Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Pentagon to allow chaplains to perform marriages

Segregation in this country started to die when the military was integrated. Gotta hand it to the Pentagon, they can make things happen when they have to. I think the repeal of DADT will accelerate the repeal of DOMA. And now, the pentagon will allow military chaplains who choose to do so to marry same sex couples, in accordance with local laws.

From Stars and Stripes:
Starting immediately, chaplains can perform same-sex marriage and union ceremonies on U.S. military installations in locations where it doesn’t violate state or local laws, the Pentagon announced Friday.

The policy reversal follows on the heels of the repeal of the “don’t ask-don’t tell” law, Clifford Stanley, undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, wrote in a memo to the military department secretaries and service chiefs.

“A military chaplain may participate in or officiate any private ceremony, whether on or off a military installation, provided that the ceremony is not prohibited by applicable state and local law,” he wrote…..

Although it’s a core duty of military chaplains is to provide religious support — and in certain cases perform religious services — for troops with different beliefs from their own, chaplains won’t have to perform gay marriages if they don’t want to, Stanley wrote.

“[A] chaplain is not required to participate in or officiate a private ceremony if doing so would be in variance with the tenets of his or her religion or personal beliefs,” he wrote.
Fundy heads are exploding, predictably.

1 comment:

Erp said...

How few of those with heads exploding remember that chaplains have always had the right to refuse to marry a couple (e.g., I doubt any Catholic military chaplain presides over weddings where one partner is divorced [and the previous marriage not annulled] or where neither partner is Catholic). Also they forget that any two men (or any two women) can in states that permit it get married by a non-military minister or have a civil ceremony; this is really a matter of freedom of religion for military chaplains when acting in a private capacity.

What is the overhanging shadow is the lack of recognition of these marriages by the federal government and by certain states.