Adultery in the Military

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Adultery in the Military

As citizens of the United States of America we are all governed by a certain set of rules. These laws are set forth by our elected officials. These laws deal with almost all aspects of life including morally wrong actions such as murder and theft. However, these laws do not govern many other moral choices such as adultery. As members of the United States Armed Forces, we are also regulated by an additional set of rules. We must abide by the sanctions of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). Unlike our state laws, the UCMJ does have articles that address the subject of adultery. The UCMJ articles that now pertain to adulterous actions are very strict and limit personal choice. These articles should be reviewed and changed so that the law is clearer and so that there is one standard, which has fewer repercussions.

On the other hand, some people believe that military personnel should be held to a higher standard. These people believe that adulterous relationships disrupt the “good order and discipline in the armed forces” (UCMJ 1). Proponents of the UCMJ law against adulterous relationships argue that adultery is morally wrong. They also believe that it goes against everything that the military stands for and that a soldiers “conduct is a direct reflection of each and every member of” the United States Armed Forces (Benin 31). Just as Rene Descartes said, “To know what people really think, pay regard to what they do, rather than what they think” (Benin 32). Civilian citizens definitely draw conclusions about the military from what they see and hear in the media rather than from listening to what the person involved has to say. And many people believe that adultery is wrong in any c...

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...als with Lt. Flinn. Lt. Flinn was not given a promotion, she was not asked to retire, she was given a dishonorable discharge form the military. Many people, including myself believe that this is a double standard. Even the highest-ranking officers should be held to the same standards as a junior enlisted person. An admiral or a general should be held to even higher standards because they are the main representation of the Armed Forces. They are the people that are in the media and in the spotlight in times of crisis. They are the people that the recruits look up to and aspire to be. I do not believe that the UCMJ laws against adultery should be eliminated, but I do believe that they should be changed as to set a standard for the entire Armed Forces. These rules should be abided by and if they are breached, there should be similar consequences for everyone.