Pentagon will allow chaplains to perform weddings for same-sex couples on military bases
September 30, 2011
Today, the Pentagon announced that it will allow military chaplains to perform marriages for same-sex couples who live in a state that has ended marriage discrimination. This announcement comes on the heels of the historic repeal of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy that now permits gay and lesbian servicemembers to serve openly. Freedom to Marry's Founder and President Evan Wolfson applauded today's announcement:
“Today's decision reflects the basic constitutional rights and respect for marriage that those serving our country, like all of us, deserve. Discrimination has no place in the military, or in marriage -- and of course people, gay or non-gay, should be able to celebrate their love and commitment in ceremonies without interference by the government.
“In the months ahead, Americans will see gay service-members getting married, surrounded by loved ones, and will get an even better understanding of how the freedom to marry helps families while hurting no one, increasing support for an end to marriage discrimination.”
While today's announcement is certainly cause to celebrate, it does not eliminate the inherent discrimination that gay and lesbian servicemembers and their spouses will endure due to the so-called Defense of Marriage Act. Because of DOMA, gay and lesbian servicemembers and their families are denied critical protections that other members of the armed services are afforded. Click here to tell your members of Congress that it's time to end DOMA so that all loving couples, including those who work in the armed services, are able to protect and provide for their families.