On Monday US Air Force Academy Superintendent LtGen Jay Silveria appeared at the Anti-Defamation League’s “Never is Now” Summit on Anti-Semitism, where he spoke on diversity. According to a USAFA press release, he accepted an award for his response to the racial slurs written at the USAFA Prep School — which are now known to have been a hoax.
Oddly, the press release doesn’t Read more
In light of the recent revelation that an African-American Cadet Candidate at the USAFA Prep School “faked” racial harassment on himself and his peers, it’s worth remembering another Air Force Academy cadet who was once accused of faking prejudiced attacks on himself.
That would be then-Cadet Michael “Mikey” Weinstein.
In 1973, Cadet Fourth Class Mikey Weinstein was a member of CS-36, the Pink Panthers. It was there, in his first semester, that he says he experienced the anti-Semitism that he now says formed the foundation for his activism in later life. That harassment reportedly came in the form of notes taped to or slid under his dorm room door.
The short version: The harassing notes were investigated, Mikey Weinstein was accused of being the author of the notes, and Weinstein then punched an active duty officer investigating the incident. The entire incident mysteriously went away after Weinstein had an 0200 rendezvous in the woods with a cloaked figure from the Anti-Defamation League.
In 2005, just as Mikey Read more
Despite recent scandals regarding the DoD’s alleged classification of Christians as “extremists” — including an Army-wide standdown in Equal Opportunity training over the controversies — the DoD says it will continue to use the Southern Poverty Law Center as a “reference” in its Equal Opportunity training.
A DoD spokesman answered that while the agency will remove “hate groups” information provided by the SPLC from the training materials used at its Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI), the DoD will continue to use the SPLC’s data in its “non-federal reference material” for DEOMI.
The SPLC — whose work has been specifically cited in recent Army briefings — is one of several “non-Federal” sources the DoD plans to continue using:
“Some of the non-Federal entities used to inform DEOMI’s training,” said Christensen, “include: Anti-Defamation League; Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism; Know Gangs, Political Research Associates, Read more
The Deseret News carries its own commentary by Amy Choate-Nielsen on the recent changes to the DoD’s rules requiring religious accommodation. Interestingly, it uses two Jewish Soldiers as the central points of its article — even though the two have nothing to do with the policy changes:
For [Michael] Handman, the new NDAA law comes too late. Five years ago, the private was called derogatory names because of his faith, ordered to remove his yarmulke and rebuked for reading Jewish canon. Then, a few days after his letter home, on Sept. 24, 2008, Handman was lured into a laundry room and beaten to the point of unconsciousness, an Associated Press story says.
That story was discussed in detail here at the time. Retired US Read more
Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel “blasted” nine states whose National Guard bureaus have refused to process requests for homosexual benefits at their state facilities. In his Oct 31 speech to the Anti-Defamation League, Hagel said
several states today are refusing to issue these IDs to same-sex spouses at National Guard facilities. Not only does this violate the states’ obligations under federal law, but their actions have created hardship and inequality by forcing couples to travel long distances to federal military bases to obtain the ID cards they’re entitled to.
This is wrong. It causes division among our ranks, and it furthers prejudice, which DoD has fought to extinguish, as has the ADL.
The situation is intriguing, because by calling these states “wrong,” Secretary Hagel appears to be calling the citizens who voted state laws into place “wrong.” If a state has a constitutional amendment that refuses to recognize a homosexual relationship — an amendment passed by the citizens of the state — it naturally follows that the offices of the state, including its National Guard, would adhere to those laws.
Secretary Hagel continued: Read more
Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel credited the Anti-Defamation League with a turnabout at the US Air Force Academy with respect to religion:
The Department of Defense is proud – very proud – to have worked with the ADL to make our military more open, and more equal, and more just. One example of this historic partnership is at the Air Force Academy, where only a few years ago there were troubling accusations of Read more
The Colorado Springs Gazette, local to the US Air Force Academy, carried a variety of positive comments from participants in USAFA’s second Religious Respect Conference. In fact, USAFA chaplains are advocating for their programs to be implemented Air Force-wide. In “AFA religious respect program could soon go service-wide,” reporter Erin Prater noted
Chaplains hope to transition the Religious Respect Training Program throughout the Air Force as soon as possible, chaplain Maj. Shawn Menchion said…
David Oringderff, a local Wiccan leader, had high praise for USAFA’s efforts: Read more