The Army said Thursday it will not reprimand a decorated chaplain for comments he posted on Facebook questioning Biden administration proposals to change the military’s policy on transgender troops.
The Army “agreed not to issue a formal reprimand against Maj. [Andrew] Calvert. The decision clears the way for Chaplain Calvert’s record to be cleared, resulting in the possibility of future promotions and assignments,” according to a statement by First Liberty Institute, a public interest law firm in Plano, Texas, representing the chaplain.
On Jan. 25, using his personal Facebook account, Maj. Calvert commented on the Army Times Facebook page about a report that the Biden administration would drop the Trump administration’s ban on transgender people serving in the armed forces. The newspaper is a commercial publication independent of the Defense Department.
Maj. Calvert wrote: “How is rejecting reality (biology) not evidence that a person is mentally unfit (ill), and thus making that person unqualified to serve. There is little difference in this than over those who believe and argue for a ‘flat earth,’ despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary.”
“We’re very happy for Chaplain Calvert and we commend the Army for making the right decision,” First Liberty Institute general counsel Mike Berry said in a statement. “No service member should ever be punished because of their religious beliefs.”
Maj. Calvert said: “I am grateful for this favorable decision, and I look forward to continue meeting the spiritual needs of the soldiers with whom I serve.”
• Mark A. Kellner can be reached at email@example.com.
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