Will President Obama bring back the draft?

Tony Perkins President, Family Research Council
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One headache President Obama has not had to deal with is anti-draft demonstrations.

He has had enough problems with Tea Party protests against his gushers of deficit spending, bailouts, and health care takeover. And, of course, leftists on the Mall massed to demonstrate their beliefs. Many complained that he had not gone far enough in nationalizing key industries and had failed to institute a single-payer health care system.

The president may be too young to remember the huge anti-war demonstrations of the 1960s and early 70s. President Johnson and President Nixon saw their hold on the country’s young people seriously challenged by millions who rallied and roared their opposition to the Vietnam War and military conscription.

Barack Obama is opposed to the draft as a matter of principle, to be sure. So are most politicians in both parties. But the president’s drive to repeal the ban on open homosexuality in the military could have this unintended consequence: It could bring back the draft.

The deeply flawed “survey” of current members of our all-volunteer military should not lull policymakers into a false sense of security. Or, in this instance, a false sense of national security.

The survey assumes Congress will roll over for the administration. It assumes homosexuals will be serving openly in the services and asks benign questions of respondents about how they intend to deal with it.

The survey presumes that homosexuality is like skin color. Well, it’s not. You can easily have a neighbor in military housing of a different race. That presents no problem for your military family. But if the neighbors are a same-sex couple, then your family is affected in a very serious way. You must explain to your children that their beliefs and deeply-held values about marriage, about questions of religious faith, must be suppressed.

At base social, sports, and religious activities, your military family will be confronted again and again with forced acceptance of a lifestyle you regard as immoral. Military chapels will be required to host same-sex “marriages,” or, until liberals succeed in repealing the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), they may have to settle for same-sex “commitment ceremonies.”

Base “diversity” efforts will promote the homosexual lifestyle. Parents of younger children will be hard-pressed to shield their kids from these. Department of Defense Dependent Schools (DoDDS) will be turned into advocacy centers for acceptance of the homosexual lifestyle. We may even see a military “czar” appointed for this purpose — just as the egregious Kevin Jennings was given a perch at the Department of Education. Jennings wants to “queer” elementary education throughout the nation. He even wrote the foreword to the book, Queering Elementary Education.

Opposition voices will be stifled, as mine was when I was disinvited as a speaker for an Air Force prayer luncheon. I had no intention of speaking about that issue. No matter. I was on record as one who supports the current law of the United States!

All of these undesirable outcomes will cause a sharp reduction in recruitment. We have a top general and admiral who now say, outrageously: If you don’t like it, “get out!” They are asking for an exodus.

The military is not a red state/blue state institution. It unifies our country. It draws its dedicated members from all regions. Still, it is no secret that the military is a socially conservative institution. It recruits heavily from rural areas in the South, the Midwest, and the Inter-Mountain states.

In our larger cities, black and Hispanic recruits are encouraged to consider the military — which has historically been a great ladder of achievement for racial and ethnic minorities.

These are the very areas and groups who have been most resistant to the demands of the homosexual lobby. These are the very regions and groups who have rallied to our side whenever we put a defense of marriage initiative on the ballot

If these regions and groups do not enlist in our all-volunteer force, President Obama will be driven to the place he does not want to go: the military draft.

No action on repeal of the military ban on homosexuality should be taken in this lame-duck session of Congress. No votes should be taken — except to postpone major social changes.

A Congress filled with scores of defeated members should not engage in this huge and hazardous social experiment.

I suggest instead that the House Armed Services Committee hold hearings next year. They should bring military recruiters to Washington to testify — with assurances of no retaliation. And they should focus on this question: What would be the impact of repeal on military recruitment?

For liberals who sneer and say it could never happen, that Barack Obama would never consent to a military draft, I have just one question: How’s the closure of Guantanamo Bay working out for you?

Tony Perkins, a Marine Corps veteran, is President of the Family Research Council.