Air Force Rebuffs Mikey Weinstein Demand for General Olson’s Court-Martial

The Air Force Times reports that the US Air Force has “rebuffed” the demand by Michael “Mikey” Weinstein to court-martial Major General Craig Olson, who spoke at the National Day of Prayer earlier this month:

The Air Force has decided that Olson did not break Air Force Instruction 1-1 by speaking at the “congressionally-supported event,” said service spokesman Lt. Col. Pete Hughes.

“His remarks were his own personal opinions and do not represent the views of the United States Air Force,” Hughes said in an email Thursday to Air Force Times.

The article quotes both Weinstein and his assistant Chris Rodda as Continue reading

Mikey Weinstein Calls for Court-Martial of General Craig Olson

Update: Franklin Graham came out in General Olson’s defense, while Weinstein doubled down, saying

Olson was “not simply a harmless howdy-doody/’Stepford Wife/Ned Flanders type of character delivering homilies and platitudes to his assembled flock of like-minded fools.” He was, instead, part of a “Christian triumphalist” plan to subdue America, Weinstein wrote.

Michael “Mikey” Weinstein published a press release last week calling for the court-martial of Major General Craig Olson, who was the representative for the US military at the National Day of Prayer on May 7th.

You can watch the video of General Olson’s 20 minute talk at the National Day of Prayer courtesy of the MRFF, which recorded the broadcast and uploaded it here. In it, General Olson says:

I’ve been with fellow redeemed Christians who happen to be educators, who happen to be businessmen, who happen to be medical professionals, who happen to be public officers. I’m just a Christian who happens to be in the Air Force. So we all have things we do but we’re believers, when we love Christ and we love this nation. That’s the point of America. We get to be out and about in America as believers in the various places God appoints us.

Gen Olson spoke repeatedly of having experiences that reminded him of his reliance upon God. He spoke of the need for prayer for our military.

This is what Weinstein said in response:  Continue reading

Navy Boot Camp Reinstates Some Chapel Services

The Navy Recruit Training Command has reportedly allowed some civilians to return to the base to lead religious services for recruits. Not all of the previously banned leaders were allowed to return as religious leaders because, according to the Navy, uniformed leaders were found instead — which the Navy said met the priority guidance on who was supposed to help lead services:

Following the sudden dismissal of a half-dozen religious leaders last month, commanders at the Great Lakes naval training center began the process Thursday of inviting back civilian volunteers to serve recruits who are Unitarian Universalists, Baha’is, Buddhists and Christian Scientists.

In the meantime, a spokesman said, the Navy Continue reading

Military Freedoms and “Good Order and Discipline”

Tony Carr, a retired C-17 squadron commander, has begun to make a name for himself in his public commentary on Air Force issues on his John Q. Public blog. He speaks in terms other Airmen recognize — and often in a tone that others wish they were allowed to muster.

He recently took retired General Roger Brady to task for the General’s dressing-down of Airmen who dared to contact their congressmen about the future of the A-10. The General had written a letter that was published in the Air Force Times, and Carr highlights an interesting point. While criticizing the Airmen’s decision to talk to their congressmen — a point he says General Mark Welsh agreed is a right — General Brady explicitly said  Continue reading

Blog: Clergy Not Required to Perform Same-Sex Marriage, Except Chaplains

Much ado was recently made about Supreme Court justices questioning whether clergy would face sanction if they refused to perform same-sex marriages. In short, the concern was dismissed out of hand.

Interestingly, Jay Bookman, blogging at the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, said the same thing — but he made a significant footnote [formatting original]:

Under the First Amendment, no one, with the possible exception of military chaplains**, can ever be required by government to conduct religious services that are contrary to their faith. That’s just elementary, and while I’m no fan of Scalia, I’m still surprised to see him offering objections so ill-informed that would be better suited to an email-chain than to Supreme Court debate.

Bookman’s footnote:  Continue reading

MRFF: Military Required to Have Chaplains for Everyone

Michael “Mikey” Weinstein was recently interviewed about the Navy’s decision to ban civilian volunteers from leading religious services during boot camp. In the course of the interview, he was asked:

Host: Is the military required to provide a leader of some sort, to make sure that whatever somebody’s faith is, there’s somebody there — a chaplain, a volunteer, there — is that something that’s required…?

Weinstein: Yes, yes. That is a requirement from the chaplain’s corps.

Weinstein’s response digressed into converting people from one faith to another, so the hosts asked the question again:  Continue reading

Chaplains Group Joins MRFF in Complaint Against Navy

Retired US Army Chaplain (Col) Ron Crews of the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty recently teamed up with Michael “Mikey” Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation to send the Navy Recruit Training Command a joint letter (PDF) complaining about the Navy’s decision to ban civilian volunteers from leading religious services:

We have testified before the same Congressional panels. We have spoken out on the same incidents in the services. And, we are always on opposing sides, but in this instance it is easy for us both to say that the Navy went too far and is clearly in violation of the Constitutional religious liberty rights of American sailors at the Recruit Training Command.

While the MRFF said pigs must be flying for the MRFF and the Chaplain Alliance to be working together, it’s really not that dramatic. For one thing, Weinstein Continue reading

US Court on Homosexuality…and Polygamy

“If it is constitutionally irrational to stand by the man-woman definition of marriage, it must be constitutionally irrational to stand by the monogamous definition of marriage…”

The attorneys arguing in support of same-sex marriage could not explain why marriage was still justifiably monogamous, because  Continue reading

Pentagon Hosts Sikh New Year Celebration

The Pentagon recently joined with a group of Sikhs in celebrating Vaisakhi and the Sikh New Year. Pentagon Chaplain (LtCol) Claude Brittian spoke of the importance of religious freedom:

“I believe that for me to be able to celebrate as a Christian, then I must stand up for the rights of others to celebrate in regards to their faith,” Brittian [said]…

“I am a firm believer that I should not be the one who is explaining Sikhism to the rest of the world,” he said. “I believe that those who practice their faith should have the opportunity to share their faith.”

Somewhat ironically, Sikhs aren’t permitted to serve in the US military, at least not while maintaining the articles Continue reading

MRFF Joins Lawsuit Against Memorial Cross

The Bladensburg Cross, ca 1920-1950.

In what is presumably an effort to prove that it is not “anti-Christian,” Michael “Mikey” Weinstein’s MRFF has joined a lawsuit (PDF) with the American Humanist Association demanding the removal of the Bladensburg, MD, “Peace Cross.” The Peace Cross was erected in 1925 by the American Legion.  Weinstein says (PDF)

The Bladensburg Cross is a Christian symbol on government property…

Because the Bladensburg Cross is a Christian symbol, it sends a message to all of our non-Christian MRFF clients that they are outsiders and unwelcome in the Town of Bladensburg. This message is particularly harmful in the context of a war memorial. It sends Continue reading

Chaplain Becomes CGO of the Year, Mikey Weinstein Target

US Air Force Chaplain (Capt) Sonny Hernandez was recently selected as the AFLCMC IMA CGO of the year.

Two days after the announcement, Michael “Mikey” Weinstein slammed the chaplain as “homophobic [and] anti-Semitic.”

Why Weinstein was monitoring the AFLCMC CGO ranking is a mystery. It’s possible he knew of Chaplain Hernandez from the chaplain’s time at USAFA, which was his last assignment until November of last year. Weinstein also has family in the Wright-Patterson area, which is where the 445th Airlift Wing is based and where the announcement would have been made.

Finally, Weinstein came to his conclusions about Chaplain Hernandez from viewing the publicly available sermons he gave to his home church. (As an IMA Reservist, the Chaplain’s primary job is civilian.)

Weinstein slams the chaplain for “putrid, bigoted Continue reading

Military Equal Opportunity Says Bible, Constitution Cause Sexism

In a now widely reported incident, a Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute online training course was pulled last month after a reporter made an inquiry about a slide that said the Bible, the US Constitution, and the Declaration of Independence “allow sexism to continue”:

The military’s Equal Opportunity channels have had a number of high-profile missteps, with most being dismissed as “isolated” incidents of Continue reading

President, US Marines Celebrate National Day of Prayer

US Marines at Cherry Point hosted a National Day of Prayer breakfast (a slight combination of the National Day of Prayer and the National Prayer breakfast, it would seem) last week. The Marines’ commander, Col Chris Pappas, “spoke of the importance of faith” to a crowd of some 200 attendees:  Continue reading