October 11, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - After coming out strongly against the repeal of the military’s Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (DADT) policy during the GOP Fox News/Google Debate, Rick Santorum defended his comments in an interview this past Sunday on Fox News with Chris Wallace.
Confronted at the debate by a homosexual soldier, Santorum had explained that he opposed the repeal of DADT, which had forbidden open homosexuals from serving in the military, because it was like “playing social experimentation with our military.”
“The military’s job is to do one thing and that is to defend our country. We need to give the military, which is all volunteer, the ability to do so in a way that is most effective in protecting our men and women in uniform, and I believe this undermines that ability,” he said, adding that, as president, he would reinstitute DADT, but would allow those who had been admitted under the current administration’s policy to remain.
In Sunday’s interview, Wallace compared Santorum’s position to an argument made by Col. Eugene Householder against racial integration of the military.
“The Army is not a sociological laboratory. Experimenting with Army policy, especially in time of war, would pose a danger to efficiency, discipline and morale and would result in ultimate defeat,” read Householder’s 1941 quote.
Santorum objected to the comparison, pointing out: “[Homosexuality] is a behavioral issue, as opposed to a color of the skin issue, and that makes all the difference when it comes to serving in the military.”
“I know the whole gay community is trying to make this the new Civil Rights Act. It’s not. It’s not the same,” the presidential contender added. “You are black by the color of your skin. You are not homosexual necessarily by - obviously by the color of your skin or anything - it’s by a variety of things.”
Wallace also attacked Santorum’s assertion at the debate that “any type of sexual activity has absolutely no place in the military.”
“Heterosexuals have been openly heterosexual for centuries in the military without any problem,” Wallace argued.
“The problem is that sexual activity with people who you are in close quarters with and who happen to be the same sex is different than having a discussion and being open about your sexual activity where you’re not in that same situation,” Santorum responded.
“You’re talking about the ability for people to be able to have that unit cohesion, to be able to work together in an efficient fighting way,” he added, pointing out that members of the military share barracks and showers with others of the same sex.
Santorum also expressed concern over the effect that the policy’s repeal would have on retention and recruitment since some would feel uncomfortable serving under the current policy.