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National Prayer Network

DON'T ASK, DON'T THINK

By Rev. Ted Pike
1 June 10

The Senate Armed Services Committee and the House of Representatives have voted to overturn “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”—forcing open homosexuality in the military. Liberal lawmakers are pushing the bill forward even though the Pentagon has not yet released its own recommendations on the issue. Amendments in the House and Senate both say the bill would not become law until after the Pentagon study is issued; premature passage assumes the study will be favorable.

In a 2008 military poll, 58% of active duty responders said they were against a repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Based on the poll, National Review estimates that up to 10% of active duty forces would choose to quit the military if forced to cohabit with open homosexuals. The leading House Democrat on military policy himself unsuccessfully opposed the repeal. He said the law would create “disruption” while the military is in the middle of two major conflicts—in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Merrill McPeak, Air Force chief in 1993 when the ban was passed, wrote an op-ed for the New York Times urging that it remain in place. He explains that under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” service members are no longer asked whether they are homosexual; they no longer have to lie. They simply have to remain quiet about it. “Seventeen years ago, the chiefs — all four of us, plus the chairman and vice chairman — concluded that allowing open homosexuality in the ranks would probably damage the cohesiveness of our combat units.”

Repeal advocates focus on the rights and job performance of individual homosexuals, says McPeak, but the military isn’t about the individual. It is about group cohesion when facing deadly threats. The military has a right to exclude open homosexuals whose lifestyles weaken the warrior culture required for open combat.

McPeak also points out that the military has a special right to discriminate against candidates. Overweight candidates are routinely ejected from military training, and no one complains about the cost or damaged morale. “The services exclude, without challenge, many categories of prospective entrants. People cannot serve in uniform if they are too old or too young, too fat or too thin, too tall or too short, disabled, not sufficiently educated and so on. This, too, might be illegal in the civil sector. So why should exclusion of gay people rise to the status of a civil-rights issue, when denying entry to, say, unmarried individuals with sole custody of dependents under 18, does not?” If weight, height and education are substantive issue, then highly controversial and morally objectionable sexual behavior is even more so.

Although it is increasingly not recognized as anything but fringe “homophobia,” many religious service members believe homosexuality is a very serious sin against God and man. Family Research Council says, “The courts have consistently upheld the military's 1993 homosexual ban and affirmed convincingly that the law is constitutional. Congress and the courts have long acknowledged that the military has the responsibility to focus on creating and preserving readiness. Military service is a privilege, not a right, and anything that detracts from the ability of our service personnel to fulfill their mission should be prohibited. The sexual tension that would be introduced by forced cohabition with homosexuals indisputably fits into that category.”

Please call your senators and ask them to vote against a repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell." The Senate will probably vote this week! Call toll-free 877-851-6437.

 


Rev. Ted Pike is director of the National Prayer Network, a Christian/conservative watchdog organization. 

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