‘Serving in Silence’

You can call me paranoid if you must, but the fanfare about "Serving in Silence" was propaganda, not entertainment. "Serving in Silence" is the story of Margarethe Kammemeyer. It was the NBC movie last night. Kammemeyer is the Army colonel who admitted to being a lesbian when she applied to become chief nurse of the National Guard. Because Army regulations are clear—or were—she was discharged. Colonel Kammemeyer sued. A court declared her discharge was unconstitutional. The Army is appealing. All last week, NBC promoted this movie like none before it. Maybe the reason is that this is "Ratings Week" for the big networks. But "Serving in Silence" wasn't just a commercial venture. Barbara Streisand, who makes no secret of her political leanings, made the movie. All last week in interviews she said the Kammemeyer case is an earth-shaking social issue. Allison Cross wrote the movie script. She previously won an Emmy Award for the film version of Roe v. Wade, the abortion-on-demand case. Obviously she thinks the Kammemeyer case is historic, too. Now, according to Streisand, any of us who question such effusions of Hollywood art are boors. Well, permit me as an alleged boor to tell you what I think of "Serving in Silence." I think Colonel Kammemeyer is a boor. And I think all this pro-lesbian propaganda is boring. Our society used to celebrate real heroes. Think of Sergeant York, the one-time pacifist who became our greatest hero of World War I. There were countless books and movies about such truly stirring men and women—men and women who risked their lives to make our country a safe—and a better—place. Not men or women enslaved to their sexuality. So what I resent about "Serving in Silence" is its claim that clamor about sexual behavior can be compared to real heroism. Sure, Colonel Kammemeyer told the truth. But that's not heroism; it's just ordinary honesty. So the only premise for making her out to be a heroine is that being homosexual is heroic. And that's just what the movie's producer declares. "Homophobia still exists in this country," the producer declares. "Sexual orientation is . . . no more important than what color eyes you have . . . . You individualize a person so . . . people start to lose [their] built-in bias." There it is. The purpose of "Serving in Silence" wasn't to entertain; it was to make you and me lose our alleged "built-in bias" concerning lesbians. But of course bias against homosexuals is wrong. So is an undue fear of homosexuals. But saying that improper bias is wrong doesn't translate into making lesbian lovers out to be heroines. Make no mistake about it: NBC ran this movie to brainwash you, me, and our children. We're being told that lesbians are heroines just for being lesbians. Well, forgive me if you must, but I prefer Sergeant York—or Florence Nightingale. And you and I, as Christians, need to tell our children and our friends that refusing to compare Colonel Kammemeyer to Sergeant York doesn't mean we're homophobic. It simply means that we know a real hero, and a real heroine, when we see one.


Chuck Colson


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