Michael “Mikey” Weinstein recently demanded that Marine Corps Base Hawaii remove a sign that said “God bless our military, their families, and the civilians that work with them.” A few years ago, Weinstein’s shrill voice would have been the loudest in the room, and some military commanders would have bowed to him if only to try to make him go away — even if his demands might result in US troops’ religious liberties being restricted.
Now, however, many groups have banded together to defend military religious freedom against those, like Weinstein, who attack it. The Restore Military Religious Freedom coalition is made up of an astounding 26 different organizations dedicated to defending military religious freedom. Members of the group have had some significant successes — as when the Air Force re-published an article by Chaplain Kenneth Reyes that it had censored at Mikey Weinstein’s request. (Weinstein subsequently blamed the reversal on “pernicious…Christian[s].”)
When Weinstein’s group demanded the Marine sign come down, Daniel Briggs of the Alliance Defending Freedom quietly emailed (PDF) the same Marine commander to Read more
The US Marine Corps in Hawaii has said a sign saying “God bless our military” erected just after September 11, 2001, will remain as it is — despite the complaint and threats of Michael “Mikey” Weinstein.
Not only did the Marines reject Mikey Weinstein’s demands, the commander, Col Sean C. Killeen, very effectively shut Weinstein down [emphasis added] (PDF): Read more
Update: In an asinine announcement, Mikey Weinstein is now “demanding” that the Marine base erect six more signs, one each to Allah, Yahweh, Odin, Vishnu, goddess, and “there is no god.”
- It’s telling that Weinstein, who describes himself as a Jewish agnostic, demanded “Yahweh” when practicing Jews make a point of not using the names of God — meaning many Jewish personnel would find that sign offensive.
- Further, there is the obvious point that “Allah” is simply Arabic for “God,” making that sign simply a different language of the same text. (Why not ask for other languages?)
- Finally, the statement “there is no god” finds no resemblance with the current sign, which makes no exclusive statement.
Of course, all that ignores the fact the military’s decision to allow the presence of one does not require them to erect others. Weinstein’s “demand” is infantile and ignorant, but it seems to have gotten him the attention he wants.
A variety of news organizations are now reporting that Michael “Mikey” Weinstein’s Military Religious Freedom Foundation is demanding the removal of a sign on Marine Corps Base Hawaii, as provided by the MRFF:
The offending sign simply reads
God bless the military, their families and the civilians who work with them.
While Weinstein referred to this as the “latest breach,” it turns out it wasn’t Read more
After previously belittling and then speaking at the University of North Georgia, multiple headlines now claim Michael “Mikey” Weinstein is going to file a lawsuit:
The University of North Georgia has come under fire in the ongoing war on Christianity.
The Military Religious Freedom Foundation is suing the school, accusing it of holding a 9/11 memorial service that invoked the “Christian God…”
The media articles (including one from the student paper) fail to note that Weinstein has threatened to sue many people for many reasons over the years — including even this website — and has almost never followed through. (The few he did file were quickly dismissed.) Weinstein’s threats are empty, if they’re even threats at all. In this case, it wasn’t even Weinstein who made the threat: West Point dropout Blake Page Read more
US Rep Sam Johnson (R-Tx), a Vietnam era Air Force fighter pilot, wrote at the Christian Post that attacks on religious liberty in the United States “resemble my time in the Hanoi Hilton.”
You see, I endured painful torture at the hands of communists. I brutally experienced what it’s like to truly lose the privilege to worship as you see fit. As a prisoner of war in Vietnam for almost seven years, more than half of that time in solitary confinement, I withered away in a cellblock so isolating it could only be called Alcatraz.
Referring to a report by Senator Ted Cruz, Johnson says Read more
FoxNews reports that last Friday Michael “Mikey” Weinstein’s “charity” once again attacked the Air Force for erecting a Nativity scene on an Air Force Base. Two years ago, it was Travis AFB in California. This year, they targeted Shaw AFB, SC:
The MRFF’s Paul Loebe wrote in a statement that since the display was not erected near a chapel, it was illegal.
“It was very sectarian in nature and a direct violation of the U.S. Constitution as well as a blatant violation of Air Force Instruction 1-1, Section 2.11,” he said.
Weinstein presumably called the office of LtGen Richard Harding, The JAG of the Air Force, and getting no relief there, called Shaw AFB via their Command Post.
Most civilians who call an Air Force base will probably be directed to Public Affairs, because it is the job of PA to help military commanders interact with the public and ensure the correct message is conveyed. Weinstein was transferred to the Commander’s office, where an “office assistant” reportedly spoke for the Air Force. The assistant told Weinstein the display was erected by “a volunteer group” and it was being taken down. Loebe was free to interpret this as the Air Force agreeing with the MRFF position: Read more
A long-running US military tradition is the POW/MIA table. While often a discrete event at formal functions such as military dinings-in, many dining facilities maintain a continuous POW/MIA table within their facilities. There are actually many variations on the display, though one of the more common ones follows:
The table is round – to show our everlasting concern for our missing men (and women).
The tablecloth is white – symbolizing the purity of their motives when answering the call to duty.
The single red rose, displayed in a vase, reminds us of Read more
In what is likely a continuation of an action by the Military Religious Freedom Coalition, the Alliance Defending Freedom has filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request seeking to learn how and why the Air Force chose to censor an article on faith written by Chaplain (LtCol) Kenneth Reyes. The ADF notes Col Duffy’s decision — based explicitly on someone’s “offense” — has wider implications than just one web posting by Chaplain Reyes.
The FOIA also seeks to know the extent of the relationship between Col Brian Duffy, the Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson commander, and the MRFF — namely, Read more