Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Family Research Council proud of its brazen hypocrisy regarding the military

Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council

This portion of an email sent by the Family Research Council underlines the organization's hypocrisy and audacity when it comes to issues of the lgbtq community:

Apart from the Church itself, no institution has a bigger bulls-eye on its back than the U.S. military. "These installations exist to carry out the national defense of our nation," said Congressman (Tim) Huelskamp, "not to facilitate a narrow social agenda." To keep the troops from being distracted by the President's radical social agenda, Rep. Huelskamp has introduced a bill that stops the administration from sneaking around U.S. marriage law and giving its blessing to homosexual unions in the military. His legislation would keep a promise that the administration made but has not kept. Under this bill, military bases would not operate as same-sex "wedding" chapels. "A military installation or other property owned, rented, or otherwise under the jurisdiction or control of the Department of Defense shall not be used to officiate, solemnize, or perform a marriage or marriage-like ceremony involving anything other than the union of one man with one woman."

Also, chaplains, who have been under extraordinary pressure to oversee these ceremonies, would not be "directed, ordered, or required to perform" any service that is contrary to his faith or his church's faith. It's a shame that we have to pass laws like these to protect values that were once considered common place. But the White House leaves us no choice. So help Rep. Huelskamp fight for the troops who are busy fighting for us. Contact your House member and ask him or her to sign on to the Military Religious Freedom Protection Act. 

First of all, no chaplain has been under "extraordinary pressure" to officiate over a same-sex wedding ceremony.  As near as I can tell, there has never been any article about any chaplains complaining about facing this "problem."  The only thing we have heard is hysteria from the Family Research Council and like-minded groups that this sort of thing could happen.

But it couldn't.  According to an article in the Washington Post in September of last year:

The Pentagon will permit military chaplains to perform same-sex marriage as long as such ceremonies are not prohibited in the states where they reside, it said Friday.

Defense Department guidance issued to military chaplains said they may participate in ceremonies on or off military bases in states that recognize gay unions. Chaplains are not required to officiate at same-sex weddings if doing so is counter to their religious or personal beliefs, the guidance said.

But what if a chaplain wanted to officiate a same-sex wedding? Well the FRC can't stop that (and I am sure that the organization probably wants to) but it seeks to make this option more difficult by pushing for a law saying that these weddings can't take place on a military base.

In other words, at the same time FRC is defending the right of military chaplains to not have to officiate same-sex weddings, the organization is undermining the rights of military chaplains to do want to officiate these weddings by making it difficult for them to do it on base.

What's more, the organization is bragging about both of these efforts in the same email.

You have to admit. That's pretty brazen.

Related post:

16 reasons why the Family Research Council is a hate group

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bill.johnson19d@gmail.com said...

It is brazen but then they apply absurd double standards to virtually everything they do. Its How NOM can get away with praising businesses that oppose marriage equality and then turn around and proclaim that it is businesses role and duty to stay neutral on these issues when a business supports marriage equality.

When it comes to these groups the only form of religious freedom that they care about is the religious freedom to hold positions that they share and that double standard is applies to any “religious freedom issue” Thus in their book trampling on the religious freedom of chaplains that want to perform a ceremony for same sex couples isn’t a problem because they don’t recognize their religious freedom only their own.

Finally as if being dishonest wasn’t enough they have to throw in an outright lie or two as well. As is pointed out in the post, no chaplain has been placed under extreme pressure to perform a marriage ceremony against their will, but really the lie here goes beyond even that. Such protections were in place in the original DOD protections and furthermore the congress has already passed a restatement of those protections in the last defense authorization act. When those protections passed the FRC claimed that is was a big victory in protecting chaplain’s religious freedoms, even though those protections were already in place, and yet here they are again acting like those protections don’t exist. So they are ignoring even their own words to continue this lie.

Daniel Wachenheim said...

Thanks for your excellent work and reporting. You are doing important work!

Anonymous said...

Their statement about chaplains being under extreme pressure to perform equal marriages, just goes to prove that the Research part of their name is just there for show as they have no clue what real research entails.

It seems they think that the word 'research' in their name will lend them credence and to some it probably does. It is unfortunate they are allowed to have such a misleading name.

EvilI said...

Bill, y'know those protections weren't needed in the first place.

Religious officials can always choose which marriages they perform--imagine a Catholic priest being asked to perform a wedding for a Muslim and an atheist, he'd just laugh!
It's just silly to suggest that it needs to be reiterated for the gays in the first place.