Mikey Weinstein Fears a God-Friendly US Military
In a somewhat meandering article entitled “Watchdog: Conservative President May Mean More God-Friendly Military,” Bryant Jordan of Military.com quoted Michael “Mikey” Weinstein as concerned that a Republican victory in November could lead to a US government “more friendly to Christianity:”
Weinstein said the contest to succeed President Barack Obama is giving fuel to his critics. “With Obama being gone, [some commanders] expect an administration to be more friendly to Christianity…”
To paraphrase Seinfeld… as if there’s something wrong with that? Why would a religious freedom advocate take issue with, in his intimation, progress in religious freedom?
It turns out Weinstein thinks subversion is already underway:
“Now we are sensing more resistance” to church and state separation, he said.
Jordan does not indicate Weinstein provided any evidence of this “more resistance” based on political winds, but Jordan himself intimated as much in noting Weinstein’s recent ‘losses’ in his war against religious freedom in the military:
In three recent cases, the military has either said no or ignored Weinstein’s efforts to have public displays of religion by military personnel stopped.
To repeat… as if there’s something wrong with that?
To be fair, Jordan did try to balance the article by citing two other people. He quotes Rob Boston of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State — a Weinstein ally — as essentially saying Weinstein wouldn’t win the lawsuit he’s threatening over a “God bless the military” sign.
Jordan also quoted First Liberty Institute (formerly the Liberty Institute) attorney Michael Berry pointing out that Weinstein’s characterization demeans the character of US troops [emphasis added]:
“Our military commanders swear an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution, regardless of who happens to be commander-in-chief,” Berry said in an email to Military.com. “If Mr. Weinstein claims or suggests our military commanders do otherwise, I think that is incorrect and irresponsible.
“The vast majority of our military leaders desire to do the right thing, especially when it comes to protecting religious freedom in our military,” he said. “But nobody is perfect, and when a mistake occurs, we should give commanders the opportunity to do the right thing, not demand their court-martial and imprisonment, as Mr. Weinstein demands.”
And that goes to the core of the issue. Weinstein uses extreme words not just because he is an extremist, but also because his inflammatory vitriol can create sound bites that get him the attention he wants. He seeks publicity not just more than religious freedom, but at the cost of it.
Weinstein has previously shown adept public relations skills in latching on to current events to coattail his “charity” into the press. His vague citation here that he is “sensing” something based on one of the biggest news stories of the day is nothing more than crowd searching.
The interview with Bryant Jordan almost certainly occurred prior to this weekend, otherwise Weinstein would have pontificated (probably impolitely) about Justice Antonin Scalia instead — only because of the publicity surrounding that story.
Michael Berry is correct; US military commanders are generally bigger men — of character and integrity — than Mikey Weinstein would allow.
And a US government — and military — that is “friendly” to God and religious freedom is precisely what the writers of the US Constitution intended — and that document is what US troops swear to support and defend.