There was a great Italian film (and lousy American remake) called Everybody’s Fine. The plot centered on a retired man whose five adult children stood him up during the summer holidays. All of his children created false impressions of happiness and success in their lives, even though their lives were more than a bit of a mess. They didn’t want to trouble or disappoint their father, figuring he would be upset knowing their true situations.
Everybody’s Fine could be the Obama mantra for charting the course for the New Morality as played out in removing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” from the Armed Services, and putting traditional Christians on notice, they aren’t really welcome in the Brave New Society being engineered in the Obama era. Of course, military service for Catholics in America has many problematic features, some dating back before Obama and his naked assault on traditional Christian faith. But let us start with the recent history of overturning “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”.
Back on November 30, 2010, Stars and Stripes published a story by Leo Shane III entitled Pentagon Study Anticipates Smooth Integration Of Openly Gay Troops. The story detailed a study conducted by “Top Defense Department Officials” that indicated that “70% of troops believed a repeal [of DADT] would have a positive effect or no effect on their ability to complete missions.” Overall, the study concluded that only 30% of the troops expected a negative effect if the law was repealed. Within the analysis was the fact that 43% of Marines expected a negative effect, with 58% of Marines in combat specialties expecting negative effects. The Pentagon study gave President Obama the green light to set the wheels in motion in Congress, with only the proviso that the military brass would just need to provide “strong leadership, a clear message, and proactive education [emphasis mine] to minimize the impact of repeal.”
After DADT was ended, fast forward to September 10, 2012, Politico’s Katie Glueck article, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” Repeal Hasn’t Hurt Military. According to Palm Center, a University of California, Los Angeles School of Law- affiliated research center that focuses on “sexual minorities” in the military, “The repeal of DADT has had no overall negative impact on military readiness or its component dimensions, including cohesion, recruitment, retention, assaults, harassment, or morale.” The study added: “…in no case did negative consequences outweigh benefits. In balance, DADT repeal has enhanced the military ability to pursue its mission. [...] Only two verifiable resignations linked to the policy change occurred- both from military chaplains, according to the study.”
To make matters even worse, we have NBA player, Jason Collins quoting from the military study to give him more assurance in his decision to become a mass media-contrived hero: “Look at what happened in the military when the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy was repealed. Critics of the repeal were sure that out military members would devastate morale and destroy civilization. But a new study conducted by scholars from every branch of the armed forces except the Coast Guard concluded that ‘Cohesion did not decline after the new policy of open service was put in place. In fact greater openness and honesty resulting from the repeal seem to have promoted increased understanding, respect and acceptance.’”
So what are we to make of all this as faithful Catholics? First thing to do I would say is to have some Catholic scholars break down the two studies mentioned above. Was the methodology sound? What about bias? What’s the history with this Palm Center- an “affiliated research center that focuses on sexual minorities in the military”? Assuming the studies are more or less accurate, I would propose a bold next step. Discourage our sons and daughters from signing up or continuing on with the Obama armed services.
President Obama arrogantly bet that America’s faithful Christians wouldn’t dare to start encouraging their young to avoid military service. He knew all along that his military leaders would exercise “strong leadership”, have a “clear message”, and utilize “proactive education”, to undermine whatever traditional Christian beliefs the troops had, which would get in the way of the New Morality Military. The military operates as a “Yes, sir!” institution. If the Commander-in-Chief and all the career officers order the embrace of open homosexuality among the troops, then the troops are pretty much going to have to go along with it; that’s how authority works in military environments. I say we call Obama’s bluff and start encouraging Christians to take a pass on his brainwashing program.
I served in the military back when I was a young man, and I know that the mindset and beliefs of an individual can be heavily influenced by what is transmitted by those in command above your rank. I remind any young person who approaches me about joining the military, that when you join you become a weapon in the hands of the political leaders. You don’t want to find yourself feeling you have to disobey orders in order to obey your conscience.
The issue of pushing the homosexual agenda on our troops is part of a larger reconfiguring of America’s moral compass. According to George Neumayer’s May 9, 2013 Crisis Magazine article, the de-Christianizing of our soldiers is evidenced by many seemingly unrelated events recently in the news. He lists such things as the Defense Department materials classifying Catholics and Evangelicals as extremists on par with jihadists, the Air Force ending a course on Just War after 20 years, and many other developments. Neumayer writes, “The two trends within the military on display in the press recently- rising cases of sexual misconduct, declining Christian presence- are exactly what they should expect.”
Beyond the reach of our own borders, and predating the Obama administration, is the terrible effect our military strategies have had on the Christian communities in the Middle East. The sad fact is that President George W. Bush did nothing to promote or protect the Christians of Iraq.
It makes absolutely no sense to be part of military campaigns that almost seemed designed to destroy indigenous Christian communities. And it makes no sense to become part of a hierarchical military command that is rotten at the top, and has the goal of undermining the traditional Christian faith of the troops. I would say that it is time to say to our sons and daughters: I am proud that you wish to serve God and Country, but right now serving in the pro-homosexual activist/anti-Christian military would be dangerous to your spiritual life. We also need to see a drastic change in the way our political leaders regard the need for protection and assistance for our brothers and sisters in Christ who are suffering in the Middle East. Until we see these changes, I am going to urge you to find another way to fulfill your duty to God and Country.
It is time to make obvious to President Obama and his minions in the mass media and elite cultural circles that \”Everybody is Not Fine\” and our youth will not be his cannon fodder.