Thursday, January 15, 2009

Obama supports the openly gay in the military

Obama said during his campaign that he supported ending the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy of the Clinton administartion. Effectively, the Clinton policy would not evict homosexuals if they did not reveal their orientation, and military personnel could not ask a military person about their orientation.

Clinton made this policy change one of the very first acts of his administration, angering social conservatives and immediately polarizing the country. It fed into every fear that social conservatives had about the social agenda that Clinton might impose on the country. Political observers noted that the timing of this at the least was not a wise political move.

Obama has been studying presidential transition, and he has been seeking to avoid some of the mistakes of past transition teams. This is why I am surprised that his adminstration is talking about this issue and signaling that he will support openly gay people in the military.

On economic issues, Obama has been trying to appeal to conversatives, putting in signicant tax cuts into his economic stimulus package. And talk on this issue right now may have not been his intent, since his administration is refusing to talk any more about it at the moment. But I am surprised that either by design or accident that his team has forecast this change in military policy.

I am the first to say that we need to treat people with love and respect, including homosexuals. And I am the first to say that we cannot depend upon laws to enforce morality. In fact once support for a law falls below 50%, it is basically unenforceable.

However, I must say that this issue bothers me. The military does not support this measure. The courts have upheld the constitutionality of not allowing those who are openly gay to serve in the military. The only reason this is being done is to support a leftist social agenda. Read this news report.

Support for President Bush is at dreadful levels, even among conservatives. But they will soon miss his stand on social issues.

What are your thoughts on this issue?


Anonymous said...

This is another case of the chipping away at the moral core of our country. We as Christians need to stand for Biblical principles in a courteous yet strong way. If you stand for nothing, you will accept anything.

James said...

I agree that we should stand for biblical principles. The question is, do we seek to touch people's hearts and convert them to Christ and his teachings, or do we seek to pass laws that enforce his teachings?

Anonymous said...

I have many thoughts on this issue that lead to many other thoughts, thoughts on how did we get here.

Does the specific issue of gays in the military ‘cause’ moral decline? NO. It is a symptom or indication of the moral decline that has already taken place.

Laws do not cause moral decline or moral excellence and as you implied, we cannot hope to enforce the teachings of our God by passing laws. But the laws we do pass are an indication of where we are morally. Some dilute morality and others encourage it. Each new one has a cumulative effect and is an indicator of the moral climate of our country. When bad laws are not effectively challenged, the decline escalates. One that comes to mind is no-fault divorce. Some may not realize that before 1970 in California (and 1977 nation-wide) it was not possible to obtain a divorce without “cause”, usually adultery or abandonment. The change in the law was a reflection of a change in society. The same is true with abortion, and now homosexuality.

Hollywood, the media, lawmakers, educators, activists, etc are not to ‘blame’. We, the people of God, are to blame for sitting in silence until Satan has won over a majority - slowly but steadily over the last few decades. With God’s support and strength and encouragement, we, the people who are followers of Christ, can do our part to reverse the damage that Satan has engineered. We CAN make a difference.

HOWEVER, Christians must have a change of heart. Too many of us, in effect, have supported our country’s moral decline with our silence, with our tolerant attitudes, with our choices of entertainment, clothing, vocabulary, and behavior. ( Have we actually crossed over into the ‘world’ and don’t even realize it?) We must each set our own house in order before we can affect the world. We don't have to be "perfect", but we must match our 'walk' to our 'talk'. And we must let go of the incorrect notion that teaching against sin is being judgmental. It is not.

Let us all begin right now to pray fervently for “change” - not the change that our soon-to-be new president campaigned for, but for a change in the hearts and minds of Christians everywhere, that we might once again become an influence in our world that will change people’s lives in the only way that really matters. Let us love God first and then our neighbor, remembering that love is an action, not a feeling.

Please hear these words in the spirit of love and reflection that they are offered.

Anonymous said...

I doubt that Jesus would have commended a "don't ask don't tell" policy in any realm - he wasn't much into hypocrisy.

James said...

To our first anonymous friend (by the way, I encourage everyone here to register--it only takes a few seconds), I agree that we need to take stands on moral issues. The question is, when, where, and how?

Do we talk about morality to non-believers before talking about Christ?

Do we take a stand within our own congregations as our primary audience--or do we make non-Christians the ones that we are to make stands against?

Does our taking a stand mean speaking out, or does it mean passing laws?