Wednesday, January 31, 2007

More Outrageous Comments By G. Klingenschmitt

G. Klingenschmitt must be operating in a different reality than every commissioned officer I know. About the same time he made the outrageous claims you wrote about, he made yet another unbelievably crazy statement on Beliefnet. He said: "Because the misdemeanor court did not have the power to kick me out of the Navy, ... I immediately predicted the Navy would find some other way and, sure enough, they have," he said Thursday (Jan. 11). No kidding! Who wants a convicted officer serving in the military? It must be pointed out that G. Klingenschmitt's conviction would have been a felony conviction had his command referred him to a General Court Martial rather than a Special Court Martial. The fact that he is not a felon today is more of a testament to the restraint & mercy granted him by his command than to the Navy's impotence.
Of course, the Navy, Army, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard would seek to administratively separate from active duty ANY OFFICER who was convicted in a Court Martial. What is he thinking? The Navy does not want a convicted criminal serving in such a senstive leadership position as a chaplain. It is the duty of all commissioned officers to set the standard for behavior within the services. That is why there is no Good Conduct Medal for officers in any of the military branches. Officers are expected to hold themselves to a higher standard, period. Officers get no "brownie points" for conducting themselves honorably and within the law and requlations. Commissioned officers all know what the expectations are before we accept our appointments. Why is is so difficult for G. Klingenschmitt to understand such a basic concept of honor? What mother or father would want their son or daughter to serve under an officer who is a convicted criminal? For that matter, what Sailor, Marine, Coastguardsman, soldier, or airman would want to go to a chaplain who was convicted in a Court Martial? I don't know too many who would want to do so.
Of all officers, chaplains are held to an even higher standard of conduct that any one else. When a chaplain engages in such unprofessional and unseemly behavior as G. Klingenschmitt had, administrative separation is definitely to be expected. Had he accepted Captain's Mast under Article 15 of the Uniformed Code of Military Justice, G. Klingenschmitt would have still probably been separated from active duty, because of the combination of his poor performance and his misconduct.
G. Klingenschmitt, himself recognizes that he has tarnished his reputation later in the same article I quouted above. "Klingenschmitt had been affiliated with the Evangelical Episcopal Church. He ended that relationship after his court-martial, and is now affiliated with the Chaplaincy of Full Gospel Churches. He said he made the change because he felt the guilty finding of the court-martial no longer permitted him to "maintain a spotless reputation" that was part of his covenant with the Evangelical Episcopal Church." ibid. Klingenschmitt admits that his reputation and honor is spotted by his criminal activities. What makes him think that any of the services would want him to continue serving with such a record? Also, what does that say about G. Klingenschmitt's attitude towards his new church? If he thought his criminal conviction disqualified him from ordained ministry in one church, then why doesn't he think it disqualifies him from being ordained in his new church? Again, what makes him think that his failure to "maintain a spotless reputation" qualifies him for continued active service as a commissioned officer?
Originally posted by CommanderQ (used by permission)