Army chaplains oppose DADT repeal on religious speech grounds

With the Pentagon set to release their survey of military opinion on “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” (DADT) Tuesday, military and religious groups are speaking out against repealing DADT on the grounds that it will restrict religious freedom in the Armed Services.

Opponents of repeal fear that the official normalization of homosexuality in the military will conflict with the ability of military chaplains to minister freely for fear of being charged with discrimination if they speak about what their faith dictates with regards to homosexuality.

In September, a group of 66 retired military chaplains wrote of their concerns and opposition to repeal in a letter to President Barack Obama and Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

“[T]he proposed ‘non-discrimination’ law may effectively ban chaplains from expressing their religious beliefs on homosexual behavior,” they wrote. “The affects of this ban would be felt keenly within a chaplain’s religious duties, but it would extend outside the pulpit, too. Since chaplains are tasked with teaching classes in moral leadership and ethics both on armed forces bases and at branch schools, such censorship would prevent them from providing the full moral instruction their faith background gives them.”

Gary McCaleb, senior council of The Alliance Defense Fund, told The Daily Caller that one of the most concerning elements of DADT repeal is the threat that chaplains will be charged with discrimination. According to McCaleb, the official acceptance of homosexual behavior can only be enforced through a nondiscrimination policy, which will infringe upon the ability of chaplains to preach, and, if chaplains do preach against homosexual behavior, it will likely result in reprimand.

“The chaplains who will speak as a matter of religious faith and morality that homosexual behavior is wrong are obviously not going to be complying with the nondiscrimination policy that affirms homosexual behavior,” McCaleb said.

Retired 28-year U.S. Army chaplain Col. Ronald Crews was one of the 66 chaplains who signed the letter to Obama and Gates. Crews told TheDC that while DADT is not perfect, it is a good compromise.

“It has worked well to allow people of faith to be able to serve in the military without feeling muzzled,” Crews said. “What my chaplains are concerned about it is, will they still be able to preach from all of the scriptures in their role? Secondly, will they be able to counsel soldiers who come to them who are concerned about sexual behavior and will they be able to speak to them their convictions from the scriptures about sexual behavior.”

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  • thephranc

    Gays all ready serve and they spout their imaginary friend dogma. Allowing gays to be honest about who they are isn’t going to magically make what you all ready “preach” a crime.

    Gays are good enough to fight and die just as long as you don’t know they are gay…..

  • Joe Astroturf

    They better speak out like General Amos or they’ll have their children having people like Barney Frank and the safety school czar in bunkers defending their freedom.

    Please Check out song called teapartiers I can’t hear you at

    Here’s a verse

    The real teabaggers are Barnie and the safe school czar
    Your kids aren’t safe in a bus or car
    Jennings might not report it if their molested at a bus station
    lets hope he don’t have Nambla take them on vacation

    Britain will have company as they ration mammograms and cortisone
    The U.S. is now joining them so they won’t be alone
    Bill Ayers his hero and Jarrets slum lord bets
    Mine our Gerald Walpin , Private Long and the Swift Boat vets
    I know him and his czars think this songs not balanced and fare
    We just want nothing to do with that trainwreck Obamacare

  • gooners

    So bigotry should be allowed, if it’s done in a Christian way? Sorry, but the times they are a-changing. If you’re concerned about your right to preach hate, go preach somewhere else.

    • Offensive Bias

      Sure, when someone disagrees with a homosexual they’re hateful and bigoted. Can you come up with any sophisticated philosophy to justify your perverted lifestyle?

      Go preach your liberalism elsewhere.

      • gooners

        Nope, I’ll preach it right here until the site owners go bankrupt or close my account. What’s perverted is your need to push your lifestyle onto everyone else, and make us accept your hate as valid disagreement. But you’re bound to lose!

        • Offensive Bias

          Goon, you don’t know what HATE is when you carelessly throw the word around in attempt to silence the debate. HATE is the sin of murder. I don’t see Christians killing homosexuals unless we watch a modern Hollywood movie.

          I’m not pushing any lifestyle just keeping the natural order of things. If you don’t like it then go north to Canada unless your already there. You whole ideology on this is built on clay feet, your only weapon is propaganda and indoctrination to the weak minded to make them think homosexuality is normal.

          • gooners

            I would never attempt to silence you, silly bigot. One of the best things about free speech is blockheaded hatemongers like you make yourselves known, so the civilized can avoid you. Why would I leave my country over your inability to cope? My side is winning. In a short time you knuckledragging homophobes will be left huddled in a little group grumbling about the way things used to be like your ideological cousins on Stormfront. It couldn’t happen to a more deserving bunch. Cheers.