Jump to content
  • Sign Up
  • Join Our Community!

    Get help in our celiac / gluten-free forum.

  • Jefferson Adams
    Jefferson Adams

    Ted Cruz Declares War on Gluten-free Soldiers

    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

    Caption: Ted Cruz is against gluten-free meals for US troops. Photo: CC--Matt Johnson

    Celiac.com 02/19/2016 - Did senator Ted Cruz just declare war on gluten-free soldiers? It kind of looks like that.

    Photo: CC--Matt JohnsonIn an attempt to show he can be tough on American servicemen and women with celiac disease, the Republican presidential hopeful declared that, in the event the American people find him serving as their president and commander-in-chief, there will be no gluten-free MREs for soldiers anywhere under his command.

    Campaigning in South Carolina, and courting pro-military voters, the Texas senator seemed to believe he was striking a blow against what he describes as a culture of "political correctness" in the Pentagon.

    Speaking in broad strokes, Cruz said that "…the last thing any commander should need to worry about is the grades he is getting from some plush-bottomed Pentagon bureaucrat for political correctness or social experiments -- or providing gluten-free MREs;" the shorthand term for Meal, Ready-to-Eat.

    According to Ted Cruz, it's a bad thing to be in favor of soldiers with celiac disease having a gluten-free meal when they're in the field—while they might be putting their lives on the line in service to our country.

    Should American servicemen and women with celiac disease or gluten intolerance have their medical treatment made into a political issue? Apparently Cruz thinks so.

    However, since celiac disease is a bona fide medical condition, and a gluten-free diet is the only currently recognized treatment, regardless of whether you are Democrat or Republican, Ted Cruz, or anyone else who aspires to be commander-in-chief of the armed forces, should simply not be treating them like second-class citizens.

    All soldiers with medical conditions deserve proper treatment, that includes service men and women with celiac disease and medical conditions that require treatment with a gluten-free diet.

    Let the senator from Texas know what you think: Ted Cruz on Twitter @tedcruz

    Source:


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments



    I went back and looked at multiple reporting of this incident and it appears to me that Sen. Cruz was using gluten-free food for his tough guy act. It also seems to me that he is ignorant about the medical necessity for a gluten free diet for someone with celiac disease. Else, why would you say such a thing. Very imprudent!

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    This is complete and totally misleading and inaccurate.

    He did not say at all that no gluten free meals would be served and you know it. How shameful of you to publish this so blatantly false information.

    He's using the "dog-whistle" tactic of silently coupling "gluten-free" with "liberal politically-correct wussy" in the minds of those who are listening. Why else single it out? He's shamelessly playing to the crowd with that comment and it is worthy of derision. How can a candidate who plugs his "faith" so shamelessly be so callous to the medical needs of those he can't seem to wait to put in harm's way? Rafael Eduardo looks forward to the creation of many thousands of brand new war veterans.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Please tell us what part is inaccurate? Ted Cruz said MRE's, and that is what this article said...

    This article, like the whole blown up issue, is absurd. Cruz was commenting on what a commander should be worried about and what they should not be worried about - and they most certainly should NOT be worried about what those under their command are eating. They have much larger issues to be in control of. But since many in the gluten-free community have chosen to twist his comments to mean that he feels those with celiac should not be in the military, let's talk about that.

    Brain fog, extreme fatigue, joint pain, diarrhea, vomiting...these are just a few of the symptoms that might occur if someone with celiac disease accidentally consumes gluten. In a combat situation, there is NO way to guarantee without a shadow of a doubt that accidental gluten consumption might not occur. So there will always be the possibility of gluten. No way should someone who may experience any of the above symptoms be trusted with weapon, trusted to care for others under high stress conditions, trusted with the safety of the sons and daughters of our country and other countries, or be trusted to make sound judgement calls under already strained conditions - namely combat! I can't believe anyone with any experience with celiac disease would see anything wrong with keeping those with celiac disease out of these situations. The way some (you included) have spun this is EXACTLY what Cruz was referencing. Our country has become one of complete political correctness - even at the expense of common sense. What's next?? Insisting that accommodations be made so that quadriplegics can man the front lines? This country needs to quit making every issue personal and turning everything into how it's wronged so and so.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    DID HE WAGE WAR???? REALLY?

    This problem has been a long standing one with the military LONG before Ted Cruz. You are apparently ill informed.

    Clearly you just wanted to make your political statement and get people enraged. You did exactly as you intended.

    I agree, Linda!

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I was married to a Marine who fought in Viet Nam. It would've been impossible in a combat setting to provide for any dietary special need. I don't think anyone with a life threatening or possibly debilitating disease should be allowed in combat settings. It wouldn't be safe for them or even possibly their unit. That's not to say someone with Celiac shouldn't be allowed to serve - they should be, but in a more controlled setting where their special dietary needs can be taken care of on a regular basis.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    I don't really wish to impugn the motives for authoring this piece. However it is my understanding that the military service policy in this nation is that people with Celiac Sprue if identified as such prior to applying for military duty, can be rejected for same based on this condition. That is my understanding. Now in the real world, I am sure people get into the military who do have Celiac Sprue. The question is salient as to what to do then, plus a lot of other questions along with that. Let's look at history in this regard: A young man who obviously had Celiac, John F. Kennedy, got into the military. Now of course he had to pull strings because his official diagnosis was Addison's Disease, although that was bogus. But because he pulled strings, he got into the Navy and became a war hero in World War II. The rest is history as they say. So there are a bunch more issues here than meets the eye based on this article is my point.

    Jeff, that is my understanding as well. And when you think about it, someone suffering with GI issues, vomiting and fatigue while serving on the battlefield is EXTREMELY ill advised! Hell, it is hard enough leaving my own home for extended periods of time, not to mention heading to the Middle East for months at a time!!

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Actually it is Cruz who is ill informed and made a political statement that was intended to get people enraged, we are just reporting it.

    admin: you are right. Is he ready to stop pampering guys with insulin shots?

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    This article, like the whole blown up issue, is absurd. Cruz was commenting on what a commander should be worried about and what they should not be worried about - and they most certainly should NOT be worried about what those under their command are eating. They have much larger issues to be in control of. But since many in the gluten-free community have chosen to twist his comments to mean that he feels those with celiac should not be in the military, let's talk about that.

    Brain fog, extreme fatigue, joint pain, diarrhea, vomiting...these are just a few of the symptoms that might occur if someone with celiac disease accidentally consumes gluten. In a combat situation, there is NO way to guarantee without a shadow of a doubt that accidental gluten consumption might not occur. So there will always be the possibility of gluten. No way should someone who may experience any of the above symptoms be trusted with weapon, trusted to care for others under high stress conditions, trusted with the safety of the sons and daughters of our country and other countries, or be trusted to make sound judgement calls under already strained conditions - namely combat! I can't believe anyone with any experience with celiac disease would see anything wrong with keeping those with celiac disease out of these situations. The way some (you included) have spun this is EXACTLY what Cruz was referencing. Our country has become one of complete political correctness - even at the expense of common sense. What's next?? Insisting that accommodations be made so that quadriplegics can man the front lines? This country needs to quit making every issue personal and turning everything into how it's wronged so and so.

    So you do realize that our Jewish and Muslim combat troops can get Kosher and Halal MRE's, right? (https://www.troopsupport.dla.mil/subs/rations/programs/rel/relabt.asp) Apparently some past Commander in Chief or Congress has believed that religious dietary issues are important enough to accommodate US service men and women in combat, so why not accommodate those who need a special diet for medical reasons?

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    To be fair.....have you done an article critical of Michelle Obama's interference with the nation's school lunch program?

    Maybe I just missed it.

    When she advocated for healthier school lunches? That topic doesn't relate directly to celiac disease or a gluten-free diet, but if the First Lady did address a gluten-free diet in any way it would certainly be news here.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    The US military currently provides kosher meals to Jewish troops. What if Ted Cruz said that US generals shouldn't have to worry about providing kosher meals to our Jewish troops? Would that be news? Would that be considered acceptable public policy?

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    I don't really wish to impugn the motives for authoring this piece. However it is my understanding that the military service policy in this nation is that people with Celiac Sprue if identified as such prior to applying for military duty, can be rejected for same based on this condition. That is my understanding. Now in the real world, I am sure people get into the military who do have Celiac Sprue. The question is salient as to what to do then, plus a lot of other questions along with that. Let's look at history in this regard: A young man who obviously had Celiac, John F. Kennedy, got into the military. Now of course he had to pull strings because his official diagnosis was Addison's Disease, although that was bogus. But because he pulled strings, he got into the Navy and became a war hero in World War II. The rest is history as they say. So there are a bunch more issues here than meets the eye based on this article is my point.

    People with known, diagnosed celiac disease are not admitted into the military. However, we have many servicemen and women who are diagnosed after they begin their service. My understanding is that, once discovered, celiac troops are moved to positions where their medical meal needs can be accommodated, i.e., non-combat positions. Still Cruz's comments are legitimate targets for questions or criticism, at least from the standpoint of a celiac disease and gluten-free information site, such as celiac.com.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites



    Join the conversation

    You are posting as a guest. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
    Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

    Guest
    Add a comment...

    ×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

      Only 75 emoji are allowed.

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

    ×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams is Celiac.com's senior writer and Digital Content Director. He earned his B.A. and M.F.A. at Arizona State University, and has authored more than 2,000 articles on celiac disease. His coursework includes studies in science, scientific methodology, biology, anatomy, medicine, logic, and advanced research. He previously served as SF Health News Examiner for Examiner.com, and devised health and medical content for Sharecare.com. Jefferson has spoken about celiac disease to the media, including an appearance on the KQED radio show Forum, and is the editor of the book "Cereal Killers" by Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.

  • Forum Discussions

    The blood test are used for initial screening while the endoscope with biopsy is the gold standard for diagnosis, there...
    Hi, wondering if anyone can help me.   basically I have been tested around 2/3 times for celiac/colitis/Crohns/a...
    It only takes one positive to get a referral to a GI.  You have several positives,  but that does not mean you have mo...
×
×
  • Create New...