Should same-sex marriages be allowed on military bases?
Ceremony in Louisiana sparks controversy
- Duration 5:17
- Date Jun 10, 2012
Ceremony in Louisiana sparks controversy
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Insects commitment ceremony on a military base in Louisiana some in congress are speaking out saying it never should have been allowed to happen.
Here for fair and balanced debate our congressman -- Aiken a Republican from Missouri and -- -- -- executive director of the service members legal defense network.
-- -- Thank you.
-- accomplished a majority of congressman all star with you glad this wasn't a marriage ceremony everybody involved -- it was a commitment ceremony they realize it's not legal and they're not trying to pass it off as illegal ceremony.
So what is your objection.
Well -- several first of all the military said that they -- gonna change your policy.
And they are going to have same sex marriages but only in the states that allow of course Louisiana does not allow it.
So first of all the military is changing what they told us -- military leadership.
And a second of all what your doing is you're up creating something that's really marriage and try to get around the definition of what marriage yes.
And done so also that the third point that's particularly important and that is that this is -- violation.
A federal law which is dull -- at the time this was -- this was a straight violation of Belmont.
And to have military chaplains on military property are doing this kind of thing were upset about that because it's a violation of law.
All right -- -- why do you think it should be allowed to -- -- and do you know anything about whether this couple in particular was trying to.
Make a point by holding this important ceremony on a military base.
Well first so I couldn't hear all the congressman's arguments but let's look at the facts.
There was no gay marriage there was no gay civil union performed by military chaplain at fort port -- at Fort Polk.
Not this was too.
Who wanted to stand together and receive the blessing.
From the -- This chaplain is very serious -- -- he's very committed to his all of his parishioners.
This ceremony it was performed under the dictates.
Of the sponsoring.
Should be commended he should not be.
Criticized in the fashion that is taking place.
He was simply responding to one of his -- parishioners who asks that this relationship.
People -- it was a humble blessing by a chaplain.
This was not at odds with the DOD regulations.
-- The use of facilities.
On a military installation.
Are made without regard to religion.
Our sexual orientation.
Or color and there should be no exception here.
That no -- and it exists.
What I wanna I wanna make sure that we bring in this the point it's very important to both of you -- in this argument congressman making you have sponsored a measure that would actually.
You know if if it were expected in the ultimate on defense appropriations bill and and with the Senate's.
-- -- would have to get on board with this as well he tried this in the past.
A ban on these types of ceremonies.
On military bases -- what do you think are your odds of success in this time around and offering up.
Well we offered that amendment last year and and a different person offered it this year just explaining what noble means bill that says that for anything that's part of the federal government.
That marriages only between one man and one -- The bad but I have this year is a little bit different and it's giving.
First amendment rights to chaplains and service members.
So that they are not required or not discriminated against for not performing same sex marriages.
Or for service members to have opinions or even speak -- opinion.
About this subject it's obviously controversial.
And First Amendment says you have a right to free speech and hold your opinion.
We also believe -- obviously that the chaplain.
Should be able to -- operate under the dictates of their own conscience and consistently with a particular denomination.
That placed them.
In the military mr.
-- and -- Precisely what happened here.
This chaplain was.
Performing a ceremony under the dictates.
Of his sponsoring religious.
Pressured the chaplain to perform the ceremony what you're proposing.
Would infringe upon the religious freedom.
Of this Chaplin and service members this is dull month plus and frankly.
I'm not quite sure where this -- appearance.
Which you also place a limitation upon a Chaplin.
Doing the funeral services of the gay or lesbian service member.
Killed in Afghanistan.
And the spells asked for that -- -- -- -- recited at the funeral service and a military chaplain.
This is folly and it is also dangerous.
This is an infringement upon the religious expression and freedom of the military -- and the service -- gentlemen.
We're gonna have to leave it there we think you both for weighing in on this very important debate we appreciate your time today.