Monday, May 16, 2016

Not military justice, but

Consider this First Liberty Institute op-ed in The Hill on the so-called Russell Amendment to the pending defense authorization bill. Excerpt:
Chaplains use diverse and varied contractors to help facilitate their ministerial services. For example, a chaplain may seek a vendor to provide ecclesiastical supplies such as communion wine or religious music for worship, and virtually everything in between. Historically, chaplains have been free to use vendors who meet their denomination’s religious standards with little or no government interference.

For example, a Muslim chaplain may request that a prospective religious support contractor—let’s say a Muslim vendor who supplies prayer rugs—adhere to Islam’s teachings on marriage. Likewise, a Catholic chaplain may request that a prospective ecclesiastical supplier comply with the Catholic Church’s teachings on the theology of the body. The government has historically protected chaplains’ rights to choose contractors who align with the chaplain’s denominational doctrine. But now, the historical respect and protection of our chaplains has come to an end.
 See also United States v. Sterling (C.A.A.F.) (pending).

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