The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

‘Entangled in the Homosexual Web’

Posted on | May 18, 2016 | 52 Comments

“Homosexuality destroys a woman’s personal integrity. Little by little, she becomes more deeply entangled in the homosexual web. . . . She finds it easier to submit to homosexuality than to fight against it. . . .
“She slowly deteriorates in character, losing her power of will, and her integrity. Thus the deterioration and destruction of character and integrity are the end results of homosexuality.”

U.S. Navy, “Indoctrination of WAVE Recruits on Subject of Homosexuality,” 1952, reprinted in The Lesbian Issue: Essays from Signs, edited by Estelle B. Freedman, et al. (1985)

Imagine yourself a young woman recruited into the Navy in 1952 — Harry Truman was president and American boys were fighting Communists in Korea — and finding that, as part of your basic training, you are lectured by two officers and a chaplain about the dangers of homosexuality.

“It is important that you understand the Navy’s policy toward homosexuality,” your unit officer explains:

“The policy of the Navy is quite positive in that all persons found guilty of so much as one single homosexual act while in the Naval service must be eliminated from the service. The ‘first timer’ or experimenter is just as liable to separation as the confirmed homosexual. . . . Under certain circumstances she will be given an undesirable discharge, commonly called a U.D. It means she has been discharged from the Navy as an undesirable, and her discharge papers will state that it is under conditions other than honorable and without satisfactory service. In certain circumstances she may face trial by General Court-Martial. . . .
“The families, parents, and friends of women who have been discharged from the Navy for homosexual acts, write tearful letters to the Navy Department in Washington, D.C., begging for relief from the type of discharge they have received. They claim the Navy has branded them as homosexuals, and because of this they find it difficult to earn a living, or find an acceptable young man for dating, companionship, or possible marriage. Actually, the Navy has not branded these women. They have branded and disgraced themselves, and no relief is possible. Women who engage in homosexual acts cannot and will not be tolerated by the United States Navy.”

This is part of a lengthy presentation, which is followed by a presentation by the medical officer, and then it’s the chaplain’s turn:

“Moral and ethical codes reaching far back into history are against any form of homosexuality. It is universally condemned by all religions. All nations who have given way to the practice of homosexuality have fallen and it is against the law of all civilized nations. The guilt associated with homosexuality is a barrier between the individual and God.
“The Creator has endowed the bodies of women with the noble mission of motherhood and bringing human life into the world. Any woman who violates this great trust by participating in homosexuality not only degrades herself socially but also destroys the purpose for which God created her.”

You can read the entirety of these presentations, which I have scanned in and uploaded to Scribd as a Word document:

Navy Lesbian Briefings 1952 by Robert Stacy McCain

These official presentations, which were part of every Navy woman’s training, were instituted in the wake of a scandal in Washington, historians Allan Berube and John D’Emilio explained in their article:

Early in 1950 a State Department official testified before the Senate that several dozen employees had been dismissed on charges of homosexuality. . . . A Senate investigation into the employment of “homosexuals and other sex perverts” painted a menacing picture of the infiltration of the federal government by “sexual deviants” whose presence threatened the moral welfare of the nation. The popular press kept the homosexual issue alive with reports of dismissals from government service and exposés of alleged homosexual “rings.” Scandal writers in stories with such titles as “Lesbians Prey on Weak Women” charged that there were cells of lesbians in the schools and in the military bent on seducing the innocent.
Rhetoric portraying sexual deviance as a threat to national security had its analogue in more repressive policies. . . . The military’s response to the “homosexual menace” was especially severe.

Far be it from me to say that the United States Senate was wrong about “sexual deviants” posing “a threat to national security.” How do you think America could have won the Cold War if something hadn’t been done to stop “homosexuals and other sex perverts” from infiltrating?

The 1952 training presentations to Navy women make for lively reading:

There are several techniques which may be used by the practicing homosexual to lure you into involvement in a homosexual act.
One of the most commonly used techniques is for the practicing homosexual to use friendship as a means to secure for herself a partner in her homosexual acts. . . . The practicing homosexual may begin her approach to you as a sympathetic, understanding and motherly person. At first she will present the same appearance as many of your friends. She will have many interests in common with you, but as time progresses you will be aware that she is developing this friendship as much as possible along romantic lines. . . . As time goes by, she may propose that you take a week-end trip with her to a near-by city, to sightsee or take in a show. This trip will involve sharing a hotel or motel room. When you are alone . . . she orders drinks . . . and more and more alcohol is consumed. Then follow the improper physical advances and a homosexual act is committed. . . .
If a homosexual makes an approach to you . . . stay away from her. If you have evidence of homosexual acts report them to the proper authorities.

Why were the top brass at Navy headquarters so familiar with these “techniques” of the “practicing homosexual”? Maybe it’s because of all those “tearful letters” they got after “undesirables” were discharged. If this sounds like the plot of an old pulp novel, hey, it was 1952, OK?

It was during the medical officer’s presentation that Navy recruits got the psychiatric community’s view of homosexuality:

Generally speaking, homosexual activity is the manifestation of failure on the part of the individual to grow up sexually, which leads to personality disorders in adult life. This is true whether the individual be exclusively homosexual or only a “dabbler.” . . .
Several common misconceptions exist about homosexuality and it is these misconceptions which lead people into trouble. One such misconception is that it is easy to identify a practicing female homosexual by her masculine mannerisms and characteristics. This is not true. Many practicing homosexuals are quite feminine in appearance and some are outstandingly so. . . .
Another misconception is that those who engage in homosexuality are safe from acquiring venereal disease. This is also not true . . .
A third misconception is that homosexuals are born and not made. This idea leads to the beliefs, first, that an individual who is not born a homosexuality can participate in homosexual acts without danger and, second, that nothing can be done medically for the confirmed homosexual. Neither of these beliefs is true. Treatment is available for even the confirmed homosexual but this is not an obligation of the Navy Medical Corps. As to the other belief, repeated dabbling in homosexuality in late adolescence as well as in adulthood can and frequently does constitute the making of a homosexual. Some who start as “dabblers” or “experimenters” progress steadily to become exclusively homosexual in their behavior. Experimentation, therefore, aside from being an infringement on social as well as Navy standards, is dangerous in its own right.

Got that, you “dabblers”? Cease your “dabbling” immediately! As an American, heterosexuality is your patriotic duty. You’d better “grow up sexually” and meet “Navy standards,” because if you continue your adolescent “dabbling,” you might become a “confirmed homosexual.”

Remember: “Lesbians Prey on Weak Women” — this was once reported as news, so therefore it must be true — and these Navy briefings for recruits represented the official policy of the United States government.

There was a scientific consensus about homosexuality in 1952.

Just like global warming nowadays, really.



52 Responses to “‘Entangled in the Homosexual Web’”

  1. News of the Week (May 22nd, 2016) | The Political Hat
    May 22nd, 2016 @ 3:45 pm

    […] “Entangled in the Homosexual Web” Imagine yourself a young woman recruited into the Navy in 1952 — Harry Truman was president and American boys were fighting Communists in Korea — and finding that, as part of your basic training, you are lectured by two officers and a chaplain about the dangers of homosexuality. […]

  2. Jim Christian
    May 24th, 2016 @ 6:14 am

    Hey, I was a flight deck rat in an A-6 Intruder squadron aboard Nimitz 1976-1982 and our enlistment contracts were loaded with things to sign, one of them a pledge not to be homosexual, nor engage in queer acts. A couple of guys were kicked out of the Navy from our ship, at sea, no questions asked, just gone. The military then was another form of “Don’t ask, don’t tell” and then, it was, “we don’t want to hear it, you’re gone”. Different days.