In what has become his trademark fashion, President Donald Trump issued a major policy statement 140 characters at a time yesterday, effectively re-enacting the DoD’s prohibition on transgenders serving in the US military.
The critics immediately pounced.
As accurately noted, the tweet does not explain how this new policy will be implemented — specifically, what it means to transgenders who have been allowed to served openly since President Obama made a similar unilateral decision last year. That said, it seems reasonably obvious that the ban on enlistment will continue.
This is, of course, exactly what the policy was just one year ago under President Obama — as well as Bush, Clinton, Bush, Reagan, etc, etc. President Trump has done nothing more than restore a longstanding policy.
The rebuttals were predictable, and weak: Read more
CAPT Mark Melson, commanding officer, USS Makin Island, speaking at his ship’s LGBT pride event:
“Pride Month shows the importance of diversity in our Navy, and how that diversity makes us stronger.”
How, precisely, does diversity in sexual behavior make the Navy stronger? “Pride month” doesn’t make that explicit (no pun intended), and the Department of Defense has not said homosexuality has improved the ability of the military to accomplish its mission.
If diversity in itself is what “makes [the military] stronger,” the US military is doing it wrong with Read more
Critics have come out in force against US Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt) after he said he would not support President Trump’s nominee for the deputy director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, Russell Vought. Sanders’ reason? Vought has Christian beliefs, which he expressed in a column defending Wheaton College in 2016 in which he said that “Muslims stand condemned”:
Muslims do not simply have a deficient theology. They do not know God because they have rejected Jesus Christ his Son, and they stand condemned.
In his questioning during the confirmation hearing for Vought’s nomination to the OMB, Sanders asked:
Do you believe people in the Muslim religion stand condemned? Is that your view?
…I don’t know how many Muslims there are in America. Maybe a couple million. Are you suggesting that these people stand condemned? What about Jews? Do they stand condemned too?
In your judgment, do you think that people who are not Christians are going to be condemned?
I would simply say, Mr. Chairman that this nominee is really not someone who this country is supposed to be about.
Atheists, liberals, and Christians alike have condemned Read more
This Saturday, a parade through Washington, DC celebrating homosexuality will be led off by a US military color guard. The “tradition” started in 2014, and even then homosexual advocates recognized the significance of having the military ‘sanction’ their event by participating in it.
Notably, at about that same time churches had local military color guards suddenly banned from their traditional patriotic celebrations — even though those military units weren’t participating in the church’s event, but merely posting the colors and then leaving. As recently as last December a military band was restricted from participating in a Christmas radio show, yet it seems parading down the streets of gay pride is kosher. There were hopes expressed even then that the new Commander in Chief might bring about a change to that conflict.
The tragedy, of course, is Read more
An unnamed Air Force chaplain sent a formally formatted complaint to Michael “Mikey” Weinstein in early May, claiming the National Guard Bureau had established “Protestant Christianity” as the “official religion” of the Guard’s Strong Bonds program.
As if to reinforce the fact the letter was written specifically for public consumption, just a few hours after receiving it Weinstein sent off his “demand” letter to General Joseph Lengyel, Chief of the National Guard Bureau. Weinstein made no new allegations but asserted those of the chaplain, who had complained about a line from a National Guard MOI on Strong Bonds. Regarding Strong Bonds events, the official Memorandum of Instruction said
One voluntary worship service will be conducted at all overnight training sessions, serving to the extent possible, the largest religious demographic represented in accordance with the Constitutional mandate to provide for the “free exercise of religion”. (See “DODI 1300.17”; “AFI 52-101”).
Military regulations can sometimes be ambiguous, vague, and even self-contradictory, so it is understandable that even well-meaning or intelligent members of the military might misunderstand them.
But even graciously speaking, that’s not what happened Read more
Yesterday Michael “Mikey” Weinstein was covered by Newsweek in an article entitled “Trump Effect Inspires Radical Christians in Military” (warning for ad-heavy site).
The article began [emphasis added]:
Donald Trump’s election has led to such a steep rise in fundamentalist Christian evangelizing and religious bigotry in the US armed forces that the matter is reaching the level of a “national security threat…”
The allegation that Donald Trump has inspired “evangelizing and religious bigotry” in the military is a serious charge — one which “award-winning” columnist Nina Burleigh utterly fails to support with any evidence. What follows in her article is a rah-rah fluff piece that does little more than parrot the words of Mikey Weinstein as if Weinstein himself is preaching the gospel. Burleigh dispenses with “anonymous sources” and simply has one: Mikey Weinstein.
In an apparent effort to bolster her claim — or perhaps sensationalize it — Burleigh cites an exhaustive list of “charges” against the military as a result of Trump’s election, which she seems Read more
Ed Brayton, a long-time secularist blogger and ally of Michael “Mikey” Weinstein and Chris Rodda, recently wrote a post entitled “Klingenschmitt’s Cluelessness on Religious Tests for Office.”
One of Brayton’s pastimes is keeping up with former Navy Chaplain and former Colorado state legislator Gordon Klingenschmitt, himself a prolific public speaker and writer.
Brayton quoted Klingenschmitt from a LifeSite news article in which Klingenschmitt was commenting on the decision by Tennessee state legislator Mark Green to withdraw from nomination as Secretary of the Army. Klingenschmitt said
The bully left is now openly creating an unconstitutional religious litmus test for public office. If you believe the Bible, or quote the Bible in public, they claim you are unfit for office and apply their political labels until you quit.
Brayton mocked Klingenschmitt’s statement as “absurd,” and then followed it with his own absurdity: Read more
“While our country remains untainted with the principles and manners which are now producing desolation in so many parts of the world…we shall have the strongest reason to rejoice in the local destination assigned us by Providence.
“But should the people of America once become capable of that deep simulation towards one another and towards foreign nations, which assumes the language of justice and moderation while it is practicing iniquity and extravagance; and displays in the most captivating manner the charming pictures of candor, frankness, and sincerity while it is rioting in rapine and insolence: this country will be the most miserable habitation in the world.
“Because we have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge Read more