Tag Archives: rco

Report: Hostility to Religion in US Military

The Liberty Institute recently published a 2014 edition of a 400-page report entitled “Undeniable: The Survey of Hostility to Religion in America” (PDF). Sections I, II, and III are “attacks” in the public arena, schoolhouse, and against churches and other religious ministries, respectively.

For the first time, the report now includes a dedicated Section IV: “Attacks in the Military.”

Similar in theme to the “Clear and Present Danger” published by the Family Research Council, the Liberty Institute report includes a list of 46 incidents representative of the hostility toward religion within the US military [emphasis added]:

Hostility once unthinkable, such as the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs telling grieving families as they arrive at their loved one’s funeral site that they may not have a religious funeral service, is becoming increasingly routine. Another line of hostility is a new wave of lawsuits attempting to eliminate all symbolism that touches on the numinous from our nation’s veterans memorials…

Religious freedom in the military is protected by the U.S. Constitution, Department Read more

Weinstein’s Imbalanced View of So Help Me God

Michael “Mikey” Weinstein penned half of a pro/con debate for the local Colorado Springs Gazette regarding the presence of “so help me God” in the USAFA Cadet Honor Oath.  Weinstein boils his argument down to this:

Removing those words from the published oath does nothing to change [cadets’ First Amendment] right [sic].

In balance, however, if the removal of those words affects not the First Amendment rights of believers, why would the presence of those words affect the rights of others?  Weinstein fails to justify his call for a change.

In one respect, Weinstein’s premise seems to be correct:  No religious Read more

Congressmen Call Air Force Hostile to Religion Again

Updated with BrigGen Lee quote on Michael Weinstein.

Sixty-six members of Congress called on Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta to investigate the US Air Force for an environment of “hostility towards religious freedom” — the fourth time in recent months they’ve made such an accusation.

The Congressional letter (PDF) essentially said that Air Force Chief of Staff General Norton Schwartz’s September policy letter had created a “chilling effect” on religious freedom as Airmen attempted to comply with his guidance:

The decisions that have been made in reliance upon this policy go beyond what is required by the US Constitution.  The First Amendment prohibits the establishment of religion; however, the mere discussion of religion or reference to God certainly does not rise to that level.

The Congressmen said the Air Force had “capitulated” to organizations Read more

Air Force Solves Rapid Capabilities Office Patch Controversy

The US Air Force was previously taken to task by Congress when it removed the Latin word for “god” from the Rapid Capabilities Office patch — because an atheist complained.  (In fact, Rep Randy Forbes went so far as to say Air Force Chief of Staff General Norton Schwartz “has been as bad as I have seen…in defending religious liberties.”

It seems the Air Force solved the patch problem:  Read more

Rep Randy Forbes Calls on Air Force to Put God Back in Motto

US Representative Randy Forbes (R-Va) has written a letter (PDF) signed by 35 members of the House asking the Air Force restore a unit’s motto that was changed after an atheist’s complaint.  The incident to which Rep Forbes is referring was actually first reported on ChristianFighterPilot.com, with the Religion Clause and the ADF Alliance Alert subsequently citing this site.

As noted three weeks ago, the USAF Rapid Capabilities Office responded to “needling” from former Army Captain Jason Torpy, an atheist, and changed its motto from “Doing God’s work with other people’s money” to “Doing miracles with other people’s money.”

The letter, addressed to Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley and Air Force Chief of Staff General Norton Schwartz, says:

It has come to our attention that the US Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office (RCO) has modified the logo on its official patch to remove its reference to “God,” following a complaint from Read more

Trijicon Sights Increase Number of Expert Marksman Marines

Though at one point it was maligned for publicizing its Christianity, optical sight maker Trijicon has consistently been praised for its world-class rifle sights.

More to the point, a recent US Marine recruit training company graduated having qualified using only Trijicon’s AN/PVQ-31 Rifle Combat Optics, as opposed to the “iron sights” traditionally used.  The result?

“I can tell you Bravo Company had 30 percent more Read more