Michael “Mikey” Weinstein and his research assistant, Chris Rodda, recently criticized the presence of military symbols on products sold by Shields of Strength, an online jewelry/accessory store that sells various religious and patriotic-themed items, including some with Bible verses. (While Weinstein has claimed he never acts without a complaint from a member of the military, this complaint appears to have been generated by a FoxNews article and nothing more.) The duo took specific aim at the SoS line of dog tags, which combine Bible verses with the emblems of the US Armed Forces. From Chris Rodda [emphasis added]:
The problem? The use of official Armed Forces emblems and logos on blatantly religious items like these dog tags is not only an unconstitutional government endorsement of religion, but also violates the Department of Defense’s regulation on what items can and cannot be licensed to contain the official DoD emblems and logos.
The first accusation is laughable. No one thinks the government is establishing or endorsing a religion because a private company produces dog tags with Bible verses on them. The reference to Read more
US Army Major Ray Bradley wants military records to be altered so he can express his religion as “humanist,” which is not currently an option.
[Bradley] can’t be designated as a humanist on his official records or dog tags, although he can be classified as an atheist.
The distinction may not seem like a large one to those unfamiliar with humanism, but the Fort Bragg-based officer says it’s the equivalent of being told that “Christian” is an acceptable designation, but not “Catholic.”
“Humanism is a philosophy that guides a person,” Bradley said. “It’s more than just a stamp of what you’re not.”
As to the confusion about whether atheists are humanists, or vice versa: Read more
The Killeen Daily Herald, local to Fort Hood, notes the July death of US Army CPL Frank Gross, who was killed in Afghanistan one month into his deployment. CPL Gross had a consistent motivation:
Cpl. Frank Gross wrote the same Bible verse, Colossians 3:23, inside his baseball caps throughout his high school and college pitching career: “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.”
“Basically, whatever you do, do it to the best of your ability,” his mother, Toni Gross, said…”That was his life verse.”
Notably, Gross had not only a Bachelors degree but also Read more