Main | Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Military Chaplains File DOMA Brief

The Chaplain Alliance For Religious Liberty, which claims to represent over 2500 current and former military clergy members, has filed a Supreme Court brief against the overturn of DOMA.  The brief largely treads the ridiculous claim that anti-gay chaplains will be denied promotions or disciplined for refusing to conduct same-sex marriage ceremonies.  The brief also cites several bits of the bible and the Manhattan Declaration, whose signees vow to disobey laws that grant LGBT rights.
The harm to military religious liberty will be felt in at least two broad ways. The first, as amici’s collective centuries of military experience instructs, would be the weeding out of service members who hold traditional religious beliefs about marriage and the family. Service members are evaluated for promo-tion and retention via processes, such as Officer Evaluation Reports, which specifically ask whether the service member under consideration promotes the military’s equal opportunity policy.8 8See Army Officer Evaluation Report at 2 (asking whether the evaluated officer “promotes dignity, consideration, fairness, and EO [i.e., equal opportunity], see generally Army Regulation 623-3, Evaluation Reporting System. If this Court declares irrational and impolitic traditional religious beliefs about marriage, that inquiry would, for the first time, prove toxic for many devoutly religious service members. Even if nothing directly negative was put into such Reports, the lack of the superlative commendations that are necessary for advancement would be enough to permanently stall a service member’s career. And in the military, if a service member is not on the way up, he is on the way out.
From the first line of the group's mission statement: "The Bible is the inerrant, infallible Word of God in the original languages and the absolute standard for moral conduct."

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