Statements released by Osama bin Laden have validated the fears of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation’s Michael Weinstein, whose organization has repeatedly claimed that associations of Christianity with the US military provide “propaganda” and “recruiting tools” to America’s adversaries, endangering US troops and the mission of the nation. Read more
Tag Archives: pagan
The US Air Force Academy closed its investigation into the placement of the shape of a cross at a pagan site on the Academy grounds. No new information was apparently determined, nor was any action taken. To their credit, the Colorado Springs Gazette printed the most accurate description so far of the incident, saying
The cross – consisting of two railroad ties propped against a boulder…
Other organizations and individuals had inaccurately implied a ‘large cross’ was ‘made of railroad ties’ and ‘carried to the site’ to be ‘erected in the center’ of the pagan circle. The Gazette left out only the facts the two boards were not connected and were already on the site before the incident occurred.
In noting the end of its investigation, the Air Force refused to characterize the incident as a hate crime: Read more
A few weeks ago the Colorado Springs Gazette published a short email excerpt from the designated pagan leader at the USAF Academy, TSgt Brandon Longcrier. In the quote, the Gazette highlighted Longcrier’s fear for his cadets in the face of what he described as a “hate crime” (the crossed shoe boards at the pagan circle).
Not much later, the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, to whom the letter was addressed, published a series of letters it had received on the subject. The authors’ names were redacted, but in one the author clearly identified himself as the person who found the cross at the pagan site and took “the picture,” which is known to be Longcrier. In addition, it includes the quotes from the Gazette article attributed to him.
Longcrier’s message reiterates the “hate crime” and criticizes the Air Force Academy for its response. More interesting, however, is his attitude toward the cadets — particularly those of the Christian Read more
A blog by a USAFA cadet reaffirms prior comments that the new pagan circle at the US Air Force Academy is in an area frequented for other purposes, and even has a unique spiritual history.
The area is collectively referred to as the “LZ,” and the clearing has been used–for years–as a station on the hill for which to conduct “training” for fourth class cadets. The author of Wonderings and Wanderings has a post on the 14th of January that says his squadron used the LZ for training–3 days before the “cross incident” occurred (which, incidentally, was also a long weekend). At the time, no one knew Read more
A group recently called for Congress to “probe” the US Air Force Academy after allegations of religious “insensitivity”—but not likely the insensitivity of which most immediately think. After years of criticism that USAFA has favored Christianity, and in the wake of news that a cross had been found at the newly created pagan circle at the Academy, the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights is calling for a probe to investigate “insensitivity to Christians” at the US Air Force Academy.
Catholic League President Bill Donohue decried the military’s characterization of the cross incident at the pagan circle–in which two railroad ties were picked up and laid against a rock–which Academy Superintendent LtGen Michael Gould seemed Read more
This incident has been so mis-reported that it was initially just ignored; however, when General Gould published a statement agreeing that this incident has been “sensationalized,” he gave credence to the view that this situation is being grossly mischaracterized, and that people are inappropriately using it for their personal advancement. An analysis thus follows…
Despite the positive hullabaloo over the US Air Force Academy pagan circle, Michael Weinstein’s Military Religious Freedom Foundation has now denounced the placement of a cross at the site, an act that occurred before the recent positive press reports. Though the incident took place several weeks ago, the MRFF appeared to time the press release to counter the recent spate of “good news” about religious tolerance at USAFA.
For the record, it should go without saying that Read more
The US Air Force Academy cadet chapel is expanding to the outdoors. Along with its Christian, Jewish, Islamic, and Buddhist chapel areas, the cadet chapel will now officially include a “pagan circle” located on a hill just above the chapel grounds.
The Academy pagan group is led by USAF TSgt Brandon Longcrier, an NCO who works in the astronautics lab within the academic faculty. Longcrier was effusive in his praise of the Academy and the Chaplains in their support for his efforts, which included pagan rituals for Basic Cadet trainees over the summer.
“There really haven’t been any obstacles for the new circle,” he said. “The chaplain’s office has been 100-percent supportive.”
According to Longcrier, the pagans meet during each Monday night (chapel-sponsored SPIRE meets that night).
It would appear that those who claim the US military is officially “Christian” are losing any vestiges of evidence to support their claim.
While some seem to imply that only Christians associate their religious ideology with their military service, public examples on all sides demonstrate that is not the case.
A Pennsylvania paper recently covered a local story in which a group of pagan veterans are encouraging those with similar beliefs to, in their words, “come out of the broom closet.” Charles Arnold is the “‘national commander’ of the Pagan Veterans of the United States,” which he formed earlier this year. He says pagan veterans “number Read more