For men and women who’ve voluntarily joined an organization that demands (legally) blind obedience and counsels its minions to “Embrace the Suck,” American military personnel can be surprisingly pushy about getting official approval of their unorthodox lifestyle quirks.
The divisive campaign to repeal “don’t ask, don’t tell” is merely the most famous example. In the midst of two shooting wars, Wiccan soldiers fought for—and got—their five-pointed star added to the list of 38 (!) “emblems of belief” already allowed on Veterans Affairs grave markers. This raises the disturbing prospect that one day Arlington National Cemetery will resemble nothing so much as a giant charm bracelet.
So when it was widely reported last week that “the Senate legalized bestiality in the Armed Forces,” I wondered how I’d missed hearing about this latest “minority rights” cause before.
As it turns out, the bestiality baby had simply been thrown out with the sodomy bath water when the Senate approved a defense bill that repealed Article 125 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, to wit:
(a) Any person subject to this chapter who engages in unnatural carnal copulation with another person of the same or opposite sex or with an animal is guilty of sodomy. Penetration, however slight, is sufficient to complete the offense.
(b) Any person found guilty of sodomy shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.
“It’s all about using the military to advance this administration’s radical social agenda,” declared the unfortunately named Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council (FRC), whose Christian News Service broke the story.
America’s bloggers left and right were briefly united in their efforts to wring some humor out of this story—with underwhelming results, considering such promising material.
The conservative site DeathBy1000Papercuts noted, “This is the same bill that approved the military detention of U.S. citizens indefinitely. Left unreported: Can the military also detain U.S. animals without cause?”
“I’m not sure whether PETA approves or disapproves,” quipped fellow right-winger Wizbang, adding, “Mr. Ed could not be reached for comment.”
The liberal response was characteristically desperate and defensive. Blogger LezGetReal wrote archly, “It is interesting to note that the FRC has certainly not been lobbying the Washington DC legislature to make bestiality illegal in that state.” Note their use of the phrase “it is interesting” in that increasingly popular fashion—to denote its opposite.
Sandwiched between ads for Mandy Patinkin’s new Broadway show and another announcing “Tops & Bottoms Wanted [for] HIV Vaccine Study,” David Badash at TheNewCivilRightsMovement.com stamped his foot in inarticulate despair, filing his story under “Bigotry Watch.”
“How amazingly offensive are these people?” he wailed in the FRC’s general direction, signing off in a predictable one-word huff: “Hypocrisy.”
And that’s about it. This news story didn’t inspire anywhere near the level of tasteless ribaldry I was expecting. I am more accustomed to cracking bestiality jokes about those on “the other side”—not about American soldiers, sailors, and Marines. The annual Saudi Goat Beauty Pageant has provided my fellow racist warmongers with minutes of amusement. And I did manage “Death before dishonor!” after 450 sheep jumped off a cliff in Turkey back in 2005.
Like me, former Army Col. Bob Maginnis anticipated a tsunami of hilarity that never materialized. When CNS News contacted him about the bestiality repeal, Maginnis ordered a nation of jokers to smarten the hell up while inadvertently providing the week’s funniest lines:
When the reader stops laughing, the reader needs to ask the question whether or not this is in the best interests of the government, in the best interests of the military and the best interests of the country? I think not. If we have a soldier who engages in sodomy with an animal—whether a government animal or a non-government animal—is it, in fact, a chargeable offense under the Uniform Code? I think that’s in question. Soldiers, unfortunately, like it or not, have engaged in this type of behavior in the past. Will they in the future, if they remove this statute? I don’t know.
Hope that’s clear.
My biggest fear is that bestiality will now replace Satanism as the sin afflicting the shape-shifting lizards that conspiracy buffs claim are The Ones Really Running The WorldTM. Evidence of zoophilia in the Higher Echelons of Power, Inc.? Behold:
An official with the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention who was charged with two counts of child molestation and bestiality involving a 6-year-old has returned to work with the agency.
Bestiality at the CDC? A different kind of “experiment” with lab rats, perhaps? Details are not forthcoming.
Unlike the mainstreaming of pedophilia and furry fandom, I don’t foresee a similar trend developing with bestiality. One never hears about conventions of the (presumably extant) zoophilia “community.” Glee has yet to bravely unveil a minor beast-screwing character for our edification. Edward Albee’s The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia? won the Tony and the Drama Desk Award in 2002, but outrage over the play about a guy who cheats on his wife with a very different kind of nanny fizzled when it became obvious the piece was an exploration of the limits of “sophisticated” liberal tolerance.
I bet that before the decade is out, we’ll be adding a 39th “emblem of belief” to the VA’s list. I’ll leave it to others to speculate on what that symbol will look like.
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