aliens. These are Obama's next two agenda items, as he attempts to fulfill his campaign promise to "remake America."

    Already the Pentagon has opened the door for women to serve alongside men aboard submarines, something the Navy has never allowed — for what should be obvious reasons. Furthermore, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates just this week closed the door on rank and file military personnel from "outing" homosexuals that they discover among the troops. This move is seen as a precursor to the soon-coming complete undoing of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

    See Secretary Gates' press conference at:
    http://tinyurl.com/abc-gays-military

    It is difficult for me to imagine that frontline troops could tolerate open homosexuals serving among them. Over the past 30 years, I have spoken with hundreds (literally) of active duty and retired frontline soldiers, sailors, Marines, and airmen, and I can unequivocally say that not one of them supported allowing sodomites to serve openly in the US military — especially in combat units. Not one! And the vast majority of them were also opposed to women serving in combat units.

    I am confident that the head of the Marine Corps, General James Conway, spoke for the vast majority of fighting men when he said that he "opposed ending the ban on gays serving openly in the military."

    Breitbart.com reported, "General James Conway told the Senate Armed Services Committee that he disagreed with Obama's plan to repeal the ban.

    "'My best military advice to this committee, to the (defense) secretary, and to the president would be to keep the law such as it is.'"

    See the report at:
    http://tinyurl.com/gays-conway-disagrees

    Sadly (as many active duty soldiers will attest), these politically correct nincompoops in Washington, D.C., are turning the modern American army — once the finest fighting force in the world — into a hodgepodge of foreigners, gang members, women, homosexuals, and mercenaries. (It worked out so well for Rome!)

    In addition, President Obama is teaming up (even as we speak) with perennial pro-amnesty senators, John McCain and Lindsey Graham (among others), in a fresh push to grant amnesty and a path to citizenship for millions of (mostly Hispanic) illegal immigrants. This will be a "full-court press," and with the Democrats in control of both chambers in Congress, it will probably enjoy the same result as the health care reform bill.

    Of course, on this subject, it would not have mattered one iota had John McCain been elected President instead of Obama. McCain has long been a champion of amnesty for illegals and would most definitely have promoted this particular agenda from the Oval Office, as Obama is now doing.

    In reality, Obama and his fellow socialists and globalists in Washington, D.C., are not simply "remaking America." They are burying the American republic. Not that George W. Bush didn't do his part, because he most certainly did. Obama is simply escalating the pace. As usual in Washington politics, the Republican and Democrat parties seldom actually reverse the course set by their predecessors; they merely adjust the rhetoric (and maybe the speed), but the overall course toward socialism and globalism never changes.

    That the GOP has adopted the new slogan, "Repeal and Replace" (relative to Obama's health care bill), demonstrates how things are done in Washington, D.C. Should the GOP successfully repeal the health care reform bill just passed, they will replace it with a "light" version, which would retain at least 75-80% (my estimate) of the original content. Again, the course toward socialism will remain constant — a Republican takeover of Congress notwithstanding.

    This is not to say that the American people should not vote out every Democrat who voted for the health care bill — they most certainly should! (And then after voting them out, how about tarring and feathering them?) But the only real solution to this — and every other abridgment of liberty and constitutional government — is State nullification.

    The states must declare their independent sovereignty and constitutional authority to check the unlawful attempt by Washington, D.C., to usurp State jurisdiction. This can be done through lawsuits (already happening) and civil disobedience (refusing to comply with the federally mandated health care bill).

    Furthermore, it is also time for individuals to draw their line in the sand and say "No" to Washington's tyranny. I agree with Rob Natelson (except in regard to his suggestion that we try and amend the US Constitution, with which I strongly disagree), where he said, "To the extent they can, physicians and other providers should opt out of the system. Their choices include partial or complete refusal to participate in Medicare, Medicaid, and other government programs; refusal to take any but direct-payment patients; reduced work hours; and even career change and early retirement. Students considering a medical career should now reconsider. Given the ominous nature of the federal health care coup d'état, my guess is that a lot of this will happen anyway."

    See Natelson's column at:
    http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig11/natelson1.1.1.html

    Natelson is right. I personally have knowledge (directly or indirectly) of at least 20-30 physicians who are going to retire, now that the health care bill has passed. They universally state that medical care will most certainly be rationed and that people will be left untreated for cost reasons, not to mention the fact that physicians will now become little more than government employees. The doctors I've spoken with say that this is unacceptable, and they are getting out. And who can blame them?

    Phyllis Schlafly was exactly right when she wrote, "The American people have figured out the issue is not health care, it's freedom."

    See Schlafly's column at:
    http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnal...aspx?id=528172

    Furthermore, parents need to seriously consider not giving their children to the US military — which is currently being designed more to facilitate the agenda of the United Nations and accommodate politically correct social experimentation than to defend the people and property of the United States — at least until the Pentagon is willing to maintain the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy prohibiting homosexuals from serving openly in the military. Dear parent, ask yourself, "Do you really want your sons and daughters showering and sleeping with open homosexuals and lesbians?"

    And the illegal alien problem must also be addressed at the State and local level. Sheriffs such as Maricopa County (Phoenix) Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio will be absolutely essential to the maintenance of law and order, as the central government's open border policy continues to escalate. Otherwise, Washington's ambition of a US/Mexican, no borders, hemispheric union is most assuredly in our not-too-distant future.

    Governors who believe in constitutional government (and who understand what that means) are especially critical at this point in history. We must have governors who are willing to resist these constant intrusions of the central government into the affairs of the State. Governors who will lead the charge for State nullification; governors who will demand that their State's sheriffs uphold the rights and liberties of the citizens of their counties and not allow federal police agencies to harass and harangue them; governors who will resist Washington's attempts to bribe them into submission; and governors who will resurrect their State guards (not talking about the National Guard) and militias must be elected immediately!

    Ladies and gentlemen, the problem in Washington, D.C., cannot be fixed in Washington, D.C. When are we going to realize that? The problem can only be fixed at the State and local level. DC is an arrogant, out-of-control bully; but, folks, make no mistake about it: THE STATES ARE POWERFUL ENOUGH TO STOP WASHINGTON'S MADNESS! The states have the lawful, moral, ethical, constitutional, and, yes, scriptural authority to resist these Machiavellians in Washington, D.C. The only question is, will they do it? And one more thing: the states that do stand up deserve our support, and the ones that don't deserve our contempt. Either way, our liberties will be won or lost at the State level.
    Last edited by vector7; February 5th, 2010 at 23:36.

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Sen. Lieberman Proposes Legalizing Bisexual Behavior in the U.S. Military

    (CNSNews.com) -- Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) introduced the “Military Readiness Enhancement Act of 2010” last week, which would allow homosexuals and bisexuals to openly serve in the United States Armed Forces. Lieberman told CNSNews.com that the bill would legalize homosexual and bisexual activity in the military.

    CNSNews.com asked Lieberman, “In the House version of the bill, sponsored by [Rep.] Patrick Murphy [D.-Pa.], the term sexual orientation includes bisexuality as well. Will your bill allow members of the military to engage in bisexual behavior? Will it be legalized?”

    Lieberman responded, “Well, of course it will be private behavior, but the bill uses the term 'sexual orientation.' The answer is yes. In other words, bisexuality will be, people who are bisexual will be protected if they are otherwise living according to the military code."

    Video URL: http://www.eyeblast.tv/public/checker.aspx?v=Xd8zuzuz6U

    A bill was introduced in the House of Representatives in 2009 that would, if it becomes law, “institute in the armed forces a policy of nondiscrimination based on sexual orientation.”

    The language of Lieberman’s bill has not yet been made available. However, it will likely borrow from the language of the House bill, which would repeal existing law, Article 10, Section 654 of US Code that prohibits homosexual and bisexual activity in the military and does not allow homosexuals or bisexuals to serve openly.

    The military’s current “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) policy, established in 1993 by President Clinton’s Department of Defense, means that military personnel should not ask any soldier about their sexuality and individuals serving in the military should not openly discuss their sexuality. DADT is a policy but it is not the law.

    Federal law Article 10, Section 654, among other things, states: “A member of the armed forces shall be separated from the armed forces under regulations prescribed by the Secretary of Defense if one or more of the following findings is made and approved in accordance with procedures set forth in such regulations:

    “(1) That the member has engaged in, attempted to engage in, or solicited another to engage in a homosexual act or acts ….

    “That the member has married or attempted to marry a person known to be of the same biological sex.”

    Sens. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Mark Udall (D-Colo.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Roland Burris (D-Ill.) and Senate Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin (D.-Mich.) are co-sponsors of Lieberman’s bill.

    Armed Services Chairman Levin (D-Mich.) told CNSNews.com that he has not given much thought about whether the legislation would legalize bisexual activity in the military and did not know whether the bill would do so or not.

    CNSNews.com asked Levin, “In the House bill, the term sexual orientation includes bisexuality, in the House version of the bill. In your bill, will bisexual activity--

    "In my bill?" said Levin. "Ask Lieberman."

    "In this bill--," said CNSNews.com.

    “I don’t know,” said Levin. “You have to ask Lieberman because I just don’t know the answer.”

    CNSNews.com then asked Levin, “Do you support legalizing bisexual activity and homosexual activity in the military?”

    Senator Levin said: “I haven't given enough thought to it. I'd have to give much more thought to it. I don't know. I’d just have to give a lot more thought to it. It’s not something I have focused on.”

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Gay soldiers attack US general who claimed homosexuals were to blame for Srebrenica

    Gay soldiers have threatened to take a US general to court over his claim that the presence of homosexual troops was responsible for the Dutch army's failure to prevent the Srebrenica massacre.

    By Bruno Waterfield
    Published: 4:48PM GMT 23 Mar 2010



    Link to this video

    John Sheehan, a former US general and Nato commander, outraged the Netherlands last week when he alleged that openly gay Dutch soldiers had so damaged military morale that the country's army was powerless to prevent genocide in Bosnia.

    Up to 8,000 Muslim men and boys were massacred by Bosnian Serb forces after Dutch UN peacekeepers failed to prevent the fall of the Srebrenica enclave in July, 1995, a legacy that has continued to haunts the Netherlands.

    Peter Schouten, a Dutch activist, has founded the "Pink Army" to bring a class action lawsuit against General Sheehan in a Californian federal court.

    With the support of the Dutch Homosexuality and Armed Forces Foundation, Mr Schouten is aiming to recruit seven homosexual Dutch soldiers to file slander and defamation charges against the general.

    The litigants will demand a full-page retraction in US and Dutch newspapers, full legal costs and will ask US judges to send the retired general on compulsory "sensitivity training".

    "Nobody should underestimate what an enormous influence these statements of Sheehan had on the American people. There are many who will definitely believe that these statements are true, and that feeds a whole other generation of hate against homosexuals again," said Mr Schouten.

    Gen Sheehan claimed that Henk van den Breemen, a former chief of staff of the Dutch army, had told him that gay soldiers were seen as "part of the problem" which contributed to the fall of Srebrenica.

    Mr Schouten has accused him of lying for "conservative" political purposes during the US Senate hearing, convened to discuss the case for allowing gays to serve openly in the American military.

    "He was lying under oath in front before a Senate Commission. There is also the issue of perjury," he said.

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Pentagon eyes more "humane" enforcement of gay ban

    Phil Stewart
    WASHINGTON
    Tue Mar 23, 2010 8:47pm EDT


    U.S. soldiers prepare to fly while standing next to a CH-53 helicopter in Camp Bastion, Helmand Province, March 22, 2010.
    Credit: Reuters/Asmaa Waguih


    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Pentagon, ahead of any repeal of the U.S. military's ban on gays in its ranks, will likely announce steps this week that may soften the blow on homosexuals affected by the "don't ask, don't tell" law.

    Defense Secretary Robert Gates is expected to address ways to allow more "humane enforcement and application" of a policy that has seen thousands of homosexuals forced out of the military, the Pentagon said on Tuesday.

    "I think he is prepared to offer a way ahead on that subject this week.

    So stay tuned," said Pentagon press secretary Geoff Morrell.

    "Hopefully you'll be seeing him later this week and (he) can address the changes that he is going to be making."

    The long-expected announcement follows a 45-day review ordered by Gates, which was completed earlier this month.

    One of the ways the Pentagon might relax enforcement of the law could be to halt disciplinary proceedings against gay members of the military who are "outed" by others.

    But the Pentagon has been tight-lipped about what steps Gates might announce.

    President Barack Obama has called for a repeal of "don't ask, don't tell," which allows homosexuals to serve in secret but discharges them if their sexual orientation becomes known.

    Gates has supported Obama's push but called for a separate review, due to be completed by December 1, on how to implement the new policy down the road.

    The Pentagon has roundly opposed efforts advocated by some lawmakers to implement a moratorium or an outright repeal before the review is completed.

    While the top U.S. military officer, Admiral Mike Mullen, has supported a repeal, several prominent officers and lawmakers have questioned lifting the ban at a time when the U.S. military is stretched by wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    Americans favor allowing gays to serve openly in the military by 57 percent to 36 percent, according to a recent poll by Quinnipiac University.

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    Default Re: Gays and The Military: A Bad Fit

    Plan Would Allow Abortions at Military Hospitals
    June 10, 2010

    The fight to allow gay and bisexual people to serve openly in the military is already drawing political blood in Washington, but tucked into the same 852-page Pentagon policy bill as the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell” is a little-noticed amendment that takes on another emotionally charged issue: making abortion easier for military women in war zones.

    In a vote that advocates of abortion rights sought beforehand to keep quiet, the Senate Armed Services Committee passed a provision on May 27 to allow privately financed abortions at military hospitals and bases. Current law bans abortions in most cases at military facilities, even if women pay themselves, meaning they must go outside to private hospitals and clinics — an impossibility for many of the estimated 100,000 American servicewomen in foreign countries, particularly in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    The result, the advocates say, is that military women serving overseas do not have the same access to basic health care that other American women do, or that is ensured by the laws of the country they are fighting to protect. “It’s an issue of basic fairness,” said Cecile Richards, the president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, one of eight women’s advocacy groups that lobbied heavily last month for the amendment’s passage.

    Opponents say that because the abortions would be performed in government facilities, taxpayer money would still help subsidize the underlying costs — the reason that Senator Ben Nelson, a Nebraska Democrat who is opposed to abortion, voted against the amendment. “He opposes government-provided or funded abortion,” said Jake Thompson, a spokesman.

    The amendment, sponsored by Senator Roland W. Burris, Democrat of Illinois, passed 15 to 12, and advocates say they are cautiously optimistic about its chances in the full Senate this summer and even in negotiations with the House, where Representative Ike Skelton, the Missouri Democrat who leads the Armed Services Committee, remains opposed.

    Similar amendments have failed numerous times since a ban was put in place by Congressional Republicans in the 1990s, but this is the first such vote in the Obama administration, when Democrats are in control and women have been at war in Iraq and Afghanistan for nearly a decade. The Pentagon declined to comment on the proposed legislation.

    The Army and the Marine Corps do not make public how many servicewomen become pregnant each year in Iraq and Afghanistan, but whatever the number, thought to be relatively small, an unwanted pregnancy in a war zone is a professional as well as a personal crisis for a woman. With no access to safe abortions outside the base, regulations require that a woman be flown home within two weeks of the time she finds out she’s pregnant, a particular stigma for unmarried women that ends any future career advancement.

    “The military doesn’t forgive you,” said one unmarried former Marine who tried to self-abort when she got pregnant in Iraq in 2006. “You’re never going to get promoted again.” The Marine, who asked that her name not be used, said she ended up in a military hospital in Iraq with severe bleeding and was eventually honorably discharged.

    Despite the current ban, abortion has been available through shifting regulations in the United States military in the past. In 1970, three years before Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that made abortion legal, the Department of Defense quietly adopted a policy permitting military hospitals to provide “therapeutic” abortions, regardless of the laws of the states they were in. President Richard M. Nixon revoked the policy less than a year later, saying that abortion was “an unacceptable form of population control.” But there was still an Air Force regulation on the books that required even married female officers who became pregnant to be discharged unless they terminated the pregnancy, although they could not do so in military hospital.

    As recounted in a new book by Linda Greenhouse and Reva B. Siegel, “Before Roe v. Wade: Voices that Shaped the Abortion Debate Before the Supreme Court Ruling,” in 1972 a career Air Force officer and a Roman Catholic, Capt. Susan R. Struck, challenged the regulation in a lawsuit that reached the Supreme Court. But before the case could be argued by Captain Struck’s lawyer, the future Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the Air Force waived the policy.

    Taxpayer-financed abortions were common in American military hospitals in the first years after Roe v. Wade — there were 26,000 abortions performed between August 1976 and August 1977, according to a 2002 Congressional Research Service report — but Congressional Republicans began restricting access to them in the late 1970s.

    Shortly after President Bill Clinton took office in 1993, he signed a memorandum allowing abortions at military facilities if they were paid for with private money. But by 1996 the Republican-controlled Congress had instituted the current blanket ban on abortions at military facilities, allowing them only in cases of rape or incest, or to save the life of the mother.

    Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, was among those to vote last month against the most recent amendment, arguing that it would be impossible to ensure that no federal money would be used even in privately financed abortions.

    “The effect of the Burris amendment would be to open the door for President Obama to reinstate a Clinton-era policy that allows abortions to be performed in overseas facilities on a pre-paid basis,” said Kevin Bishop, a spokesman for Mr. Graham.

    Senator Scott Brown, Republican of Massachusetts, who has been a supporter of abortion rights, also voted against the amendment. His office declined to comment on his reasons.

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