Rep. Huelskamp Thinks "Religious Freedom" Only Applies To His Beliefs

February 07, 2012 3:38 pm ET — Jamison Foser

Rep. Tim Huelskamp

Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) provides some of the clearest evidence you'll ever see that many conservatives fundamentally do not understand what "religious freedom" means:

In addition to ensuring that chaplains will not be coerced to perform or participate in any duty, rite, ritual, ceremony, service or function that is contrary to their own conscience, moral principles, or religious beliefs or those of their faith group, the Military Religious Freedom Protection Act will ensure ... that military facilities or other property owned by the Department of Defense cannot be used to perform a marriage or marriage-like ceremony involving anything other than the union of one man with one woman.

Sure enough, Section 3 of Huelskamp's "Military Religious Freedom Protection Act" reads in full:

SEC. 3. USE OF MILITARY INSTALLATIONS AS SITE FOR MARRIAGE CEREMONIES OR MARRIAGE-LIKE CEREMONIES.

A military installation or other property owned, rented, or otherwise under the jurisdiction or control of the Department of Defense shall not be used to officiate, solemnize, or perform a marriage or marriage-like ceremony involving anything other than the union of one man with one woman.

That's an explicit prohibition on the use of military facilities for religious ceremonies that recognize the union of a same-sex couple. Several churches already allow the blessing of same-sex unions, including the Episcopal Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and it's only a matter of time before more follow in their footsteps. But such ceremonies would be banned under Huelskamp's "Religious Freedom Protection Act." Allowing DOD facilities to be used for religious ceremonies involving "one man with one woman" but disallowing their use for religious ceremonies involving two men or two women is the exact opposite of protecting religious freedom.

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