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Differing on defense

"Differing on defense" Continued...

As the Senate now finalizes its version of the defense-spending bill, groups like The Secular Coalition for America are lobbying that the religious conscience clause protections not be included. The coalition argues that the amendments would lead to harassment of the gay and lesbian military community.

But Rep. Palazzo, while promoting his amendment protecting chapels from hosting same-sex union ceremonies during committee debates, argued that the Defense Department facilities are federal property so they already fall under the jurisdiction of DOMA.

"The Defense of Marriage Act was clear in defining marriage for purposes of the federal government," Palazzo said. "This amendment does nothing else but clarify for the Department of Defense that this standard should be upheld on military bases."

Edward Lee Pitts
Edward Lee Pitts

Lee teaches journalism at Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa, and is the associate dean of the World Journalism Institute.


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