NOM BLOG

Chaplains on Trial? Tell Congress to Protect the Liberty of our Servicemen and Women!

 

Tell Congress to Protect the Liberty of our Servicemen and Women!

Dear Marriage Supporter,

Did you see this day coming?

Who would have thought we needed a federal statute to protect military chaplains—and other servicemen and women—who believe that marriage is between one man and one woman?

But just months after the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell, there is a full-on battle for marriage raging within our nation's armed forces.

Urge your congressman to co-sponsor the Military Religious Freedom Protection Act today!

Take Action Now

Last April, the Navy issued new "sensitivity training" guidelines that required Navy chaplains to perform same-sex marriages. Thanks to leadership from Congressmen Tim Huelskamp and Todd Akin, the Navy backed down and rescinded the guidelines.

In September, the Department of Defense issued two more memos, requiring all military facilities to be available for same-sex weddings and allowing chaplains to participate in same-sex ceremonies.

Recognizing this growing threat to the religious liberty of our armed forces, Rep. Tim Huelskamp of Kansas last week introduced the Military Religious Freedom Protection Act (H.R. 3828). The bill does three things:

  1. Protects military chaplains from being forced to participate in any ceremony or function that is against their conscience or religious beliefs.
  2. Protects our men and women in uniform from being discriminated against because of religious beliefs opposed to same-sex marriage or homosexuality.
  3. Prohibits the use of military facilities for same-sex marriage ceremonies.

But President Obama is refusing to do his job as President—picking and choosing which laws are worth enforcing. He refuses to defend DOMA in court and is actively undermining it at every turn. And same-sex marriage activists have been working to leverage the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell to harass and intimidate chaplains and other service members who are standing up for marriage.

Tell your Congressman we need to protect the religious liberty of our armed forces—just like they put their lives on the line to protect ours. Tell your Congressman to co-sponsor the Military Religious Freedom Protection Act (H.R.3828) today.

Click here to send your message now!

Thank you.

Contributions or gifts to the National Organization for Marriage, a 501(c)(4) organization, are not tax-deductible. The National Organization for Marriage does not accept contributions from business corporations, labor unions, foreign nationals, or federal contractors; however, it may accept contributions from federally registered political action committees. Donations may be used for political purposes such as supporting or opposing candidates. No funds will be earmarked or reserved for any political purpose.

This message has been authorized and paid for by the National Organization for Marriage, 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20006, Brian Brown, President. This message has not been authorized or approved by any candidate.

55 Comments

  1. Aaron
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

    this is how it reads. Regarding chaplain participation, consistent with the tenets of his or her religious organization, a chaplain may officiate a same-sex, civil marriage: if it is conducted in accordance with the laws of a state which permits same-sex marriage; and if the chaplain is, according to applicable state and local laws, otherwise fully certified to officiate that state’s marriages. No one is being forced to go abandon there beliefs

  2. Thom
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    Brian - Perhaps you should show us this REQUIREMENT for chaplains to perform same sex weddings. No pastor has every been required to do so and you know it.

    While gay marriage never made it into the 10 commandments, I'm pretty sure lying did. How do you reconcile this?

  3. Cassandra.
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    "Last April, the Navy issued new "sensitivity training" guidelines that required Navy chaplains to perform same-sex marriages."

    The guidelines didn't require chaplains to do anything. They were issued after the request of a Chaplain who wanted to perform SSM ceremonies after DADT's repeal: a religious right now taken away. No requirements, just an allowance of freedom of religion.

  4. tam
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    No, the April guidelines did not require chaplains to conduct same-sex marriages. That's blatantly untrue.

  5. Hyhybt
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    "Required" is not a synonym for "allowed."

  6. Kate
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

    Lies. It was never proposed that Chaplains be "required" to perform same sex marriages. Here’s what those (now-rescinded) guidelines said:

    "Regarding chaplain participation, consistent with the tenets of his or her religious organization, a chaplain may officiate a same-sex, civil marriage: if it is conducted in accordance with the laws of a state which permits same-sex marriage; and if the chaplain is, according to applicable state and local laws, otherwise fully certified to officiate that state’s marriages."

  7. Zack
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    I don't see how this can be since an amendment to the Defense Authorization bill was introduced that said military chaplains were not required to perform such ceremonies.

    But don't let that stop radical leftists from thinking that that people should be forced to against their morals.

    http://www.addictinginfo.org/2011/10/16/should-military-chaplains-be-forced-to-officiate-same-sex-weddings/

    This guy is nuts.

  8. MIke J.
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

    NOM caught lying again, at this point it's redundant.

  9. MIke J.
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

    ::::Breaking News::::

    Amazon joins Microsoft and Starbucks in supporting marriage equality. Boycot that Kindle now!

    Washington state loves equality!

  10. Louis E.
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

    The proposed law is still a good idea,especially the prohibition on SSM at military facilities.

  11. Jack
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    Liar Liar Liar they are NOT required to perform them there is a moral exemption clause in the general order. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/federal-eye/post/gay-weddings-can-be-performed-by-military-chaplains-pentagon-says/2011/09/30/gIQA0hX19K_blog.html

  12. yoshi
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

    Like in the civilian world - no chaplain in the military is required or forced to marry anyone. More false outrage over nothing.

  13. Layne
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    In other news, Exodus International, the country's largest and oldest ex-gay organization, is on the brink of bankrupcy.

    Guess praying away the gay doesn't work anymore. Not like it ever did.

  14. Posted February 1, 2012 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

    Prohibiting a Lutheran minister from performing the rites of his faith at his chapel is not "religious freedom". Rather it is religious oppression.

  15. Publius
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

    The military is not a private institution. It is a function of the state, and its officers are under an obligation to obey lawful military orders.

    Let me ask the question, if SSM is a constitutional right, a consequence of the 14th amendment, and if military chaplains are serving under the direction of a government that believes this, then should they have the right to refuse to perform a same sex wedding?

    If traditional marriage is just like Jim Crow, isn't this just like a chaplain refusing to minister to integrated troops?

  16. M. Jones
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

    I called and made another donation to NOM. We ask a lot of our military, having to worry about someone staring at their backsides should not be one of them.

  17. Barry
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

    It's more like a chaplain refusing to perform an interracial marriage because they claim it violates their religious beliefs

  18. MIke J.
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

    Pubelius and M jones, you're veing lied to, no chaplain is being required to perform SSM. Stop being so oblique and read the real order:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/federal-eye/post/gay-weddings-can-be-performed-by-military-chaplains-pentagon-says/2011/09/30/gIQA0hX19K_blog.html

  19. Publius
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

    @Barry

    "It's more like a chaplain refusing to perform an interracial marriage because they claim it violates their religious beliefs."

    And how do you feel the military should react to that?

  20. Randy E King
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

    Truman, Eisenhower, and Nixon each opposed inclusion of same-sex sexual addicts into the military do to a well established propensity for treason: Privat Manning proved them correct. As it turns out; if you can justify same-sex sexual activity to yourself you can justify treason as well.

    "It is one of the few ways where man can sin against himself."

    Vote GOP this go around and lets get back to protectint the backs of the boys defending our fronts.

  21. Barry
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

    I'd say that they should let a chaplain perform or not perform any religious ceremony they want. But I don't really know much about the stated mission and purpose of military chaplains and how performing marriages relates to it

  22. Publius
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

    @Mike J.

    I am writing under the assumption that no such sensitivity guidelines ever existed or were ever published. I am not part of NOM, and I am not responsible for any errors of fact in the original post.

    I in no way object to your correction of their claim.

    However, let me ask again, why not have such guidelines if this is just like a chaplain refusing to perform an interracial marriage? How do you feel the military should react to that?

    This is hardly being oblique or off topic. It goes right to the heart of the question of what the military guidelines should be and to the perennial argument that SSM is just like interracial marriage.

  23. Barry
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    I want to respond to Publius but the moderator here apparently doesn't want him or her to see what I said.

  24. Barry
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 9:08 pm | Permalink

    I'd say that the military should neither force nor prohibit a military chaplain from performing whatever religious ritual they want. I am unaware of the current policy on interracial marriages and the justification for it, but I would say they should be able to decline to perform any marriage they disagree with.

  25. AM
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

    The Military Religious Freedom Protection Act (H.R. 3828) will ensure:

    -- Protection of rights of conscience of military chaplains: A chaplain cannot be required to perform or participate in any duty, rite, ritual, ceremony, service or function that is contrary to their own conscience, moral principles, or religious beliefs or those of their faith group.

    - Protection of rights of conscience of military members: A service member cannot be denied promotion or other training opportunities for any sincerely held belief he has about the appropriate or inappropriate expression of human sexuality. In other words, a service member cannot be discriminated against if he says that his religious beliefs include an opposition to homosexuality.

    - Military facilities or other property owned by the Department of Defense cannot be used to perform a marriage or marriage-like ceremony involving anything other than the union of one man with one woman.--

    Don't see how anyone could be opposed to this, a pretty straight forward protection of freedom of conscience.

  26. Randy E King
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

    The U.S. military is a product of the Federal Government and MUST obide by federal law. If the U.S. Military were to permit marriage corruption it could be argued that the Federal government had, in fact, sanctioned marriage corruption.

  27. Publius
    Posted February 1, 2012 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

    @Barry

    Thank you.

    @Mike J.

    What do you think the policy should be?

  28. Spunky
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 12:31 am | Permalink

    I think the policy should be that Brian Brown should get his facts straight. That's a joke--I know I'm not answering your question.

    Seriously though, this type of flagrant inaccuracy is unacceptable at any level, especially for the president of a national organization.

    NOM supporters, you should demand the truth. After all, you're the ones giving away money.

  29. FabulousAna
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 2:59 am | Permalink

    So many blatant lies in this post. It's like fox news got cancer and decided to give the tumor it's own tabloid magazine.

  30. Scot Colford
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 7:40 am | Permalink

    Absolutely untrue. Shameful. Is your goal so unpopular that you really have to lie to garner support?

  31. Posted February 2, 2012 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    Aaand these guys are the same ones who, pre-repeal, were shouting that if you're going to be in the military you have to abide by the rules?

    Hypocrites. When the rules change, all of a sudden they're squealing repression. The US military is there to defend the country, not force religion down everyone's throats.

  32. Son of Adam
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    NOM never said that army chaplains are required to perform SS "marriages". They said and I quote:

    "Last April, the Navy issued new "sensitivity training" guidelines that required Navy chaplains to perform same-sex marriages. Thanks to leadership from Congressmen Tim Huelskamp and Todd Akin, the Navy backed down and rescinded the guidelines."

    Brush up on your reading comprehension, people.

  33. Diana
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    As if any person who believes in traditional marriage is going to take the word of these radical LGBT activists posting on here. I'll trust Brian and NOM any day over those morally bankrupt Nazis.

  34. JR
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    Diana - Everyone here believes in what you call "traditional marriage". Some realize that gay people are born gay and exist and thus "traditional marriage" is not the only way. "Traditional marriage" and "gay marriage" exist side by side in many places. If you look at what NOM wants to do and compare that to what those who point out Brian's misleading error want to do, it becomes obvious who the "morally bankrupt Nazis" really are.

  35. Marcos
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    Looks like this has blown up and gone viral. Google is all over this shameful LIE created by Brian Brown. Tsk Tsk.

  36. Marcos
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    In other news, Washington State legislator has passed marriage equality 28-21! Four Republicans voted for it. Watch out for NOM's wrath guys!

  37. Arthur
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    Whatever happened with that New Hampshire vote? I thought they were supposed to vote on that yesterday as well.

  38. Pat
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Wait... them being *allowed* to do something threatens their religious freedom, so you want to *ban* it (which would be ridiculously immoral, unethical, and illegal)?

    I think somebody needs to be beaten with a dictionary until the meanings of "allow" and "freedom"--at the very least--are remembered.
    Normally I'd just give you one, but I'm pretty sure that you get the dictionary mixed up with the thesaurus's list of antonyms, given the way you always use words to LITERALLY MEAN THE OPPOSITE of what they actually mean.

  39. Spunky
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    It has been almost 24 hours since the post was launched.

    Practically all of the 37 (!!) comments are corrections to Brian Brown's bolded, italicized inaccuracy.

    Yet there has been no effort to correct the article and no admission of error.

    There is no excuse for this.

  40. Publius
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    @Mike J. et al

    I am still writing under the assumption that Brian got his "facts" wrong. Fair enough.

    What do you think the policy should be? Only Barry has given an answer. Anyone else?

  41. JR
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    Here is what the guidelines actually say:
    Regarding chaplain participation, consistent with the tenets of his or her religious organization, a chaplain may officiate a same-sex, civil marriage: if it is conducted in accordance with the laws of a state which permits same-sex marriage; and if the chaplain is, according to applicable state and local laws, otherwise fully certified to officiate that state’s marriages.
    I agree 100% with the guidelines. Should a chaplain not wish to officiate at a legal wedding, he should be free to not do so. What I disagree with is saying that one who does not believe in same sex marriage has his or her liberty limited because someone he or she serves with may participate in a same sex marriage. That is utterly ridiculous.

  42. Louis E.
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    JR,
    the existence of same-sex sexual relationships should be prohibited as a matter of military discipline regardless of persons afflicted by same-sex sexual attraction being permitted to remain in the ranks.The fallacy of allowing same-sex sexual relationships to go uncorrected wherever "gay people" are found has to end...the identity is no excuse for the activity.

  43. Rich
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    The fallacy of allowing same-sex sexual relationships to go uncorrected wherever "gay people" are found has to end...the identity is no excuse for the activity.

    LouisE, give us one specific tool/action/penalty you would recommend to correct gay people who engage in same-sex sexual activity.

  44. Publius
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    @JR

    Thank you for agreeing with those guidelines, which imply a right to refuse to officiate.

    @Mike J

    Do you agree with a chaplain's right to refuse to officiate?

  45. Louis E.
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    Rich,
    for example,the state benefits adhering to marriage must be reserved exclusively in perpetuity to opposite-sex relationships.

  46. Regan DuCasse
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    @#16 MJones: apparently you've never served with anyone gay in the military or paramilitary (such as law enforcement). You can't tell the gay soldiers from the non gay. Why that is, is because obviously gay soldiers can achieve the same comportment as expected.
    And as for that cheap stereotype shot about looking at backsides, it's a bankable fact that there are some straight men, most straight women aren't attracted to either.
    Meaning, why should straight men take it for granted they are all that attractive to gay men?

  47. Pat
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    Publius: The question is itself ridiculous.
    Religious officials can *always* choose which marriages they perform. The idea that just any couple could walk up to one and demand that a marriage ceremony be performed regardless of the officials religion is just... That's never been a thing that's happened. Ever.
    And gays are hardly on the top of the list that a not-crazy religious official would say "No" to, even if they *do* hate gays--which, as this article tries to avoid pointing out but does actually say, not all do.

  48. Son of Adam
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

    The statement was: "Last April, the Navy issued new "sensitivity training" guidelines that required Navy chaplains to perform same-sex marriages."

    Did Brian not add that: "Thanks to leadership from Congressmen Tim Huelskamp and Todd Akin, the Navy backed down and rescinded the guidelines."

    Only dishonest charlatans would claim that Brian meant that chaplains are presently required to perform SS"M". Such a claim is based on statements pulled entirely out of context. Either that, or they have no reading comprehension whatsoever.

  49. Paul in Canada
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    I hope readers of this blog have now realized what a lie NOM is peddling. Too bad a 'christian' organization has to disobey their own tenants of truthfulness to get $$ to continue their bigotry.

    In case you missed it: the actual guideline read:
    Regarding chaplain participation, consistent with the tenets of his or her religious organization, a chaplain may officiate a same-sex, civil marriage: if it is conducted in accordance with the laws of a state which permits same-sex marriage; and if the chaplain is, according to applicable state and local laws, otherwise fully certified to officiate that state’s marriages.

  50. tam
    Posted February 2, 2012 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

    SOA, yes, Brian is talking about the rescinded guidelines from April, the guidelines that some people have quoted, guidelines that never required chaplains to marry same sex couples. Brian is simply wrong about the April rescinded guidelines, and it's a crying shame he hasn't fixed his mistake.

  51. Louis E.
    Posted February 3, 2012 at 1:01 am | Permalink

    Regan DuCasse,
    if you want the "gay" soldiers to continue to perform interchangeably with others,it's best to deny them the differentiating circumstance of being able to maintains same-sex sexual relationships while on active duty.

  52. Publius
    Posted February 3, 2012 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    @Pat

    If the chaplain refused to perform the marriage specifically because he believed and articulated that marriage is strictly a heterosexual institution, and for no other reason, or because he believed homosexuality is condemned by the Bible, or because his faith tradition teaches it is a disordered behavior, would you be OK with that?

    If photographers, who aren't government employees can be sued for not participating in gay weddings, and if state employees can be fired for refusing to issue SSM licenses, and if the DOMA violates the constitution (as held by the DOJ) and is equivalent to Jim Crow (as is continually said on this site), why should officers of the government who happen to be in the military be allowed the right of refusal?

    Should a chaplain be allowed to counsel the would-be couple or give a sermon based to anyone based on the following texts: Gen 19:1-29, Lev 18:22; 20:13, Rom 1:18-32, 1 Cor 6:9-11, 1 Tim 1:9-10, 2 Pet 2:7-8?

  53. Publius
    Posted February 3, 2012 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    @Pat

    "That's never been a thing that's happened. Ever."

    That same could have once been said about SSM in America or about photographers being sued for not participating in such a wedding, or for churches being sued for not renting out their properties for SSM's, or JP's being fired for not issuing SSM licenses.

  54. Publius
    Posted February 3, 2012 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    A chaplain is not just any minister. He is a government employee and under government orders. If the DOMA violates the constitution (as held by the DOJ) and is equivalent to Jim Crow (as is continually said on this site), shouldn't that affect the latitude we give chaplains?

    The question is ridiculous only if the DOMA does not violate the constitution and is not like Jim Crow.

  55. Priya Lynn
    Posted February 7, 2012 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

    Publius, a chaplain is not required to perform marriages as part of his employment and so cannot be diciplined for refusing to do something he is not required to do. Marrying couples is not a required job duty.

    Issuing marriage licences is the state employee's job so if they refuse to issue same sex marriage licences they are refusing to do their job and should be fired.