The chief of The Center for Military Preparedness says the reaction to her testimony before a congressional hearing has proven her point: That allowing open homosexuality in the U.S. military will create an atmosphere of intense persecution for those who disagree with the lifestyle.
Further, it would damage the military’s morale, handicap its capabilities and deprive it of thousands of good service members, Elaine Donnelly told WND.
She was reacting to the recent hearing before the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel and committee chief U.S. Rep. Susan Davis, D-Calif.
Robert Knight of the Culture and Media Institute described the hearing like this: “Surrounded by hostile faces in the gallery, hostile faces of the liberal congressmen who dominated the ‘hearing,’ and the skeptical faces of reporters from liberal media, Mrs. Donnelly listened stoically while other witnesses trashed her personally during their testimony. Because of the rules, she was not able to respond until called late in the proceedings for her own testimony.”
At issue was the 1993 imposition by President Bill Clinton of the so-called “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy that allows homosexuals who did not publicly announce their homosexuality to participate in the U.S. military even though the underlying law still banned it.
Congress now is on a campaign to correct such “rights” violations and is considering changing the law.
But according to reports, Donnelly’s invited testimony was met with derisive comments about her objections to homosexuals in the military.
Donnelly said the reaction simply confirmed her premise.
“Show me members of Congress who verbally abuse witnesses testifying before them, and I will show you a group of liberals doing everything they can to prevent the witnesses from being heard,” she said.
“My mission as an invited witness was to defend the 1993 statute that Congress actually passed, which states that homosexuals are not eligible to serve in the military,” she said. “Accompanying me was Brian Jones, a retired sergeant major of the U.S. Army’s elite Delta Force.
“We did our best to present testimony on the consequences of repealing that law, and our statements are on the record. We had difficulty being heard, however, because liberal members of the committee avoided relevant issues by attacking our motives and asking absurd questions,” she said.
She continued, “The barrage of personal insults and diversionary insinuations, ironically, served to prove my point. If the 1993 law is repealed:
- “The new policy will be forced cohabitation with homosexuals, 24/7, in all military communities, including Army and Marine infantry battalions, Special Operations Forces, Navy SEALS, and all the ships at sea, including submarines. This would be tantamount to forcing female soldiers to cohabit with men in intimate quarters, 24/7, with no recourse but to leave or avoid the military all together.
- “Taking the ‘civil rights’ argument to its logical, misguided conclusion, the military will be required to give special rights to professed (not discreet) homosexuals, and enforce a corollary policy of ‘zero tolerance’ of anyone who disagrees. The military does not do things halfway. Commanders will not be able to improve the situation, since they might be accused of ‘intolerance’ themselves.
- “Current incidents of sexual misconduct involving men and women will be increased three-fold, to include male/male and female/female issues.
- “To make the new policy ‘work,’ valuable training time will be diverted to ‘diversity’ training reflecting the attitudes of civilian gay activist groups. This training will attempt to overcome the normal human desire for modesty and privacy in sexual matters – a quest that is inappropriate for the military and unlikely to succeed.
- “Any complaints about inappropriate passive/aggressive actions conveying a homosexual message or approach, short of physical touching and assault, will be met with career-killing presumptions about the motives of the person who complains: bigotry, homophobia, racism, or worse. As a result, untold thousands of people to leave or avoid the all-volunteer force.”
Tommy Sears, the executive director for the center, agreed.
“It quickly deteriorated into a show hearing that would have made Stalin proud,” he wrote. “Elaine and Sgt. Major Jones gave their opening statements, and shortly the rout was on. The Democrats’ tactic was to ask a lengthy question (which more times than not turned into a polemic against Elaine), expending much if not all of their allotted time. Any time left for a response from Elaine or Sgt. Maj. Jones was of little consequence, as they were cut off or shouted down by congressmen or congresswomen who then would launch into another mini-speech.”
He said members of Congress clearly intended to “demonize as morally repugnant (bigoted, homophobic, or worse) anyone who dared disagree with the Democrats’ and homosexual activists’ point of view.”
Sears said, “Since the hearing, staff and other regular observers of Congress have commented to me that Wednesday’s session was the shoddiest display of decorum, particularly on the House Armed Services Committee, that they had ever seen.”
“Particularly capricious was Rep. Vic Snyder, D-Ark.,” Sears said. “I found outrageous his gratuitous comments with regard to Elaine’s submitted testimony and motives. He insinuated that had Congressman [Barney] Frank been there, Elaine would find his presence objectionable because Frank would ‘sexualize the atmosphere.’ Snyder’s sarcastic manner and interruption of Elaine’s answer made it difficult for her to counter with the obvious – members of Congress do not cohabit with Barney Frank.
“Chris Shays, R-Conn., showed up, even though he is not a member of the committee. He tried very hard to get Elaine to say something – anything – personally critical of the female Navy captain who was there. When she refused to do that and said she was there to discuss public policy, he began demagoguing Elaine, her testimony, and her arguments,” Sears said.
One woman even asked: “Mrs. Donnelly, when did you realize that you were a heterosexual?
But Sears said such behavior provides congressional documentation for Donnelly’s point: If the ban on homosexuals in the military is repealed and people are subjected to passive/aggressive behavior that sexualizes the military’s no-privacy atmosphere, anyone who “objects” will be condemned for “homophobia” or worse.
“So no one will complain. They will just leave – or avoid the military in the first place. As a result, the military will lose thousands of good people,” Sears said.
Knight said Donnelly kept her cool throughout and “carefully laid out the case for the law that Congress passed in 1993 and which has been upheld by multiple courts.”
He also explained he’s seen that kind of behavior before.
“A few years ago I was debating the topic of ‘gay marriage’ at an Ivy League college with a prominent lesbian activist. At one point, she lost her cool, got off message and started loudly denouncing the Bush Administration’s Iraq policies and people like me. Finally, the moderator reined her in. I never raised my voice. I stayed on point. Afterward, when we talked in a student lounge, she exclaimed that she didn’t know what had happened, but that ‘both of us just started yelling at each other.’ No, she had been yelling at me. She projected her anger on to me, which is something I see certain gay activists doing quite often, accusing their opponents of hate where there is none.
“This is what military personnel who oppose homosexuality as immoral can expect to face in a new climate of politically correct enforcement of pro-homosexual sentiments if the ban is lifted,” Knight said.
Donnelly told WND the behavior of the committee simply was unprofessional and rude.
“The one good thing that may come out of this hearing; it remains to be seen whether the responsible members of the committee will understand the behavior, the treatment I received is exactly the kind of presumption of motive gays in the military will cause,” she said.