Jason Torpy, Mikey Weinstein on Chaplain Modder Victory

After a Navy commander’s attempt to discharge Chaplain Wes Modder was rebuffed by a Navy admiral, the Washington Times interviewed him on the follow-up. It also sought comment from two critics of religious freedom in the military: perpetually-offended atheist Jason Torpy, and frequent critic of military Christians, Michael “Mikey” Weinstein.

For his part, Torpy thought Modder should have gotten the boot, and he thinks the Navy’s reaction is “unclear”:

The Navy’s decision, he said, “leaves unclear whether it is acceptable for senior officers to use the Bible to justify belittling gay and women sailors.”

On the contrary, the “acceptability” of Torpy’s statement had nothing to do with the case. Rather, the Navy left it very clear that a chaplain making religious statements, in response to queries and in counseling, did not equate to the “gross negligence or complete disregard of duty” necessary for discharge. This is true regardless if the chaplain is Bible-believing, Torah-believing, or Qu’ran-believing.

It is acceptable for senior officers — and any other member of the military, for that matter — to state their beliefs when asked, even if some people might not like those beliefs.

When the Times finally got to Mikey Weinstein, it seems he couldn’t find the words:

Weinstein…declined to comment on Chaplain Modder’s case because of the potential for federal litigation on the matter.

The “potential” for litigation kept Weinstein quiet? That’s pretty unusual, first because there have been no public statements about any litigation to date, and second given how verbose and alliterative Weinstein is in most other circumstances, even when “federal litigation” may be a “potential.”

Remember, too, that Mikey Weinstein wrote (or more likely, edited) an invective-filled diatribe against Modder last April in which he claimed Modder was being punished for his “actions,” not his “beliefs,” though in the 2,000-word novella Weinstein never once said what those actions were. Weinstein did say, among other things, that Chaplain Modder had “disgustingly homophobic and chauvinistic [beliefs].” Further,

[Modder] sucks. He’s a destroyer of the very bones, blood, sinew and muscle that the Navy needs to effectively function…

He is nothing more than a common bigot…

Good riddance, Chaplain Hater.

Weinstein had plenty to say about Modder… until the US Navy decided the attempt to kick him out was wrong.

Though generally less vitriolic than Weinstein, Torpy has never claimed to advocate for religious freedom. Rather, he has openly advocated for restricting religious liberty to advance other causes, including erotic liberty. In that regard, his belief that a Christian chaplain should be kicked out for saying something Christian is consistent, even if unjust.

Weinstein, though, has at least claimed to support religious freedom. That he would deliver such a hate-filled attack against a chaplain, rather than defend the principle of liberty even in the face of disagreement, undermines Weinstein’s thin plaster façade about “religious freedom.”