Basically, some of fellow Southerners couldn't deal
with the fact of a gay serviceman. You see this in the Army too. I've
heart some right-wing crackpots in my very own unit talking about how
they don't understand why the Army would need DADT because, of
course, no queer would ever want to do anything to help America. So I'm
standing there and, yeah, I might get beaten to death if I respond
the way I want to, so I just stay quiet. And I fucking hate that. When
this shit is over. When I get the Army's chain off from around my neck,
oh friends, people are going to know what a god damned
queer was willing to do for them.
That Marine (who's name was left out of the article,
I notice) was fighting for truth. The truth is, we queers are just as
good and as bad an anyone else. And our work, our toil, does just as
much good for this world as yours or anybody else'.
was written back in 1991, 18 years ago if you can believe (I certainly
am a little incredulous). In 18 years, almost nothing has changed in
America. Through three presidents, we're almost in exactly the same
mess. Now certainly, the world is always changing slightly,
but essentially we're in the very same mess now that we were 18 years
ago. We're in a recession, we've got folks stuck in Iraq, and America
is more or less lost in the sauce.
Right there in the last
few months of the presidential campaign last year, there seemed to be
the kind of activism, the desire for a better world, the
understanding that a common effort could result in common good coming
from both side of the political spectrum. People started playing those
old songs form the 60's again, started playing them un-ironically. For a
moment there were people marching the in the street, the fortunate sons
were out in mass, and the times, they were a'changing. Then, a year
later, we're really in pretty much the same place we were a year ago.
We're still struggling with that same basic moral questions, not even
about what's right, but rather, "Is it ok to say something's wrong, or
is it un-American to hope for a better world? Is it un-American to be
afraid of moving? Can right be done under the sun?"
acting 99% exactly like Bush. The election didn't mean anything,
really (except maybe it kept things from getting worse, maybe. And
maybe it changed what could be done in the future). So, the kind of frustration the writer of that article feels, I get that.
I love this country, as screwy as it can be. It's full of people, and
Christ is working on them day by day, and maybe that means something
Well Dear Reader, I've decided something: I actually prefer the chaplain in my unit, that venomous Evangelical, to the other sort of the chaplain I've seen,
the weak willed and lukewarm, Spiritual Care Plan who recite nothings.
Sure, my chaplain may be a devil who hates people for their
sexuality and gender, but at least he means it. At least he isn't worshiping his job.
These other chaplains, they got nothing, nothing except devotion to the Army.
they wear crosses on their uniforms, they make no effort to worship
Christ or the God of Christ. Instead, they worship of the god of the
Army. Now, before you go getting excited, I have to tell you this: the
god of the Army is no where near as interesting as Ares, Mars, or Tyr. Instead, this god is nothing but a cheap knock off of the blandest
understanding of a monotheistic god.
Apparently, the Army god asks nothing of us other than to buck
up and follow our leaders. The Army god has no wisdom and no love of
justice. It does not point to any kind of goodness and it doesn't tell you to
act right. It doesn't love, doesn't hate, doesn't enforce, doesn't
subvert, doesn't sow, doesn't reap, don't nothing. Nothing. Not the
vaguest hint of holiness or anything beyond the common, ugly, and
small. It is an empty word, a place holder for the saddest
indoctrination of the...and I can hardly write this without grimacing...the "Core Army Values."
The Core Army Values are, of course, Loyalty (only to the Army),
Duty (to the Army), Respect (of the Army), Selfless Service (of the Army),
Honor (obtained through serving the Army), Integrity (do I need to say
it), and Personal Courage (you get the picture).
Basically, the ultimate virtue in the Army is
doing what you're told. Most Christian chaplains have had no problem completely
shedding their loyalty to that homeless Jewish fellow who
got crucified. They've lost all feeling for that fellow who, after he fed five thousand, ran away when the people tried to make him king 'cause they just
didn't get it.
The chaplains instead worship the Army. They call
it god and hope that their soldiers are too stupid to know the
difference. But friends, we are not. We get what the deal is.