Mikey Weinstein Ties Capitol Riot to Military Christians
In his latest effort to ride the coat tails of trending news, Michael “Mikey” Weinstein contends he has warned for years about what led to the riot at the Capitol in early January.
In Weinstein’s words to the US Air Force Academy: “We told you so.”
We warned you that this radical, right-wing influence found not only at USAFA, but tolerated or even endorsed by senior officers throughout the Air Force, caused a toxic leadership environment and eroded unit cohesion, good order, morale, and discipline. We constantly worried and warned that these seemingly (to some) innocuous events would lead to embarrassment for our Air Force Academy or worse — and that’s exactly what’s happened.
As proof, Weinstein cited retired LtCol Larry Brock, who was prominently photographed in the Capitol building during the riot.
As with some of Weinstein’s prior claims of validation, however, this one also requires a time machine to be true. Brock graduated with the USAFA Class of 1989 – more than 16 years before Weinstein started his very profitable non-profit “religious freedom” organization. At some point, Brock transitioned to the Reserves, from which he retired in 2014.
As with most of his other accusations, Weinstein cites absolutely zero facts about Brock’s religion, ideology, or military career to prove his assertions that Brock – or anyone else, for that matter – were part of the
growing threat of fundamentalist Christian extremism and its evil twin white nationalism within the ranks of the military.
It’s hard for Weinstein to claim, with any degree of intellectual integrity, that the MRFF “told you so” about Brock, who preceded MRFF and about whom the MRFF said…nothing.
Facts have never gotten in the way of Weinstein’s vengeful vendetta before, though.
To be fair, the US military has always had liars, murderers, racists, tax frauds, and other types of evil and morally corrupt people within its ranks. The US military is a microcosm of American society, which also has those traits. To the extent it can, the military tries to prevent those people from entering the military to begin with – though it has been known to grant “moral waivers” when its recruiting goals were more important than its character. Still, people with undesirable – or even prohibited – traits have been known to successfully join the military (though homosexuals and transgenders claim their successful presence, while in violation of regulations, is proof they should be allowed to remain).
To appear appropriately chagrined, the US military is now wringing its hands over how some people associated with the military were involved in the riot. To date, it appears veterans and a few Guard or Reserve troops may have been involved. What veterans do is, of course, completely up to them as civilians – their military history notwithstanding. The potential restrictions on the conduct of Guard and Reserve troops, however, is sometimes harder to explain, because they are “citizen-Soldiers,” both civilians and also serving in the military. (For example, members of the Guard or Reserve can run and serve in political office, while Active Duty troops cannot.)
The order was designed to allow military leaders to make clear that white supremacy and other extremist ideology had no place in the armed forces and to hear from troops about how they view the problem, Kirby said.
The order was reportedly connected to the Capitol riot, despite the fact the riot has not been legitimately connected to an organized effort by “white supremacists.” It’s also an affront to US troops to claim they need to be briefed that “white supremacy and other extremist ideology” are bad. But by giving that order, Secretary Austin can give the public appearance of doing…something.
The push to “react” to the January 6 event at the Capitol is concerning. Even the semantics are telling. The presumably apolitical Department of Defense described the American citizens who rioted at the Capitol as “extremists” and the event as “sedition and insurrection” — despite no one being convicted, much less charged, with those crimes when the statement was made. In particular, the media has also widely called the event an “insurrection,” which begs the question whether those who use that word actually know what it means.
Does anyone really believe a bare-chested man wearing a fur hat with horns and carrying a bullhorn thought he was going to overturn the government?
The rioters mugged for photos quickly posted to social media and stole things as souvenirs. There is no indication – nor any credible claim – that any of them actually intended to occupy the Capitol, much less institute a violent rebellion against the government. They left almost as quickly as they came.
Despite claims that weapons were involved, it appears not a single firearm was brandished by any rioter in the Capitol. The only weapon discharged was by a Capitol officer – reportedly (justifiably) against an unarmed woman.
Meanwhile, Capitol police officers appeared to wave protesters through the security fencing. Some protesters said they thought they were allowed to be in the building and, when confronted by police, left. While the crowd at Trump’s speech down the street numbered in the thousands, evidence seems to indicate there were only a few hundred in the Capitol. In an odd twist, the mainstream media seems loathe to attempt to quantify the Capitol protesters – almost as if to do so would undermine the narrative. Of the 300 or so now charged (a month after the event), the vast majority are charged only with the crime of being in the building. Those hardly seem the characteristics of an insurrection.
For comparison, armed groups attacked police with weapons and took over whole city blocks this past year and, with barriers and armed guards, declared themselves to be “autonomous” and no longer part of the local government. These “peaceful protesters” negotiated with city governments – and even won concessions – as if they were a sovereign state. Why was that not described as “insurrection” – using the actual definition of the word?
There is so much perceived (though not actual) pressure for members of government or society to “do something” that something may, indeed, be done – and that is worrisome. Some are so motivated by the “need” for action that any action that seems to quell the concern – even if that action may be constitutionally suspect – is justifiable.
Enter Mikey Weinstein.
Weinstein has made a living vilifying those he opposes with language that demands immediate and drastic action. Those he opposes – Christians in the US military – Weinstein has repeatedly called a “national security threat” and a “clear and present danger.” Both of those phrases, of course, are legal terms used to justify the highest and most severe response – including actions that might otherwise be construed as violating the US Constitution.
In his most recent accusations, Weinstein has not made any new claims. Rather, his current rant is that he’s ‘been saying this all along.’ As proof, he cites things like college football players praying and participation by members of the military in Operation Christmas Child. Consider that: Football players kneeling in the end zone and US troops supporting a charity are evidence of “unconstitutional influence and spread of fundamentalist Christian power and supremacy” and led to what Weinstein called a “failed coup d’état.” (Note, again, the extremist language that is absent any supporting evidence.)
Weinstein’s desire is clear: If he can achieve validation in this time of ‘woke’ demand (‘let no crisis go to waste’), he can accomplish in a day what he has failed to achieve in 15 years. If he can successfully strap hang onto an unrelated demand for social upheaval, he can finally put an end to those he claims are trying to institute “Plan B” against Jews in the United States today.
If Mikey Weinstein wins, religious freedom under the US Constitution loses.
The anarchy and criminal acts that occurred in the Capitol on January 6th were reprehensible. There is no evidence, however, that they were the acts of — or in any way connected to — military Christians or veterans who attended US Air Force Academy Bible studies or otherwise practiced their faith. Mikey Weinstein’s efforts to conflate Christians in the military exercising their religious freedom – under the protection of military regulations – with those who rioted at the Capitol is a naked attempt to ride a perceived wave of outrage to restrict the constitutional rights of wholly unrelated people whose faith he abhors.
In hindsight, there is no doubt the US Air Force Academy counts bigots and hate-filled extremists among its graduates. Mikey Weinstein, who graduated USAFA in 1977, is a living example.