Military Chaplains Leaving Over DADT Repeal Skyrockets To Whopping 2

In the lead up to Congress’ repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, right-wing types argued that allowing gays to serve openly would of course mean the end of religious freedoms for military chaplains. This was, of course, a scare tactic intended to drum up opposition to repeal: you can’t legislate away religious freedoms without repealing the First Amendment. But that doesn’t matter to folks like MassResistance, who have interpreted the Pentagon’s instructions for anti-gay chaplains as an attempt to kick them out of the military: “US Army now warning Chaplains: If you don’t like the homosexual agenda, get out!,” reads the headline. Actually, that’s not true at all.

What the DADT repeal training actually tells chaplains is that if they cannot reconcile their beliefs about homosexuality with the new policy allowing gays to serve openly, they can volunteer to leave. There is no mandate. There is no requirement. They are being offered an out.

What’s more telling, though, is how many chaplains have accepted the offer. Last we heard just a single chaplain, from the Navy, had taken off because of DADT’s impending repeal. Lt. Col. Carleton Birch, a spokesman for the Army chief of chaplains, says one chaplain from the Army has left also. That’s one out of 2,900, which means 99.965 percent have opted to remain.Maj. Joel Harper, an Air Force spokesman, says exactly zero of its 520 active-duty chaplains have asked to take off. That’s 100 percent choosing to stay.

But don’t let that stop Elaine Donnelly, president of the Center for Military Readiness (and secret email advocate), from readying the fearmongering: “The training is engaging in a form of strategic deception. I think active-duty people are being reassured nothing will change. That is an unrealistic expectation. … Many [chaplains] may be saying that now they will not leave voluntarily but that doesn’t account for those who would be forced out involuntarily when all of these conflicts become more apparent.”

To be clear, no chaplains will be “forced out involuntarily” for merely sticking to their Bible-based beliefs that being gay is a sin. If they use the Bible, however, to harass a gay soldier? Yeah, that would be grounds for dismissal.

So, as it stands, one chaplain from the Navy has left, and one from the Army did also. That brings the total number of military chaplains who cannot stomach the idea of homosexual soldiers being honest about their sexuality to … two.

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  • Cam

    Good, 2 bigots gone. They shouldn’t have been ministering to our soldiers anyway.

  • Scott Bonzitski

    Well, if anyone does leave [the service], to me that is not only putting their beliefs before God but, also America. We have a right to live here just as much as anyone else does. If someone does something to disrespect another, they should cease to be an American. This is the land of the free and the home of the brave. If you are not brave enought to help us stay free, then feel “free” to vacate these lands. Where are the “guts” that made America what it used to be? Many of the people in [~or~ trying to get into] politics use slander and false lies anyways in these days and ages.FOOL the ignorants/sheep into following you at any co$t. Seems like a cult to me…SB


    >~ Fully furnished home at no cost to you
    >~ Full and complete health coverage for you and your family
    >~ A vehicle to use at zero cost
    >~ The option to not go into a conflict area
    >~ Salary in the upper five figures
    >~ Pension and benefits for life…………….

    Suddenly those chaplins find that living amongst the Gays isn’t so very much against their “solid beliefs” to give up all of the above, and “take a stand”……………

  • SteveC

    Such a pity that more of these religious charlatans have not left.

  • Steve

    I wonder how many priests and ministers have volunteered to JOIN the military Chaplains Corp, as a direct result of DADT having been repealed. I expect that answer might be, more than two.

  • Jeff K.

    The Army of the United States (a secular nation) should not even have “chaplains.” It should instead have troop counselors to deal with any problems of morale.

  • Jim Hlavac

    Or, chaplains who are anti-gay can re-examine their beliefs and realize that some things are just too ridiculous, and then change their beliefs. Sure, it’s a right to believe gays are terrible, but it’s a human duty to get over that belief. And that goes for the rest of society too. Join the tens of millions who have come to realize that we’re no big deal. Come to the reality that science points to; God wanted us here. Come to reality that gay folks are the only ones who are going to be gay and we do nothing much different than anyone else. And that seems to be what many a military chaplain is doing; as is most of society now.

    Ah, but there’s still the cranks.

  • Jeffree

    Chaplains who leave the military will discover life is a lot less cushy in the real world. And gee guess what, there are LGBT civilians too !

  • Nathan

    @Jeffree: Honestly, I doubt this is so much about gays as it is people seeing an easy way out of their enlistments.

  • Jerry

    How many chaplains left to protest waterboarding?

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