An Associated Press article repeated at the local Gazette and other sources says of the US Air Force Academy:
Religious tolerance has improved dramatically since allegations five years ago that evangelical Christians harassed cadets who didn’t share their faith.
The article even quotes critic Michael Weinstein, who sued the Air Force for incidents at the Academy, agreeing with the assessment:
This is the first time we feel positive about things there.
While the initial complaints were that the Air Force was foisting Christianity on its cadets, the Air Force investigation instead determined that the situation was far simpler: cadets of minority faiths did not feel appropriately accommodated as was permissible under military regulations. Thus, the Air Force addressed Read more
The Washington Post chronicles the story of Colin Banks, a high school senior who dreams of going to the US Air Force Academy and becoming a fighter pilot.
While the article has the unfortunate tendency of focusing on race, Banks’ story is a good one. He has an avid interest in all things aeronautic and has an unbelievably supportive mother. His mother has taken him to Air Force Day at the National Air and Space Museum’s Dulles annex (a pilot heaven, and home of the space shuttle Enterprise), researched Air Force jobs, and drives him to his flight lessons.
As a result of a Tuskegee Airman program called Youth in Aviation, Read more
It is true that military chapels are supposed to be, in some respects, “religiously neutral.” The objective of the regulations governing chapels is that any faith group be able to use them for their spiritual needs. As chapel space is often limited, many times a single building, or even a single room, must meet the needs of all faith groups.
The military academies have long been an exception. The main floor of the US Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel, which turned 50 just a few months ago, is overtly Christian, with a huge, sculpted metal cross hanging from the ceiling. Rather than having “shared spaces,” the USAFA Chapel Read more
Three military academy cadets have been selected as Rhodes Scholars. This will provide them the opportunity to study for a Masters degree at Oxford University. All three of the cadets are women; two from the US Military Academy (West Point) are from New York and Washington. One from the US Air Force Academy is from California. That the academies represent nearly 10% of the Rhodes Scholars speaks to the prestige of the education at the military institutions.
Since the intent upon graduation from a military academy is to serve as a military officer, opportunities to do other things are limited. Read more
There is frequently a heated debate over which are better: Air Force or Navy pilots, with the corollary comparison of whether the US Air Force Academy or the Naval Academy is the better place to go to become a pilot.
There are legitimate arguments for each side, of course. One of the main points for those seeking to be fighter pilots is the obvious fact of numbers; there are simply more fighter aircraft in the Air Force than there are in the Navy.
Now there’s a new point: at least the Air Force doesn’t force its new officers into submarine duty. Read more
National Public Radio (NPR) recently reported that the Buddhist Chapel at the Air Force Academy, a room in the lower floors of the iconic Cadet Chapel, “represents tolerance” of beliefs at within the military institution.
The Buddhist hall within the Chapel has actually been in use for years (it was even renovated in 2007) so it is unclear why NPR is covering the story now. However, they do provide several quotes that indicate the religious climate at the Air Force Academy has “improved” from Read more
The Colorado Springs Gazette recently got taken by a USAFA euphemism. In an article about the new Air Force Academy program that helps cadets learn about UAVs, the paper said
The F-35 fighter now in production may be the last fighter the Air Force buys that carries a pilot. That doesn’t mean the remote planes are super stars at the Air Force Academy, where the cadet wing’s favorite acronym is IHTFP for “I’m here to fly planes.”
The cadet wing’s favorite acronym may be IHTFP (though it would be in close running with BOHICA), but that’s not what it stands for. Read more
A local paper announced the victory of the Demons over their adversaries during US Air Force Academy basic training, which ends soon as the new cadets will begin their academic year.
Much has been made of the apparently “supernatural” terminology sometimes invoked during Basic Cadet Training (BCT) at the US Air Force Academy. Read more