Washington (CNN) - As lawmakers consider a compromise plan to repeal "don't ask, don't tell," a prominent conservative group is arguing that overturning the policy against gays in the military will increase "homosexual misconduct" - even "sexual bullying, male rape, and forcible sodomy" – in the armed services.
On Wednesday, the Family Research Council held a conference call with reporters featuring retired military leaders and officials from the conservative group.
Senior Fellow for Policy Studies Peter Sprigg argued that publicly available information from the Pentagon on sexual assaults in the military, along with other information, proves that the military currently has a problem with "homosexual misconduct."
"Homosexuals in the military are three times more likely to commit sexual assaults than heterosexuals are, relative to their numbers," Sprigg said. "We believe this problem would only increase if the current law against homosexuality in the military, which was enacted in 1993, were to be repealed."
Sprigg referenced a report he authored which argued that if the law is overturned, more gays will join the military, thereby causing more assaults. The report also said gays will violate military regulations without fear of being discharged, and that victims will be afraid of reporting assaults by gays.
Retired Col. Richard Black, who previously served in the Pentagon, went even further, using graphic language to suggest what might happen if the "don't ask, don't tell" policy were repealed.
"It's a question of whether we will force soldiers to bond with homosexuals in the showers and the barracks, knowing that doing so will result in sexual bullying, male rape, and forcible sodomy," Black said. "There's a reason that we don't make men and women shower together. And for the same reason, we must not force men to shower with homosexuals – it simply does not work."
A prominent gay and lesbian advocacy group vehemently disagrees.
The Human Rights Campaign is actively campaigning for the repeal of the military policy. The group's website calls it a "failed law" and cites support for its repeal from Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Joint Chiefs Chairman Admiral Michael Mullen.
"Americans recognize that on the battlefield, it does not matter whether a soldier is lesbian, gay or straight; what matters is that a soldier gets the job done," HRC's website states. "This discriminatory law hurts military readiness and national security while putting American soldiers fighting overseas at risk."
HRC also attacks the notion that harassment by gays will increase if the military policy is repealed.
"This legislation will not lead to increased harassment or claims of discrimination. Repealing DADT will only ensure that lesbian and gay service members are treated equally. The bill permits the U.S. military to prescribe and enforce conduct regulations as long as they are designed and applied without regard to sexual orientation," the HRC website states.
A recent CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll shows that 78-percent of Americans say that openly gay people should be allowed to serve in the military, while just 20 percent say they should not be allowed to openly serve.
PS: NEWS FLASH!!! Their showering and working with them NOW!...Beau Colby
Hey, if the straight folks in the military can't protect their cornhole from the apparently evil mass-raping gays what good are they going to do protecting our country from terrorists? Let's be realistic... if they repeal DADT the people that are going to be targeted for victimization are NOT the straight soldiers.
Guess what! These EXACT arguments were used for decades to keep women out of the military! Guess what! All those WIDESPREAD sexual abuses did NOT happen! Maybe these conservatives are just thinking about sex too much themselves!
It is only important to "Pale" around with pages when the conservatives do it. They are all homesexuals hiding in a closet, but they rub their feet together.
There is no reason for homosexuals to be any different then, than they are now; it's the armed services for crying out loud. That will never happen in this day and age, when information is light speed.
Yes, I'm sure it is more damaging to have homosexual be honest about their sexuality in the military than dismissing dozens of intelligence translators preventing attacks to begin with...
Homosexual assaults in the military will increase? Why? Is that because FRC co-founder and fan of Rentboys George Rekers will be enlisting? The FRC is a hate group plain and simple.
Good grief. I cannot believe this is a fight still being waged in 2010. It's time to grow up folks. No one is requiring that all soldiers be gay. And sexual relations in the field between unmarried straight soldiers is really frowned on – why would allowing all Americans physically and mentally qualified to serve mean that there would be a sanctioned gay orgy in every foxhole.
Does anyone remember Tailhook, when a bunch of Naval aviators sexually harassed anyone in the building where their convention took place?
I knew plenty of women on active duty who dealt with sexual bullying, sexual assault and rape. I have no doubt that it's an ongoing problem.
If they want to prevent those types of activities, maybe the Family Research Council should advocate preventing heterosexual males from serving in the military.
HOW can you tell if it is a high rate "relative to their numbers" when you don't KNOW how many homosexual people are in the military? That is the point of Don't Ask Don't Tell...YOU DON'T KNOW!
Give me a break. Fear, fear and more fear. That's all we get from Conservatives.
most men who commit sexual assault against other men identify as heterosexual. rape is about power and control, not about being sexually attracted to someone. in fact, homosexuals are at a higher risk of being assaulted by heterosexuals due to homophobia. the FRC is disgusting and any media that picks this story up without busting these horrendous myths is too for that matter.
He is just being Joe. I think that he may have told the truth but he wasn't aware of it.
All bigotry aside, there is a simple way to deal with this issue. It is enforced in the American workplace and in foreign militaries that include sexual minorites: no sexual harassment will be tolerated. Simple. You don't point a gun at a fellow soldier and you don't sexually harass one as well. Period. Are we done, finally with bigotry in the United States Armed Forces?
Boise, Idaho USA
The timing is about right for this to come up, given that major elections are in Nov. I guess these guys have worn out the routine of recruiting gay men and/or women, apparently some with compensation, to apply for marriage licenses in states where there is no chance of getting one, just to rile up conservatives and liberals alike, in battleground states. This election cycle, they obviously intend to move the attention away from the major issues to get the conservatives out to vote. Next step will likely be for the legislature in a battleground state to pass a law limiting women's rights to abortions. The law will obviously be struck down as unconstitutional by the courts, but well after the elections and after its effectiveness as a smokescreen ends. We Americans obviously are pretty gullible as these tactics thought up by PR pros keep working.
The last time we heard from a "Senior Fellow" from the FRC, it was George Rekers, who two weeks ago was trying to explain why he took a male prostitute on a tour of Europe. So, by Sprigg's own logic, since a FRC Senior Fellow is known to solicit male prostitutes, I should assume that he is predisposed to hire male prostitutes...
This is just ridiculous. This is why 78% of the American public are in favor of the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell – because twisted and deceptive "logic" from raving bigots like Sprigg don't sway a single thinking person.
The Family Research Council seems to be a hate group and homofobic.
Did they know that the majority of men that are sexually assaulted every year are by men who claim to be heterosexual not gay?
Where exactly and how was this so called study done, in a prison? If so, are they comparing our members of the armed forces to prisoners? This group is just plain nuts.
Vote NO in NOvember to the party of NO.
More hate, fear, and lies from a Conservative organization. I'm shocked...SHOCKED! How could this be? Oh yeah. It's because they are out of step, behind the times dinosaurs with nothing bigger to worry about than which stranger is haveing sex with with other stranger. Get over yourselves!
What a bunch of garbage.
I am so sick of the argument that gays are gonna ogle other guys in the showers, etc. Even if they did, do you mean to tell me that you can shoot another human to death, and go fearlessly into battle, but you can't take being admired? Pretty pathetic.
Gays and lesbians in the military are there to do a JOB, not to ogle your sorry behind. Funny how all straight rednecks think they are so desirable to gay guys. What a riot.
Single straight WASC here. Let's see: There are some males who prefer males in certain close in situations and some females who prefer females in certain close in situations. Also, these males and females have enlisted, repeat, ENLISTED, in the Army/Navy/Marine Corps/Air Force/Coast Guard of our Nation, to defend that Nation. And there are certain Republican Party Politicians, and some just regular Republican Party members, twisted in their religious views, under the spell of Pat Buchanan, Preacher Dobbs, and others, who would deny these males and females their right to defend that Nation. This is an easy one. I stand with the Gays and Lesbians. Every single solitary one of them. Period.
Why is anyone even listening to Conservatives? They are not Christian at all. And they are not the authority on morality. If they were Christian, they would look like Christ, and they look nothing like Christ. Pharisees yes, Christ, NO WAY!!
Conservatives = Pharisees = Hypocrites
Sexual assaults are something very different from and not specifically associated with being a homosexual. Ask any sexually-abused woman - any sexually-abused child. The Christian right is so bent in their thinking it's hard to imagine that it can be called 'thinking' at all. It's bigotry and hate wrapped in the cross and blood of Jesus. Man, won't it be great if Christ actually did come back to Earth and told the Christians to take a hike off the planet?
"Homosexuals in the military are three times more likely to commit sexual assaults than heterosexuals are, relative to their numbers."
I call total BS on this statistic. The whole idea of DADT is that the military doesn't keep track of the number of homosexuals in their ranks. So what exactly are they basing "their numbers" on?
The Family Research Council is three times more likely to make up statistics out of thin air when they feel threatened by homosexuals who are risking their lives to serve our country.
Why is that when I read the paper the "rape" cases are all male against female and believe me not a day goes by that there are not several of these reports. I don't believe that I've ever seen a male against male rape reported. Yes there have been cases of solicitation by a male towards another male.
Anyone who is willing to serve in the millitary and protect this country should be welcomed with open arms. Most are trying to avoid seving and they are the same ones who are against gays serving.
Get a grip.
This amount of "assaults" has nothing to do with it. If the person can't control him/herself, they will committ an assault. Isn't there still men raping women in the military? Would this group advocate only straight men go into the military?
I am stating that we can't be dismissing people who have vital skills just because they are homosexuals. This is a volunteer military, and those who chose to serve should be allowed to provided they fit the physical and mental requirement. No, I don't believe that just because you are a homosexual you can't pass a mental fitness test.