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Recently the Washington Times featured an article that spotlights what ADF has been predicting for some time: using the forced acceptance of open homosexual behavior in the military (which has been disguised as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal) to attack the federal Defense of Marriage Act.  As we said then:

[P]erhaps the only institution more deeply respected and widely recognized as the training ground for inculcating societal values than the military is marriage.  And normalizing homosexual conduct in the military will not only—as an ACLU attorney recently stated—be a cultural precursor to normalizing homosexual “marriage,” it will actually create the perfect storm for destroying the primary federal law protecting marriage—the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”).

Basically, it will go like this: a same-sex couple will get “married” in a state like Massachusetts. One or both members of the couple will be in the military, and will press for married couples’ benefits, like housing and medical coverage, arguing that the military cannot discriminate against homosexual “marriages.”  And when the military denies the request based on DOMA, that Service member will sue in a sympathetic federal court to get DOMA declared unconstitutional.  And, quite possibly, the only federal bulwark against a nationwide redefinition of marriage will be breached.  Sound far fetched?  The first part of the strategy is already happening: a soldier in a homosexual relationship applied for married housing just after Defense Secretary Gates announced the goal of repealing current policy.

The Obama administration’s startling duplicity since that prediction makes the strategy to attack DOMA via the military all the more clear.  In a recent letter to Congress, Attorney General Holder cited the move to force open homosexual behavior on the military as evidence that the time-honored and logic-based definition of marriage in the Defense of Marriage Act must be abolished as unconstitutional.  Mr. Holder’s Department of Justice then followed that radical position up by filing an anti-DOMA brief in ongoing litigation that even sympathetic observers have called “a gay rights manifesto.

The President is using one time-honored preserver of our country—the military—to attack another—marriage.  Defenders of marriage, though, should not be surprised.  Marriage is so foundational an institution that it is related to most facets of life.  Thus, for instance, defending marriage also means defending religious liberty.  Now, due to the creativity of marriage’s attackers, it means defending the military itself.

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ADF Litigation Counsel - Church Project

ADF Senior VP; Senior Counsel Gary McCaleb writes:

February 2, 1943:  the bitter chill of the North Atlantic suffused the dusk as an Allied convoy laden with troops and gear wallowed its way to Europe.  Those who could sleep did so uneasily; German submarines crept about nearby.

The first hour of February 3, 1943 would be the last hour for the transport ship Dorchester.  Minutes after midnight, the ship was gut-shot by a German torpedo.  Dark terror ensued—without power or lights, heaving in the winter seas, the 902 men aboard sought their salvation from the deep.

Only 230 would succeed. 

But from that horror emerged the remarkable story of four Army chaplains who acted with uncommon valor—steadying the panicked troops, guiding them to safety, urging calm amidst the chaos.  As the ship pitched in its death throes, the four handed their own life jackets to troopers who had none, and with that final act of grace they surrendered their lives for the sake of others. 

While the valor was uncommon, the will to serve was not – and the military properly honored the right of all chaplains to serve both as religious leaders and secular counselors.   But sadly, that high regard is now undercut by President Obama imposing open homosexual behavior on the military by repealing the so-called “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy.

Now, while the repeal is scarcely a done deal, military officials who prefer political correctness over moral courage began implementing some bizarre changes.  The breaking point came when the Navy ordered its chapels to be open to same-sex “marriages,” in defiance of the federal Defense of Marriage Act. 

Legislators swiftly responded and the Navy backed off—for now.  But the conflict between the impending military sexual “morality” and that taught by the vast majority of chaplains could no longer be hidden.

Indeed, the conflict prompted rare written protests from the Catholic  and Protestant chaplain endorsing agencies that supply the vast majority of chaplain candidates to the armed forces.

Their protest resonates with the spirit of the four sacrificial chaplains who were willing to serve whatever the cost, reserving only one thing:  “Chaplains have a tremendous moral responsibility to insure that when they preach, teach or counsel, they do so in accordance with their conscience and in harmony with the faith group by which they are endorsed.”

Bluntly put, chaplains cannot and will not sacrifice Christian truths at the altar of President Obama’s sexual politics—a reality that the President had fair warning of.  Now that the warning is becoming reality, Congress must act to protect the faithful service of the Chaplains, lest the military find itself on the wrong side of history in a war of morals.  Do your part and let your Senators and Representatives know of the endorsing agencies’ concerns while there is still time to act!

Visit “Faith Under Fire” to learn more about how the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” threatens religious liberty.


ADF Senior VP; Senior Counsel Gary McCaleb writes:

A half a century ago, the United States lent a hand to the struggling nation of South Vietnam as its freedom was threatened by the Communist North Vietnamese regime and its Viet Cong allies. But by the mid-70s, the war whimpered to defeat: radical leftists won the day and the so-called “peace” movement forced American withdrawal and the inevitable, bloody collapse of South Vietnam.

Tens of thousands were slaughtered and more imprisoned in “re-education camps” as victorious Communists spread their brand of “freedom” through the land. And at the same time, thousands of freedom-loving South Vietnamese fled the country.

Most fled by boat, in harrowing ventures across the open sea to an uncertain fate—all the more uncertain as would-be host nations often turned back the “boat people,” or made their lives intentionally miserable to discourage others.

Among those refuges was 10-year-old Viet D. Dinh, who, through Providence and perseverance, found himself in America—and more amazingly, not living from hand to mouth but serving his new homeland as the senior partner in the esteemed firm of Bancroft Associates.

So what does a former “boat boy” turned attorney have to do with saving marriage? The answer is rooted in President Obama’s flip-flop on marriage, where he abandoned his campaign promises and decided that marriage between one man and one woman is somehow unconstitutional—then told the Department of Justice stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act. In response, the House of Representatives acted to defend DOMA itself.

To that end, House leaders hired Paul Clement, a noted Supreme Court lawyer at the “big law” firm of King and Spalding, to present the case for marriage in court.  But within a few days, homosexual activists leaned on the firm so hard that it turned tail and bailed out of the case.

But Mr. Clement did not flee with his firm. Instead, he resigned his position so that he may continue to represent the House and give voice to the pro-marriage arguments. And he did so as firmly as he did graciously, in a letter of resignation that profiles moral courage.

But a lawyer alone is still a lawyer alone. On a case like this, he needs help—a host of professional colleagues—with whom to go to war.

And with delicious, made-in-America irony, it was a refugee from the war lost by the American left—Mr. Viet D. Dinh—who welcomed Paul Clement to Bancroft Associates—who will be his “band of brothers” in this battle against the left’s effort to redefine marriage.

ADF commends Paul for his principled decision, and honors Mr. Dinh for enabling the defense of marriage—that unique bonding of a man and a woman, hopefully for life, that provides the procreative potential and nurturing that undergirds every civilization. Defending marriage is a high calling—and it certainly looks like the best and brightest have answered that call!

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ADF Senior Counsel Austin R. Nimocks writes:

For years, those who advocate for same-sex “marriage” in this country have employed a semi-unilateral approach with their advocacy—if you think that children need a mother and a father, or that marriage is the union of one man and one woman, then there’s something wrong with you. At every turn, they have attempted to shame Americans into jettisoning their basic beliefs about marriage, and at any cost, especially civility. Victims of these reprehensible attacks have included politicians, corporate America, educational institutions, churches, and even private citizens, many of which the Alliance Defense Fund has defended in court.

And, for years, the Alliance Defense Fund and our allies have warned that the agenda driving same-sex “marriage” in this country, if allowed to persist, will have devastating consequences to our freedoms of conscience, religious liberty, and speech. Case after case, the ADF defends both individuals and entities persecuted for merely believing that marriage is the union of one man and one woman, or that children do best when raised by the mother and father who brought them into the world. And even though there may be genuine, good-faith disagreements regarding these topics, we’re still free to disagree, right? After all, this is America, right? Birthplace of free speech? Home of religious freedom and conscience? Apparently not.

Once again, those who demand that same-sex “marriage” be the law of the land have taken their intimidation and narrow-mindedness to new heights. No longer, in their eyes, can we have a free and fair debate about this topic, and never has the intolerance of this ideology been more evident than last week. When the U.S. House of Representatives hired former Solicitor General Paul Clement to defend the Federal Defense of Marriage Act in federal court, the viciousness of the attacks upon both General Clement and his law firm were unprecedented. One press release said that Clement’s firm’s “defense of the Defense of Marriage Act [is] a shameful stain on the firm’s reputation.” Those who believe that Federal DOMA is unconstitutional could not muster even one single professional remark about Paul Clement, his esteemed reputation as a Supreme Court advocate, or as one of our country’s finest modern day solicitor generals. All they could manage was “shame,” acrimony, and prejudice.

Really? It’s “shameful” to believe that children need both a mother and a father? It’s “shameful” to believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman? If this type of abhorrent attitude is disturbing to you, you’re not alone. Regardless of how you feel about same-sex “marriage,” do you really believe that this is how people who merely hold different ideas should be treated?

And not surprisingly, the venom spewed at Clement’s firm impacted its central nervous system, causing a shutdown and the hysterical severing of its agreement to defend Federal DOMA. This placed Mr. Clement in an uncompromising position, having already made a commitment to a client. Thus, we can now add to the list of victims created by the dogmatism of same-sex “marriage” advocates a former solicitor general, and one of the finest legal minds of our time. Fortunately, Mr. Clement would not be intimidated by those who sought to “shame” him for his decision to assist the House of Representatives in standing up for a bill that it enacted by an 84% margin. He found a new home and intends to continue his defense of marriage.

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Buried at the bottom of an otherwise predictable “angry conservatives” piece (that actually opens with the words “Angry conservatives…”) written following the announcement from Attorney General Eric Holder that the Department of Justice would no longer defend the Federal Defense of Marriage Act, was a curious nugget from one of the leading agitators for the destruction of marriage.

AP: Gay marriage looms big in 2012

Jon Davidson, legal director of the gay-rights group Lambda Legal, questioned whether that would have much impact on the 2012 presidential race.

“People who feel strongly that same-sex couples should not be allowed to marry were not going to vote for President Obama anyway,” he said.

A bit of wishful thinking, or willful blindness, we’d have to say.

Mr. Davidson is well aware of these numbers from 2008, but allow us to remind him:

President Obama took 61% of the California vote to Sen. McCain’s 37%.

Proposition 8, California’s state constitutional marriage protection amendment, cruised to a comfortable 52.24%-47.76% win.

The math isn’t all that hard. The fact is, plenty of folks who voted for then-candidate Obama also voted to restore the definition of marriage in deep-Blue California.

A more accurate rendering of reality comes from ADF Senior Legal Counsel Austin R. Nimocks.

ADF: ADF statement in response to DOJ letter on Defense of Marriage Act

“Marriage is a unifying issue in America. The federal Defense of Marriage Act reflects the reality that 90 percent of states protect marriage and that the citizens in those states believe in marriage as a union only between one man and one woman. Tragically, the Department of Justice has chosen to appease a small–but vocal and wealthy–constituency and abandon its duty to the people.”

The truth is, no matter how many times we are lectured on the “inevitability” of counterfeit same-sex “marriage,” every time the American people have the opportunity to stand up for marriage, we do. More often than not, the results, at the only polls that really matter, are overwhelming…whether the anti-marriage forces “like it or not.”

More likely than the ho-hum response some dream of to the DOJ action, is what ADF attorney Jim Campbell says in the lead quote in the AP piece:

“The ripple effect nationwide will be to galvanize supporters of marriage,” said staff counsel Jim Campbell of the Alliance Defense Fund, a conservative legal group.

AP: Church group blasts Obama for abandoning Defense of Marriage Act

A coalition of 34,000 black churches is blasting President Barack Obama’s decision to stop defending the federal law that bans recognition of gay marriage.

The Rev. Anthony Evans, who heads the National Black Church Initiative, says Obama “has violated the Christian faith” by failing to uphold Jesus’ teaching that marriage is between a man and a woman.

Catholic voters tilted 54%-45% for President Obama in 2008, but the US Bishops issued the following statement: USCCB Decries Refusal to Support Defense of Marriage Act

Hard to imagine that Mr. Davidson is right and Mr. Campbell is wrong about this one.

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