Homosexual Assault in the MilitaryBy Peter Sprigg Senior Fellow for Policy Studies
A Family Research Council analysis of publicly available documents-the Pentagon's own report on sexual assault in the military for Fiscal Year 2009, and published decisions from military courts of appeals over the last decade and a half-have shown that there is already a significant problem of homosexual misconduct in the military. This problem can only become worse if the current law is repealed and homosexuals are openly welcomed (and even granted special protections) within the military, as homosexual activists are demanding.
Rates of Homosexual Assault in the Military Are Disproportionately High
Homosexual activist groups themselves have admitted that less than three percent of Americans are homosexual or bisexual.
FRC has reviewed the "case synopses" of all 1,643 reports of sexual assault reported by the four branches of the military for Fiscal Year 2009 (October 1, 2008 through September 30, 2009). Our startling finding was that over eight percent (8.2%) of all military sexual assault cases were homosexual in nature. This suggests that homosexuals in the military are about three times more likely to commit sexual assaults than heterosexuals are, relative to their numbers.
Lack of Privacy Leads to Sexual Assaults
FRC and other supporters of the current law have pointed out the risks involved in having servicemembers share living quarters, showers, and bathrooms with persons of the same sex who may be sexually attracted to them. This concern is borne out by many of the case synopses reported by the Pentagon. The most common type of homosexual assault is one in which the offender fondles or performs oral sex upon a sleeping victim. Assaults upon victims who are intoxicated are also common.
Many Discharges of Homosexuals are for Sexual Assault
Advocates of open homosexuality in the military often lament the fact that several thousand members of the military have been discharged under the 1993 law since its enactment. However, what they fail to note is that many of those discharges are actually for sexual assaults.
Court Records Reveal Shocking Cases of Homosexual Assault
Published decisions of military courts (available on the legal search engine Lexis) give even more detail about homosexual assaults in the military. For example:
- 36-year-old Marine Sgt. Sean D. Habian used both alcohol and homosexual pornography in the course of assaulting a 21-year-old Lance Corporal.
- Marine Sgt. Steven G. Carlson, a military police instructor, took advantage of his position to exploit his students, inviting them to social events, plying them with alcohol, and playing games like "truth or dare" to identify who might be receptive to homosexual activity. One of his victims "testified that the appellant's acts shocked him, he froze, and was scared."
- Homosexual activists are fond of saying that the military cannot afford to lose the specialized skills that some homosexual service members have-such as translators and linguists. Air Force Sgt. Eric P. Marcum was a Persian-Farsi linguist-but also was charged with forcible sodomy against a male Senior Airman who "testified that Appellant's actions made him scared, angry, and uncomfortable."
- Air Force Major Rickie J. Bellanger was charged with sexually abusing two minor boys-one of whom had begun corresponding with Maj. Bellanger when he was in the fifth grade.
The military already has a serious problem with sexual assault by homosexuals. If the current law against homosexuality in the military is overturned, the problem of same-sex sexual assault in the military is sure to increase.
- If the law is overturned and open homosexuals are welcomed into the military, the number of homosexuals in the armed forces can only increase-leading to a corresponding increase in same-sex sexual assaults.
- Removal of the threat of discharge from the military for homosexual conduct will reduce deterrence, likely leading to more cases of sexual assault.
- If homosexuals become a protected class within the military, victims will be afraid to report incidents of homosexual assault and commanders will be afraid to punish them, lest they be accused of "discrimination" or "homophobia."
Allowing open homosexuality in the military would do nothing to enhance the readiness or effectiveness of our armed forces. On the contrary, it would clearly damage them-in part because it would increase the already serious problem of homosexual assault in the military.
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