I recently received a question from a reader: "Giving the circumstances that we're living today in the United States, do you believe that a traditionalist catholic monarchist can join the Armed Forces, more precisely the Marine Corps?" I thought that my response warranted a post due to the complexity of the question.
Firstly, I must remind my readers that I served in the Army National Guard as an Officer Candidate for about a year-and-a-half almost ten years ago (I was injured in the line of duty--non-combat related--and was subsequently given a medical discharge from the service). When I joined I was a neo-conservative Republican, and did not have my present monarchist views. It was during my service that I heavily developed my current political views (although I believe I have always been somewhat of a monarchist due to interest in royalty from a young age). Would I serve in the U.S. military now as a Traditional Catholic monarchist? Absolutely not.
From a political standpoint, I would have to swear to uphold the constitution of the United States. That constitution is a republican (read that again--republican with a small "r") constitution. I do not believe in the efficacy of republics, nor do I believe that this republic should ever have been established. How could I swear before God (although a recruit does have the option of not invoking God's name in his oath) that I would uphold something in which I do not believe? The U.S. military has also become the self-appointed world police, meddling in other nations' affairs with or without any legitimate American interest. We talk a lot about spreading freedom and democracy around the world (a favorite phrase of neo-conservatives from the Bush era wars). Would a monarchist really want that? At least not the American version of "freedom and democracy."
Looking at the military itself, this nation's military isn't the same military in which I served. When I was in the Guard the Don't Ask Don't Tell policy was in full force. Now homosexuals can openly serve without repercussions. A Traditional Catholic would have to ask himself if he feels comfortable serving in close quarters (i.e. sleeping, showering) with open homosexuals. I don't think the military is any more filled with gays than the general population, but it is a possibility that a new recruit might serve with a homosexual or two. Our culture is extremely tolerant of homosexuality, so for young people (even young Catholics) this may not prove a stumbling-block, but it's at least something to think about.
From a moral standpoint, you would be serving to defend the U.S. and its way of life. What about our nation and our culture is worth killing and dying for? We are a nation that kills its own unborn children for the crime of being conceived under less-than ideal circumstances (and in many cases just because they are unwanted). We are a nation that is increasingly perverting the institution of marriage by trying to redefine marriage as a union between any two people, even two homosexuals. We are a nation that is increasingly losing any sense of right and wrong, good and bad, grace and sin. I don't see much in our culture that is worth dying for, far less worth killing for.
The military is ultimately led by our elected president. Our current president, Barack Obama, is an enemy of God's Holy Catholic Church. He seeks to put limits on our religious freedom by requiring Catholic institutions to provide contraception and abortofacient drugs to its employees or be fined. I would not serve under this man.
I am not a priest nor a theologian. If you are seriously considering joining any branch of the U.S. military I would suggest that you consult with a good priest-confessor and express your questions and concerns about joining the service. I am not in a position to give you spiritual advice, but I can say that if it were me there is nothing that would compel me to serve in this nation's military again.