Southern Baptists order military chaplains not to officiate or attend gay weddings
From Raw Story:
In addition to ordering Baptist chaplains to adhere to the church’s “marriage is for one man and one woman” line doctrinally and pastorally, the guidelines say, “NAMB-endorsed chaplains will not conduct or attend a wedding ceremony for any same-sex couple, bless such a union or perform counseling in support of such a union, assist or support paid contractors or volunteers leading same-sex relational events, nor offer any kind of relationship training or retreat, on or off of a military installation, that would give the appearance of accepting the homosexual lifestyle or sexual wrongdoing. This biblical prohibition remains in effect irrespective of any civil law authorizing same-sex marriage or benefits to the contrary.”
They are also forbidden from attending any worship service that is presided over by any LGBT member of the clergy.
The guidelines also state that Baptist chaplains shall not be infringed upon by the U.S. Department of Defense if they choose to promote anti-LGBT views and call same sex relationships a sin and a moral degradation. Their pastors should be free to “preach, teach and counsel in accordance with the tenets of their denominational faith group and their own religious conscience,” said the board.
This would put Southern Baptist military chaplains in violation of the military code, which orders equal treatment for all service members's faiths.
The Southern Baptists, of course, were big backers of NC's Amendment One. This shift in strategy by religious right extremists was expected - since discriminatory measures like Amendment One at the state level will likely fall as being unconstitutional, groups like the Southern Baptists are moving to "chip away" at the constitutional rights of gays and lesbians through other venues.
It's not unlike the futile attempts at denying marriage certificates for mixed race couples after the Supreme Court's Loving decision or fighting desegregation, claiming that "mixing" of the races discriminated against conservative religious dogma. Currently, religious conservatives are using the same tactics against abortion, with employees of pharmacies wanting a "religious exemption" for dispensing "plan b" contraceptives in pharmacies or battling public funding of abortion services.
Religious extremists have to recognize the difference between private worship in their own church or home and the fact that employees and businesses cannot discriminate against religious belief in the public sphere.