Monday, May 09, 2011

US Navy okays on-base same-sex marriages

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United States Navy Chaplain Corps seal
US Navy Chaplain Corps

Here’s a bit of great news in the process of repealing the discriminatory effects of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”: The US Navy has released a memo to Navy chaplains allowing them to perform same-sex weddings on bases in states that have already legalized gay marriage. As Lez Get Real reports:

The changes came in the form of an April 13 advisory memo issued to all chaplains which said the Chaplain Corps was revising its Tier I DADT Repeal training manuals, which had previously indicated that same-sex marriages are not authorized on federal property.

Citing “additional legal review” by Navy attorneys, the Chief of Navy Chaplains, Admiral Michael Tidd said the Navy “has concluded that, generally speaking, base facility use is sexual orientation neutral.”

“If the base is located in a state where same-sex marriage is legal, then the base facilities may be used to celebrate the marriage,” added Tidd.

The admiral’s memo also gives Navy chaplains permission to marry same-sex couples – but would not force them to perform ceremonies if those ceremonies are not within the chaplains religious beliefs.

Keep that last bit in mind for whenever some right-wing ideologue pipes up about how teh gheys just wanna violate chaplains’ religious freedom or some similar nonsense. It’s bound to come up before long.

(via Joe. My. God.)