The continued debate over homosexuality in the military is never ceasing, but a recent matrimonial ceremony held at Fork Polk, an army base in Louisiana, is sparking an intensified level of controversy.
Fox News' Todd Starnes has more about the lesbian nuptials that are creating an intense stir among politicians and traditional marriage advocates:
The ceremony was conducted about three weeks ago by a chaplain for the Disciples of Christ, according to Ron Crews, executive director for the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty.
“It was kept quiet,” Crews told Fox News Radio. He said the service was conducted in the military chapel, under the authorization of the chaplain’s denomination.
So if the same-sex ceremony was approved by the military – why the outrage?
“It raises the issue that Louisiana is a state that has a clear definition of marriage,” Crews said. “By allowing this on military installations, this means that chaplains in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq could conduct same sex ceremonies like this. How will this look to our coalition partners who do not approve of same sex unions?”
Last September, The Blaze covered the Pentagon's decision to allow gay marriages by military chaplains both inside and outside of chapels. While chaplains are not required to marry same-sex couples, the new regulations opened up the right for such actions to take place, should faith leaders so choose. Still, despite this proclamation, conservative leaders are infuriated by the decision to allow these weddings to take place.
"The liberal social experiment with our military continues," Rep. John Fleming (R-LA) said in an interview with Fox News Radio. "A same-sex marriage-like ceremony should not have occurred at Fort Polk, especially since the people of Louisiana have made it abundantly clear that our state does not recognize same-sex marriages or civil unions."
Others, like Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO), who created legislation that would ban gay marriages on military bases, agree.
"It’s outrageous and illegal," Atkin said. “This appears to be a case where political agenda has trumped the rule of law, which is absolutely unacceptable."
Fox News continues:
Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) accused the Dept. of Defense of lying to the American people.
“This happened despite last year’s assurances from the Department of Defense that state law recognized only traditional marriage would be respected and upheld,” Huelskamp said in a statement. “They clearly lied.”
Fleming said the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” has made incidents “like this inevitable.”
“My frustration is compounded by the fact that a social agenda, which has nothing to do with military readiness or our national defense, is being imposed on our men and women in uniform,” Fleming said. “This appears to be a promotion of an agenda utilizing military facilities. We don’t envision the purpose of the military to be a test tube for social changes in this country.”
While Crews' bill has been approved by the House, it has not yet been taken up by the Senate. He believes that passing the ban is the only way to ensure that bases do not become "sex orientation neutral." The main thrust of the debate seems to center upon Louisiana's overall aversion to same-sex marriage -- something that critics have cited in the outrage over the marriage ceremony.
Read more about the dilemma over at Fox News.