A fascinating story at the Boston Globe recalls the steps taken to ensure the religious freedom of deployed US Sailors — in 1956:
Elihu Schimmel…was responsible for the medical care of men on dozens of ships. Often he had to be transported — by helicopter, by launch, by seaplane — from the Lindenwald to another vessel to see a patient.
But with Rosh Hashana (the Jewish New Year) and Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement) just around the corner, Schimmel was wondering whether a few men could be moved in the other direction. Specifically, a few Jewish men: enough to assemble a minyan, a quorum of 10, so that services could be held on the most sacred days of the Jewish year.
Schimmel figured he had nothing to lose by asking — and both Read more
Mikey Weinstein May Demand Colored Crosses on Air Force Uniforms
It would seem Michael “Mikey” Weinstein wants to the US military to segregate US troops by their religion.
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base has yet again become the target of a complaint by Weinstein. (The frequency isn’t due to Wright-Patt’s behavior, but the presence of Mikey Weinstein’s friends and family.) This time, Wright-Patt did precisely what Mikey Weinstein wanted — and he still demanded “punishment” for people’s “dangerous violations of Air Force regulations.”
The offense? The Wing Chaplain’s office sent out an email to the Wing.
The core of the email was simple, as forwarded to Weinstein by a sympathizer: Read more
In its ongoing efforts to garner sympathy and support, the LGBT movement continues to put a “face” on its agenda, using US troops. Most recently, the Washington Post (repeated at the Stars and Stripes) reported on US Naval Academy Midshipman Regan Kibby, a female who entered the Academy after a lifetime of “not [feeling] like a girl” and decided to become a male — even though such gender confusion/dysphoria was an explicitly disqualifying condition when she entered the military.
For Kibby to be told she could serve openly — and then to have that decision reversed — is certainly frustrating (though she was the one to join the military in violation of the original policies to begin with).
More interesting, though, is the total absence of Washington Post, Stars and Stripes, or military Read more
The following account is provided anonymously, and certain details have been intentionally obscured to protect the identities of those involved.
I walked out of a church service last Sunday.
It wasn’t because I had a crying child or a vibrating cellphone. It was because when the singing stopped, the pastor who stood up in front of the congregation to deliver the sermon represented religious beliefs I disagreed with.
Now why, you might ask, was I even at a church whose pastor didn’t hold the same beliefs as me?
Easy: I’m in the US military.
Unfortunately, we don’t always have the luxury of “choosing” our church. Other times, we might choose the chapel on the post, yet watch as the pastor — the chaplain — changes from one year (or even one Sunday) to the next. And every service member will go through the process of moving, which means a new “job,” a new home, and a new church — every couple of years.
The way some people seem to tell the story, the military is being run (or overrun) Read more
In an interesting piece at Military.com, US Navy PO2 Guldeep “Geena” Kaur Sidhu describes what it’s like to be a Sikh woman serving in the US military, noting:
In today’s politically charged and increasingly globalized world, it’s more important than ever to be open to the beliefs and cultures of those around you.
Kaur notes there is virtue in promoting and highlighting religious liberty and the values of religious belief:
I believe that it will lead us to greater unity. By better understanding the identities of our brothers and sisters in arms, we can become closer as a unified force. I hope that the changes brought about by this new directive will serve to educate my fellow service members on the Sikh religion, and how closely it aligns with the American values we’re fighting for day in and day out.
As has been noted in the past, there has been Read more
Hemant Mehta recently stumbled all over himself trying to say that the Southern Poverty Law Center’s designation of “hate groups” is fine when it comes to Christians, but not when it comes to atheists (something he first tried to do last November).
Just a few days ago Mehta defended the SPLC when Guidestar, a charity review site, began including the SPLC’s ‘opinion’ on charities it claims are “hate groups”. Within the conversation, Mehta appropriated the SPLC’s “hate group” designation for some Christian groups. When those groups complained they were being targeted for their beliefs, Mehta said “that’s a lie” and celebrated the idea they would lose charitable donations for the designation. (Guidestar subsequently dropped the categorization under pressure.)
Then, the news broke that Maajid Nawaz is suing the SPLC. He’s a former Read more
Every now and then someone critiques the idea of there being a “Christian Fighter Pilot.” For some (generally non-Christians), it is the perceived “oxymoron” of being a follower of Christ while simultaneously being a military combatant. Many who are trying to find something to gripe about critique the idea that there needs to be a “descriptor” to discriminate about types of fighter pilots. Why not just be fighter pilots?
In fairness, though, Christians haven’t been the only ones to “celebrate” their contribution to the military mission — or even being a fighter pilot. For example, a few years ago, the Atheist Fighter Pilot made a short-lived showing here, and religious groups and organizations have sprung up for a variety of faiths.
Apparently, pilots can be known for their faith, their lack of faith…
…and how they like to have sex.
This past weekend, one of the participants in the Capital Pride Read more
Critics have come out in force against US Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt) after he said he would not support President Trump’s nominee for the deputy director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, Russell Vought. Sanders’ reason? Vought has Christian beliefs, which he expressed in a column defending Wheaton College in 2016 in which he said that “Muslims stand condemned”:
Muslims do not simply have a deficient theology. They do not know God because they have rejected Jesus Christ his Son, and they stand condemned.
In his questioning during the confirmation hearing for Vought’s nomination to the OMB, Sanders asked:
Do you believe people in the Muslim religion stand condemned? Is that your view?
…I don’t know how many Muslims there are in America. Maybe a couple million. Are you suggesting that these people stand condemned? What about Jews? Do they stand condemned too?
In your judgment, do you think that people who are not Christians are going to be condemned?
I would simply say, Mr. Chairman that this nominee is really not someone who this country is supposed to be about.
Atheists, liberals, and Christians alike have condemned Read more