Cadet Chapel, the landmark Gothic church that is a center for spiritual life at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, hosted its first same-sex wedding Saturday.

Penelope Gnesin and Brenda Sue Fulton, a West Point graduate, exchanged vows in the regal church in an afternoon ceremony, attended by about 250 guests and conducted by a senior Army chaplain.

The two have been together for 17 years. They had a civil commitment ceremony that didn’t carry any legal force in 1999 and had long hoped to formally tie the knot. The way was cleared last year, when New York legalized same-sex marriage and President Barack Obama lifted the “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy prohibiting openly gay people from serving in the military.

The brides both live in New Jersey and would have preferred to have the wedding there, but the state doesn’t allow gay marriage…

The NJ legislature passed a law allowing same-sex marriage. Republican Governor Christie vetoed it.

“It has a tremendous history, and it is beautiful. That’s where I first heard and said the cadet prayer,” Fulton said, referring to the invocation that says, “Make us to choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong, and never to be content with a half-truth when the whole can be won.”

The ceremony was the second same-sex wedding at West Point. Last weekend, two of Fulton’s friends, a young lieutenant and her partner, were married in another campus landmark, the small Old Cadet Chapel in West Point’s cemetery.

Fulton has campaigned against the ban on gays in the military as a member of two groups representing gay and lesbian servicemen and servicewomen. She graduated from West Point in 1980, a member of the first class to include women.

She served with the Army Signal Corps in Germany and rose to the rank of captain, but left the service in 1986 partly because she wanted to be open about her sexual orientation. President Obama appointed her last year to the U.S. Military Academy’s Board of Visitors.

Nice to see the US Military continue to march into the 21st Century at a faster pace than some political chickenhawks. For those of us who lived through the end of Jim Crow in our military, the result isn’t a complete surprise. Unlike some politicians, the Pentagon accepts the law of the land – instead of trying to slink back into the past.

  1. noname says:

    This seems less a marriage of “luv” and more about making a statement. How sad…

    • WmDE says:

      After 17 years?

      • McCullough says:

        My wife and I lived together for 18 years before we married. The piece of paper was really just a formality to keep the government from screwing us taxwise. Otherwise we probably would never have married.

        Like the constitution…it’s just a piece of paper.

  2. US says:

    Why is the US military involved with marriage at all? As far as I’m concerned, Westpoint shouldn’t have been used for any wedding, gay or not. I wonder if they had to pay a rental few for the facility?

    • spsffan says:

      For that matter, why is there a ” Gothic church that is a center for spiritual life at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point” ?

      We need to get religion out of government.

      And, why, again, is government in the business of selling marriage licenses?

      • US says:

        Make marriage just like any other business or personal contract. You hire a lawyer to draft the agreement, both sign it and use existing civil procedures for dissolving if needed. Marriage shouldn’t any special status legally speaking, make it a partnership agreement and end all this arguing.

        • noname says:

          Contracts are for adults; contracts are something children don’t understand, nor should they.

          The relationship commitment is needed to best raise healthy offspring. However, in today’s modern society we have “dumbed” down what children need and mass-produced what we adult conveniently believe will provide for them. Divorce is more the norm today; whereas, couple generations ago (3), pre baby boon it was rare.

          Granted all traditional marriages weren’t perfect then; but I bet the byproduct, children where in general much more emotionally secure, health, happy, productive and self reliant!

          We now have changed our view, to fit with a selfish disposable trend, me first and me must feel good society.

          Children are not much more then a status symbol of convenience now then something couples are committed too!

          Have kids and send them to day care. Have kids and wonder why your kids start acting badly.

          Today, it takes almost more then two full-time working spouses to afford a house. That wasn’t the case 40-60yrs ago.

          It used to be, generations ago, America invested and built itself up for the next generation. Now Americans only can care about today’s entertainment and maybe tomorrow’s.

          And, I am not talking about having a large budget deficit that’s necessary to keep the economy going. I am talking about investing wisely in infrastructure, I am talking about business not off-shoring manufacturing, I am talking about not having unnecessary wars, I am talking about wise investing in R&D, and I am talking about affordable education….

          • noname says:

            pp(poor dimwitted pedro), are you always so dense?

            Yes, I voted for the best choice! I voted for Obama.

            Sorry for your loss, but you need to get over it. Own your loss and use it to grow up!

          • noname says:

            pp(poor pedro), what is it I am complaining about?

            Maybe it’s your constant high pitch whining everyone finds really really annoying!

            But, because mentally your basically a child, being adults we deal with it.

          • noname says:

            pp(poor pedro) you actually think your imaginary friends are real!

            What else do those voices tell you?

            Time to take the pills again!

  3. bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

    Unlike some politicians, the Pentagon accepts the law of the land – instead of trying to slink back into the past. /// And what is that?

    Seems to me luv is about luv. Marriage is about a host of related and unrelated legal rights and obligations.

    Anybody that “cares” about this issue is by definition: an asshole.

    FREEEEEEEEDOM: leaving other people alone.

    Silly Hoomans.

  4. MikeN says:

    >passed a law allowing same-sex marriage

    People are focusing on what is allowed and what is banned without asking if it is possible. Marriage is the union of a man and a woman, and thus a same-sex marriage is impossible.

    • bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

      Say Mikey–why do you think it is called “SAME SEX” marriage? As in: NOT your traditional western catholic marriage?

      Silly to argue that a word or concept touching on hooman affairs can mean only one thing.

      Know what I mean?

      • McCullough says:

        So why do YOU care? (see above).

        • bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

          Why do I care?====about what?

          Because I am for FREEEEEEEEEDOM===which is mostly just having the good grace to leave people alone ESPECIALLY when they aren’t bothering you at all.

          But I may not be responding to your imagined questioned. Ambiguity is like that.

          • McCullough says:

            “Because I am for FREEEEEEEEEDOM===which is mostly just having the good grace to leave people alone ESPECIALLY when they aren’t bothering you at all.”

            BS, that’s Libertarian ideology. You are a Liberal which is the EXACT opposite.

          • bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

            More importantly, in your evident view, neither a liberal or a libertarian but rather a ……. LIAR?

            But, I am no Politician.

            Another definitional straight jacket you have chosen to clothe yourself in–from head to foot?

            I have been championing FREEEEEEEEEEDOM on this forum for years now.

            Tell us McCullough–what do you think FREEEEEEEEEEEEDOM is and how would it be different for a liberal than for a libertarian, from a cow in the fields?

          • MikeN says:

            >Because I am for FREEEEEEEEEDOM

            Says the fan of Michael Bloomberg.

          • Mextli says:

            I wish you had never watched Braveheart.

          • bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

            Painting my left butt cheek Blue is what really sucks. I thought it was latex.

          • What? The moth is always drawn to the flame? says:

            Freedom is shackling other people until they do what you want, huh?

            McCullough, were you born that way, or did your parents drop you repeatedly?

          • MikeN says:

            Maybe it’s the Blues Brothers he watched.

  5. deowll says:

    Looks like a couple of near corpses hauled in from the senior citizens center.

    If they want to do a civil union for what ever reason that makes them happy that’s their business.

    Why people want to use a theoretically religious building of the Jewish/Christian/Islamic faith for this escapes me. The texts of all three faiths say you are going to hell and the topic of stoning does come up. All three faiths celebrate marriage and the children they produce. I’m not sure that Buddha signs of on this either in fact I don’t know of a traditional faith that does.

    Sure Herod had a bunch of male/eunuch slaves in his harem along with a bunch of females but they weren’t wives. Tiberius was into guys as well though it isn’t clear that his lovers wanted anything to do with him. What he did to his minnows was sick beyond words and his heir was one of the sickest pukes to ever run any government.

  6. bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

    Why people want to use a theoretically religious building of the Jewish/Christian/Islamic faith for this escapes me. /// Location? View? Cost? To feel they fit in? Family Tradition? To stick it to god? Really, there are all kinds of reasons.

    Escapes you? ==== BWHAHAHAHAHA! That is a funny.

    Make the longest list you can of that which does NOT escape you?

    FREEEEEEEEEEEEEDOM: leaving other people alone. Something that escapes most religious types including their Fuhrer.

    Silly hypocritical Hoomans…….. well, they’d be hypocrites if they actually though anything in the first place…… speaking of what escapes them.

  7. The0ne says:

    Screw this, I’m going for cross-species and if at all likely cross-alien marriage.

  8. msbpodcast says:

    TEAD and the rest of you lot, you do know that when Sir William Wallace (played so, hum, eloquently by Mel Gibson) was screaming Freeeedom! at the end of the movie, he was getting him balls ripped off, just before they drew and quartered him.

    That was the most short lived cry of freedom, rapidly morphing into a little girl scream.

    • spsffan says:

      Wait a GD minute! Mel Gibson gets his balls ripped off in that movie?????!!!!???

      It couldn’t happen to a nicer prick!

      Now I DO have a reason to see it.

  9. Guyver says:

    I’m just surprised the liberals aren’t griping about how there’s a church on government land and whining about their version of separation of church and state.

  10. Dallas says:

    Awesome! This was item #12 (or maybe 13) on the Gay Agenda but I’m as excited since receiving Obama’s election gift.

  11. tcc3 says:

    I see alot of blather about “redefining words.” Marriage began as a legal agreement transferring property (a daughter) between one man (the father) and another (the husband).

    Polygamy used to be not just tolerated but encouraged.

    Feudal Lords used to have “first night” privileges with every newly wedded bride

    Interracial unions were once illegal. Inter-class unions were once illegal.

    Divorce used to be illegal.

    Marriage has been redefined countless times. For all the posturing about the “sanctity of marriage” I hear little about the sanctity of our government. Define marriage how you want, but its illegal for our government to discriminate against a group of people for no reason. One way or the other it has to change.

  12. bobbo, we think with words, and flower with ideas says:

    …. and without thinking about words, our ideas are but weeds.

    Psycholinguistics. Its all definitional and interactive. How do you “think” if you think words only mean one thing? Compare to what the same psycho would think if he applied the notion that words mean what they actively lead to concluding?

    Imagine that different people really don’t think the same.

    Its awesome!!!

    Tolerance for ambiguity—the difference between conservative and liberal mindsets, thinking, —-conclusions.

    ….. and thereby the world gets shaped.

    Silly Hoomans.

    Now, to google just why there is a Chapel on the Academy grounds. I’ll bet its “called” a place of quiet reflection completely supporting the notion of a gay wedding ceremony. Interesting how religion has its nose into the tent of Air Force command.

    Insidious. Can’t serve god AND country. Good thing for the military/society that hoomans are basically hypocrites otherwise rationality wouldn’t stand a chance.

  13. McCullough says:

    Just wondering if the commenters here would support Polyamorus marriage as well as same sex marriage.

    As a leaning Libertarian, I don’t care as long as all parties consent, but should we make this legal as well?

    Something to consider.

    • bobbo, we think with words, and flower with ideas says:

      consider? Yes, indeed.

      ….. and first: consider the guidelines by which you will consider the question. From what context?

      As an issue of individual rights?==as in why not as everything is consensual, or

      As an issue of societal benefit or harm to “all” those involved including those not polyentrenched. Yes—everything is connected to everything else. Everything having its chaotic butterfly effect on everything else.

      Pros and Cons to all we do, oft times REVERSED when we change the context as suggested above.

      Hmmmm. Rich Criminal Liars getting as many spouses as they wish while the poor unable to afford more than one?

      Can I have my cheese now?

      • McCullough says:

        I don’t think you understand what the term Polyamorus means. How does rich enter into it? It might be 2 men and one woman, 3 men, 3 women, etc. Get the point?

        No cheese for you.

        • Dallas says:

          I think we should go with two people marriages (max) for a while. After, in say 25 years, the government should just stop selling marriage licenses.

          How do the Mormons deal with this situation today ? I really don’t know.

        • bobbo, we think with words, and flower with ideas says:

          Polyamorus: Polyamory (from Greek p??? [poly], meaning “many” or “several”, and Latin amor, “love”) is the practice, desire, or acceptance of having more than one intimate relationship at a time with the knowledge and consent of everyone involved. /// You are right, I did not fixate on the emPHAsis you apparently find controlling, but as referenced even in this thread==the context is marriage arrangements?

          Sorry to remain so close to the posted topic.

          • bobbo, we think with words, and flower with ideas says:

            crap===and the efficacy of $MONEY$ to polyamory is not definitional, just OH SO pragmatic. The more poly bucks you have, the more everything else comes to you as well.

            RICH = POLY (whether criminal activities or love relations)

        • MikeN says:

          He thinks the term refers to InTrade. It cost him a large return. Hopefully others on this board cashed in.

  14. silver price says:

    6/7/2010 5:11:13 AM ETHomosexuals are proudly serving now across the Armed Forces. If memory serves me correctly there isn’t a question asking individuals their sexual orientation. So to say that homosexuals are not allowed in the military is an inaccurate statement. The issue boils down to whether this lifestyle should be accepted and it should not. The UCMJ would have to be changed to reflect this lifestyle. Contrary to popular belief, our laws were derived from the Bible. Where else is there in the world a book that outlines what is right and what is wrong not according to man’s standard of living. If some had their way, we would live in a wild wild west society where wrong is right and right is wrong.

    • So what says:

      “Contrary to popular belief, our laws were derived from the Bible.” I suspect the Romans the Babylonians, the Greeks, the Chinese, the Persians, and most lawyers would be very surprised to hear that.

    • bobbo, we think with words, and flower with ideas says:

      Define: derived other than the santorum of your fevered imagination?

      More laws, precepts, and commands of the Bible are rightfully IGNORED or actually ILLEGAL than any of the human universals that were followed by man before hoomans could even speak.

      What a silly turd of hooman you are.

    • Dallas says:

      In my religion, God set forth two simple rules :
      (1) Be cool
      (2) Don’t be an ass

      I don’t see how God decided that a 1,900 page owners manual was prudent. Then it was rewritten by some other guy. The current poop is also making edits . Seems hokey to me. Remember , these guys thought the earth was flat. You with me on this?

  15. Jack O'Shyte says:

    How we love going on about what other people do in their bedrooms.

  16. Axl says:

    Good for them!

  17. orchidcup says:

    Those are evil women.

    You can tell by looking at them.

    They should be burned at the stake and their ashes trampled by donkeys.

    God told me to tell you this. Honest Injun.

    Would I lie?

  18. Charles says:

    osama being reelected is a sign we are in The Last Days before Christ comes, osama Evolved just before he was reelected ( we all know why, osama wanted the votes, and will do whatever it takes to get them no matter the source. A Morally Corrupt administration was needed and wasn’t hard to find, at the Demonrat Convention they voted to leave out the Name of God, until the Decent Moral people in the convention ( who are in the Minority in the Demonrat party ) made such an uproar that they had to put Gods name back. Evil and Immorality are taking over the world. God says in the Bible that ( Homosexuality is an Abomination, ( Old Testament, Leviticus ) and is very Concise and Clear about this Ugly Sin in God’s eyes in the New Testament Romans ch. one, yet these ( People ) think that they can Revel and Celebrate their SIN and Throw it in GOD’S FACE EVERY SINGLE DAY OF THEIR LIVES AND THEY ARE GOING TO DIE AND GO TO HEAVEN, I WOULDN’T HOLD MY BREATH.

    God does Love them, but he doesn’t love their SIN, and he won’t overlook it, but if they REPENT OF THEIR SIN HE WILL FORGIVE THEM. You can’t have your SIN, and Live it t00!!!

    Ancient Rome The Greatest Nation in the World at that time in history. Became Corrupt Morally and Sexually as America is doing,
    Anything goes and is Gradually becoming Accepted here in America Too, but Thank God most of the world is not and will not accept this Repulsive and Disgusting Evil, they are just going To Hell in Different ways, such as their choice of CULTS ALSO KNOWN AS RELIGIONS. We will chose how we live, and THE ONE GOD WILL CHOSE HOW WE FACE ETERNITY. HAVE A NICE DAY.

    • getintouch says:

      fuck you and your god…

    • orchidcup says:

      You religious fanatics have been saying exactly the same things for two thousand years.

      The world is coming to an end. The world is full of sin. The Bible says this. The Bible says that.

      Matthew 16:28 says “There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.”

      Almost every religious sect has predicted the End of The World and The Second Coming.

      World War One was the end of the world in recent. Then World War Two became the end of the world. Then there were predictions the world would end in 1988 for some strange reason. Then the Y2K computer bug signaled the end of the world.

      The End Of The World has been just around the corner for two thousand years.

      Maybe one of these days the religious nutjobs that wish for an apocalypse will get their wish.

      I prefer to live my life one day at a time with a positive attitude. If Jesus returns, then we can talk about things.

      I am certain Jesus will forgive me if I am skeptical of religious wingnuts and their false predictions of an impending apocalypse.

      • orchidcup says:

        Now the Mayan calendar says The End Of The World will fall on December 21.

        Wonderful. Let’s have a party.

        • Deehexi says:

          @orchidcup… didn’t you hear? It was cancelled. So no afterparty… Oh well. But seriously … They found another mayan calendar that goes way beyond that date. And if you think about it…the one where people say the world will end on 21 Dec…the calendar ens a cycle, that’s all. So when one ends a new one will begin.
          Other than that I agree with you on what you said before!!! Let’s talk when the fairy tale comes true.

  19. Likes2LOL says:

    Just a thought: All these gay marriages include lots of money spent on wedding clothes, receptions, gifts, travel and hotel accommodations for the guests, etc. = good for the economy.

    Gay newlyweds are the new job creators!


Bad Behavior has blocked 19496 access attempts in the last 7 days.