Members of the US military aren’t permitted to engage in partisan politics in uniform, nor are they supposed to permit others use them for that purpose. They are also not permitted to “use contemptuous words” against the Commander-in-Chief — in or out of uniform.*
Unless, of course, they’re LGBTQ.
For years the American Military Partner Association blatantly paraded uniformed military members around in support of its political agenda, and it did so even while engaging in outright political lobbying. Its successor, the oddly named “Modern Military Association of America” (apparently “modern” now means non-heterosexual), now Read more
Howard Friedman’s Religion Clause reported on the summary judgment granted in In re Navy Chaplaincy, a very long-running lawsuit alleging the US Navy chaplaincy was essentially rigged for liturgical/Catholic chaplains. The DC federal district court ruled against the chaplains.
However, given how many years the lawsuit has been running its course, it is worth noting who is leading the US Navy chaplaincy now:
In fact, the rest of the US military chaplaincy leadership reads much the same. With one possible exception, the list reads like a who’s who of conservative and Read more
Official releases documented the trip of US Air Force Chief of Chaplains (MajGen) Dondi Costin to South Korea last month:
Chaplain (Maj. Gen.) Dondi Costin, the U.S. Air Force Chief of Chaplains, and more than a dozen Air Force chaplains and chaplain assistants from U.S. Pacific Air Forces spent time with U.S. Airmen and their South Korean counterparts in a weeklong long visit to Daegu Korea.
The chaplains and their assistants worked Read more
Chaplain (MajGen) Dondi Costin, US Air Force Chief of Chaplains, spoke at a spiritual resiliency luncheon at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, in March — and he highlighted the practical value of the Sermon on the Mount:
To bring awareness on the importance of spiritual wellness, Maj. Gen. Dondi Costin, the Chief of Chaplains Headquarters U.S. Air Force…spoke of how the Sermon on the Mount, generally considered as the foundation for ethical conduct, relates to every day life.
“The thing about this entire speech, which Read more
After Michael “Mikey” Weinstein recently decried the National Prayer Breakfasts at both Fort Jackson and Whiteman AFB, one might have thought US troops were stumbling over each other to beg for his help in the face of religious oppression and pancakes.
In actuality, National Prayer Breakfasts are happening at military facilities around the country — entirely without incident. Even the ones Weinstein complained about so boisterously occurred without so much as a ripple.
Why the disconnect? Aside from the obvious answer that Weinstein doesn’t always tell the truth, the simple fact is US service members aren’t coming to Weinstein in droves to complain about these events — or anything else, for that matter — despite Weinstein’s claims to the contrary.
Rather, Mikey Weinstein finds out about an event — even if just from a simple internet news alert — socializes it among his followers to create “complainants”, and then tries to ride the complaints about the event for publicity (and his personal benefit, of course).
In other words, the “complaints” are essentially manufactured. But for Mikey Read more
In what has become a predictable annual event, Michael “Mikey” Weinstein has again begun lodging his regular complaints about prayer breakfasts/luncheons being hosted on military bases or for military audiences around the country.
In January, Weinstein demanded Fort Jackson drop its invitation to Kenneth Copeland, because Mikey Weinstein disapproved of Copeland’s theology.
This month, Weinstein is demanding Whiteman AFB remove the commander’s “endorsement” from the wing’s annual prayer breakfast event announcement.
In the former example, the Army rightfully ignored Weinstein, and the event occurred as planned, despite Weinstein’s desperate pleas.
In the latter example, Weinstein is Read more
At an “undisclosed location,” US Air Force Chief of Chaplains (MGen) Dondi Costin led an interfaith Thanksgiving service noting, as he often does, the religious freedom that protects the rights of US troops to exercise their faiths [emphasis added]:
“The very first amendment [in the Bill of Rights] is that every American has the right to freely exercise their faith,” said Maj. Gen. Dondi Costin, Air Force Chief of Chaplains. “From the [beginning] our founding fathers understood that part of being American is allowing everybody to live in the way that their God would have them to live.”
Sounds like something that needs to be relearned in Read more
“Spiritually strong Airmen…tend to be strong assets to their units and commanders.”
An article out of Robins AFB, Georgia, highlighted an Air Force campaign called Faith Works, which focuses on “Freedom, faith, and ministry.” Amazingly enough, it promotes the virtue of religion — based on science [emphasis added]:
The campaign, Faith Works, is based on a body of research demonstrating the positive effects religion and spirituality can have on improving health in every domain…Faith Works offers a new perspective on an old technique, focusing on the tangible, earth-bound benefits associated with developing and practicing a strong faith, religion or spirituality…
Dr. Tyler VanderWeele…and Dr. Harold Koenig…have identified physical evidence linking the practice of faith and religion to individual resiliency.
[Their] research shows that Americans who attend religious services at least once a week have a 20 percent to 30 percent reduced mortality rate over a 15-year period. In terms of mental health, regular church-goers also demonstrate more optimism and lower rates of depression.
It is a fascinating — and bold — initiative that was led Read more