Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend 1 (1 Shares)  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites View Stats   1 comment

OpEdNews Op Eds

Santorum Continues Bashing Gays in the Military While Ignoring a Real Threat

By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 1 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H3 2/22/10

Become a Fan
  (20 fans)
Even though we the people of Pennsylvania finally voted ultra-conservative Republican Rick Santorum out of the U.S. Senate in 2006 in favor of moderate Democrat Bob Casey, Mr. Man-on-Dog continues to find new platforms from which to spew his senseless hatred and fear of gays and lesbians.

Not surprisingly, Santorum turned up at the recent Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) and preached to the choir about the alleged dangers of allowing gays to openly serve in the military. Dismissing the support of military leaders for repealing Don't Ask Don't Tell (DADT), Santorum explained that they had been so "indoctrinated" with political correctness that they can no longer "see straight," as Sam Stein reported in the Huffington Post. (Note: I have no idea whether "see straight" was an intentional pun, but I suspect it was not.)

Santorum told the CPAC crowd that repealing DADT would "sap the readiness and effectiveness of the armed forces," paraphrased Stein. But this makes no sense.

Santorum's claims are easily contradicted by the fact that a considerable majority of military personnel favor a repeal of DADT. According to a 2006 Zogby poll of military personnel who have served in Iraq or Afghanistan or related combat roles, 73 percent said they were comfortable interacting with gays and lesbians, and only 19 percent (less than 1 in 5) said they were uncomfortable. So, since Santorum never bothered to serve in the military himself, maybe we should give more credence to those who actually did.

So what motivates Santorum's fear of gays? Does he believe that every homosexual is going to be leering at all his straight colleagues and trying to "convert" them to the "gay lifestyle"? Does he not realize that it doesn't work that way?

Maybe he should instead be more concerned with the fact that -- unlike their gay colleagues -- so many straight men in the military sexually abuse their female colleagues. In fact, statistically speaking, the gays in the military have much better self control.

And, since reports suggest that a vast majority of sexual abuse cases against military women by their straight male colleagues go unpunished, perhaps Santorum's time would be better spent addressing this very real sexual threat. After all, wouldn't this sort of unwelcome man-on-woman activity itself tend to "sap the readiness and effectiveness of the armed forces?"

Of course, homophobia and misogyny so often go hand-in-hand, and Santorum has never been much of a champion for the feminist cause.

So Santorum remains intently focused on the gays. He really seems to be obsessed with the gays.

All facts considered, I can only conclude that Santorum's anti-gay crusade is driven by little more than plain old-fashioned bigotry. And bigotry is not a valid base on which this nation -- or its military -- should be governed.

 

Mary Shaw is a Philadelphia-based writer and activist, with a focus on politics, human rights, and social justice. She is a former Philadelphia Area Coordinator for the Nobel-Prize-winning human rights group Amnesty International, and her views (more...)
 

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon

Go To Commenting
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Follow Me on Twitter

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

No Excuse for Racial Profiling

No, Dan, America is Not a Christian Nation

Tea Party Talking Points, Translated

The Myth of the Christian Right

They Still Cling to Guns and Religion

Racism Then and Now

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
1 people are discussing this page, with 1 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)

Tolerance by conservatives like Santorum is a very... by Walter Barton on Sunday, Feb 28, 2010 at 11:56:18 AM