Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Family Research Council: DADT repeal could lead to military approval of bestiality

The Family Research Council should really give up the ship regarding gays in the military.

Don't Ask, Don't Tell was repealed and according to Marine Gen. James F. Amos, a top marine official who was initially against it, the repeal is working just fine.

God forbid, however that the Family Research Council is letting go. From an email by the group and its president, Tony Perkins:

The dust is finally starting to clear over the rubble of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" repeal, and our military is beginning to see what's on the horizon: a campaign to radicalize the country from the Pentagon out. It started by toppling the barrier to open homosexuality. And it continues with an assault on marriage and religious freedom. Now, in its rush to accommodate the Left, Congress may have inadvertently opened the door to even more perversion. As part of the Defense Authorization bill, liberals are pushing to make sodomy a legal activity under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). In its haste to make gay sex an official part of military life, the Left could be unintentionally repealing the ban on bestiality too. Article 125 of the UCMJ, which Democrats are targeting, clearly states: "Any person subject to this chapter who engages in unnatural carnal copulation with another person of the same or opposite sex or with an animal is guilty of sodomy."

Don't you just love how Perkins uses conditional words in the sentence "In its haste to make gay sex an official part of military life, the Left could be unintentionally repealing the ban on bestiality too."

That gives him an out to say "hey, I am just speculating" when someone calls him and FRC on the nonsense behind the statement.

Well before he even begins, let me just say:

"Tony, you aren't speculating. You are bullshitting You all lost this one. Get over it."

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Will gay students be 'collateral damage' to the cause of 'religious liberty?'

The lgbtq community would do well for itself to pay attention to two lawsuits fueled by religious right organizations. From an article in today's Augusta Chronicle:

An attorney for a graduate school counseling student told federal judges in Atlanta on Tuesday that the student’s First Amendment rights were violated when professors at Augusta State University sought to punish her for her biblical views on gay rights.

ASU put Jennifer Keeton on academic probation for saying it would be hard for her to work with gay clients, and threatened to expel her unless she attended events such as Augusta’s gay pride parade, Keeton’s attorney Jeff Shafer told the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Keeton initially sued ASU  when she was expelled from its graduate student program because she refused to take part in a mediation program. It required her to read material about counseling gays and increase her exposure to the gay community. The mediation program was set up after Keeton said that she would tell gay potential clients that their orientation was wrong and then try to help them "change" their sexual orientation.

Her lawsuit was struck down by U.S. District Judge Randal Hall last year. Hall said that the university had every right to set requirements for students. Hall also said that Keeton provided no proof that she was discriminated against because of her religious faith. According to The Augusta Chronicle in an article at the time:

In an Aug. 11 hearing, ASU professors testified that the plan was not a punishment for voicing her beliefs, but a tool to teach Keeton how to counsel clients while not imposing her views.

"All three professors testified that they never told (Keeton) that she was required to change her religious beliefs in order to stay in the counseling program," Hall wrote.

He noted that Keeton did not testify at the hearing nor present any witnesses in support of her motion.
Hall said Keeton's unwillingness to adhere to the school's viewpoint-neutral code of ethics set by the American Counseling Association constitutes a refusal to complete the curriculum.

Keeton is now appealing this ruling. Today's article goes on to say that she allegedly told other students that she was interested in practicing "conversion therapy," or therapy which claims to change someone's sexual orientation. It also said that there was some concern that since Keeton was scheduled to practice in middle and high schools as a part of her degree program, her views could pose problems to students.

Keeton's case is very similar to that of Julea Ward, who was removed from Eastern Michigan University's counseling program in 2009 because she did not want to counsel to gays for the same reason as Keeton. She is also studying to be a guidance counselor. She sued EMU but lost last year for the same reason as Keeton. Her case is also being appealed.

The counseling programs by Eastern Michigan University and Augusta State University are guided by a code of ethics by the American Counseling Association. It is this code which both universities say are at odds with  Keeton and Ward. It forbids counselors from discriminating in their practices or imposing their view on potential clients.

Interestingly enough, the same anti-gay organization, the Alliance Defense Fund, is handling both Keeton and Ward's case. David Kaplan,the chief professional officer for the ACA, had this to say about the Alliance Defense Fund:

"The driving force behind this is the Alliance Defense Fund. They are specifically looking for legal cases, not just in counseling, to promote their agenda"

In both the Keeton and Ward case, it is being demanded that the university counseling programs in question give allowances based on someone's religious beliefs, even though these allowances would be against the code of ethics which govern these programs.

What's more, these are cases in which both defendants have expressed a desire to be school guidance counselors.

It leaves me asking one question.

If universities can be successfully sued by individuals who don't want to learn about counseling to gays on the grounds of "religious beliefs,"  what would stop middle and high schools from being sued by individuals who may not be hired if they state that they will not counsel gay students on those same grounds?

Where would that leave the lgbtq students who would undoubtedly be collateral damage to this supposed adherence to "religious liberty?"

Related post:

Why I get a nagging feeling every time I hear the phrase 'religious liberty'

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'NOM's embarrassing loss in Iowa is punctuated' and other Wednesday midday news briefs

The families they don't want you to see

It always amazes and angers me that every time organizations like Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council, or the National Organization for Marriage talk about the importance of families, they conveniently omit same-sex families.

And always amazes and angers me to count the times we allow them to get away with it:

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