Accuracy in Media

At the beginning of ABC’s “This Week” show on Sunday, on the Pentagon’s homosexual exclusion policy, reporter John Donvan confirmed something that we have not seen reported on any other Big Media outlet—General George Washington, the father of our country, opposed gays in the military and in fact had them kicked out of the Armed Forces when he needed as many soldiers as possible to protect the new nation.

Ironically, however, host Christiane Amanpour preceded this report by showing an excerpt of a Jon Stewart Comedy Central program that featured retiring Democratic Senator Evan Bayh saying, at a Senate hearing: “In all likelihood, there were gay Americans serving at Valley Forge.” Actually, it isn’t very likely.

Amanpour introduced the Donvan report by saying, “…as ABC’s John Donvan first reports, the issue of gays in the military is as old as the nation itself.” Indeed it is.

As the sound of a drum played in the background, Donvan reported that a homosexual soldier was indeed drummed out of the Continental Army: “Hear that sound? That’s how General George Washington dealt with it. Informed that one of his officers had an interest in sodomy—that was the charge—Washington kicked the man out. Correct that: He had him drummed out, literally, a policy at least with clarity.”

As we have reported previously, David Barton of Wallbuilders has provided historical evidence that General George Washington himself authorized the court-martial and expulsion of the soldier.

Writing about the incident, Peter Sprigg of the Family Research Council provided additional details, saying, “Like today, his army was at war. Like today, his army had serious problems of recruitment and retention. Perhaps, like today, there might have been some people who would have argued that his army could not afford to lose a soldier over something like his sexual conduct.” Nevertheless, Lieutenant Frederick Gotthold Enslin was kicked out “for attempting to commit sodomy” and Washington himself referred to the conduct as abhorrent. Enslin was reportedly one of several such cases.

Meantime, Center for Military Readiness president Elaine Donnelly, who participated in the debate on ABC’s “This Week,” was featured in a Washington Post article on Sunday as leading the conservative fight against repeal of the Pentagon policy but lamenting “in a recent interview that traditionally conservative media, including commentators Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh, have not zeroed in on the debate.” Yes, these conservative media personalities have mostly been AWOL in this critical battle in the culture war.

This is why the Army envisioned by General Washington, with character, integrity and morality at the forefront, is hanging by a thread.

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