Air Force Pulls SOS Material with “Chapel”
The decision came after the Military Religious Freedom Foundation demanded in a March 27 letter to Air Force Secretary Michael Donley and Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz that the service stop using the document on the grounds that it violates the U.S. Constitution.
The Air Force responded to Weinstein’s complaint by saying the coursework would have been withdrawn in this summer’s scheduled curriculum review anyway, as it has already been removed from the in-residence course the correspondence version mimics.
Weinstein was quick to claim “victory” for his role in curriculum monitoring. While someone in the Air Force probably thought “we were going to do it anyway” was a neutrally defensible answer, the perception the Air Force acquiesced to yet another Weinstein demand neither placated him nor improved the situation (as it never has). In fact, as in other cases, it emboldened him:
In a follow-up letter to Gerald Girard, deputy director, administrative law directorate for the JAG office, the MRFF reiterated its demand that all SOS materials be reviewed to ensure there are not similar problems with other course materials.
Weinstein said his group would move ahead with a lawsuit if a review is not begun within two weeks.
Military.com notes Weinstein has filed “several lawsuits…but threatened many more over the past eight years.” It fails to note filing (and threatening) lawsuits does not equal legitimacy. Weinstein has lost every single lawsuit.
One of the more interesting tidbits revealed in this situation was the Air Force’s response to Weinstein’s letter:
As indicated in our previous correspondence, this office represents the Air Force with regard to these issues. Accordingly, please direct any future correspondence to this office.
In other words, they’ve been telling Weinstein to stop sending complaints to the Secretary of the Air Force and Chief of Staff, which has been his habit. It seems Weinstein’s special access to Air Force leadership might have been placed at risk.