The military is about to become a shaggy dog (or camel or sheep) joke

I've got an old joke for you, one that my Dad heard during WWII in North Africa:

A soldier has been serving in the desert for a long time, and has become increasingly antsy as his body craves sexual release. He notices that his fellow soldiers seem much more relaxed than he is. Finally, he overcomes his shyness and approaches one of his mates to find out why the latter isn't sexually frustrated. "Ah," says his mate. "The secret out here is to find yourself a nice camel. You'd be amazed at how good that can feel."

The soldier is horrified at the thought but, eventually, his urges overcome him. He finds himself a nice camel, rather pretty and clean-looking for a camel. He then heads out into the desert with her for some privacy.

Once in the middle of nowhere, he realizes he has a small problem: he can't reach the camel (think Chihuahua approaching a Great Dane). Eventually, our young soldier gets a bright idea. He'll take the camel near a sand dune and then position himself on the sand dune. In his mind, the problem is solved. What he discovers, though, is that camels don't stand still and he finds himself chasing his camel lady through the dunes.

Suddenly, he spies an exquisitely beautiful, half-clothed young woman staggering through the desert towards him. "Help me!" she cries. "If you can save me from this terrible desert, I'll do anything for you. Anything."

The soldier looks the young woman over carefully, and then politely asks "Would you please hold my camel for me?"

Here's another story for you, but it's not a joke. It's a true story about the state of modern academia. Peter Singer holds an endowed chair at Princeton. His books include Should the Baby Live?: The Problem of Handicapped Infants (Studies in Bioethics),Animal Liberation and In Defense of Animals: The Second Wave. Should the Baby Live pretty much sums up the man’s philosophy: he advocates euthanizing handicapped infants. He is, of course, reviled by the handicapped community (and rightly so).

The moral abyss Singer creates with his euthanasia musings is highlighted by the fact that his animal liberation writings make him a founding father of the animal rights movement — a movement that’s come to full flower in PETA insanity (which analogizes the death of chickens to the death of Jews in Hitler’s gas chambers). Singer explicitly believes that a healthy animal has greater rights than a sick person. Singer has also made clear that he has no moral problem with bestiality, provided that the animal consents. (I love the mental image I have here of a cow or sheep carefully perusing a written consent form, before marking an "X" on it with her hoof.) This last "ethical theory" has put Singer at odds with the same animal rights movement he was so instrumental in creating.

If you're wondering now why I'm waffling on about bestiality, which is not normally a subject that concerns this blog or its readers, it's because the Senate has been busy. A few days ago, in response to the end of Don't Ask Don't Tell, and the mandate that the military provide a welcoming environment to homosexuals, the Senate (with almost complete unanimity) passed a bill repealing the military law on sodomy. Doing so is a logical step to take given prior changes in the military code of conduct.

But one really has to ask why the Senate also repealed the law against bestiality. As far as I know, the Senate hasn't provided any answers. Although I don't see our young men and women in arms suddenly rushing out to enjoy carnal relationships with camels, sheep or any other convenient (and possibly promiscuous) livestock, there is still something . . . umm, what's the word? Unseemly? Unsavory? Unnatural? Creepy? Unwholesome? Well, there's something just wrong when one thinks about the United States Senate green-lighting behavior that is normally reserved for risqué jokes and bizarre ethical discussions held far, far out on the wacky spectrum of liberal philosophy.

As for me, while bestiality is nothing new, I'm hard put to think of any society, outside of Princeton University, that has ever put its imprimatur on bestiality -- except, if our Senate has its way, for the United States Military.We'll see now what the House does with this quirky little add-on to the realm of acceptable behaviors in the U.S. Military.

Cross-posted at Bookworm Room