If you’ve been following the recent fallout from the recent repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, you’ll know that the vocal fringe of the right-wing has said some pretty absurd and hateful things about the potential results of allowing openly gay soldiers in the army. Specifically, that doing so will “pussify” or make effeminate the otherwise manly army. Because skirts are incapable of killing brown people, I guess. Or something. I don’t know.
Anyway, the real issue here is less to do with how effeminate the army is as a result of allowing people into the army who prefer penis to vagina. Rather, the issue is whether the right-wing are allowed to demonize homosexuals as a matter of faith. That’s right — it’s not about human rights, and it’s not about the capabilities of the army. It’s a certain sect of people that demand the right to go on discriminating against some outgroup. It’s clawback at the inconvenience of losing one more excuse, one more bludgeon, with which gays can be beaten back into their closets.
[J]ust one month ago [Washington Post “On Faith” blogger] Sekulow wrote in the same pages, “If DADT is repealed, the American Center for Law & Justice is committed to advocating for the ability of military chaplains to do their job according to the dictates of their faith. The ACLJ has a long history of defending military chaplains.” And he had previously told readers, “Take your head out of the sand and recognize that the teachings of the Christian faith direct America’s opinion of homosexuality.”
This is, as I’ve said, being spun as the religious homophobes having their rights revoked — their rights to revile and demonize people for their in-built genital preference. This war against the “homosexual agenda” is nothing but a pretense — it is a fight for the right of those fundamentalists that take the Bible literally at one verse in Leviticus even while they ignore the remainder of the chapter. Sarah Posner goes on:
At its core, the war against the “homosexual agenda” pits the rights of LGBT people against the “Christian nation” mythology. Since we are a Christian nation, the argument goes, our laws must reflect that Christian theology condemns homosexuality. Despite being on shaky ground both theologically and historically, religious right legal organizations — claiming the need to counter the ACLU and its advocacy for both LGBT rights and the separation of church and state — have attempted to transform this culture war argument into a legal one.
To make my position perfectly clear: you do not have the right to deprive others of rights due to your own bigotry. This is not a right being taken away from you. This is a right being restored to another human being. If it has the side-effect of putting you at odds with your religious faith, then there’s a distinct possibility that your religious faith does not have humankind’s best interests at heart. There is the distinct possibility that if you cannot reconcile what you feel to be just and humane to other humans, and what your religious commandments tell you to do, that your religion is wrong.