Since its inception in 2005, MRFF and its President and Founder, Michael L. “Mikey” Weinstein, have worked tirelessly to protect the rights of our clients by fostering a national discussion, influencing military policies, and pursuing legal remedies through our court system. Your support has made this vital work possible.
January 2016 – New Commander Quickly Reprimanded for Explicitly Sectarian Religious Speech at First Official Staff Meeting: MRFF President/Founder Mikey Weinstein was contacted on January 21, 2016 by a U.S. Air Force Officer on behalf of himself and 7 fellow USAF Officers (all practicing Christians) regarding a highly inappropriate speech delivered at the first staff meeting called by their newly installed commanding officer… [read more]
January 2016 – Air Force Recruiting Service Video Touting Religious Conversion Removed: The U.S. Air Force Recruiting Service put out a recruiting commercial in which an Air Force Chaplain touts how rewarding it is to minister to thousands and then goes on to tell a story about deploying to Iraq with an Airman and by the end of the deployment, the Airman “accepted Christ as personal Lord and Savior”… [read more]
December 2015 – MRFF Client Assistance Leads to Removal of Inappropriate Religious Displays at AFB Duty Stations: President/Founder Mikey Weinstein was contacted by an active duty service member at Buckley AFB located in Aurora, CO on December 19, 2015 regarding the rampant display of religious symbols… [read more]
December 2015 – USAFA Association of Graduates Immediately Agrees to Correct Retail Sales Circular: After receiving a retail sales circular via email on December 4, 2015 entitled ‘21 Days of Christmas Savings’, MRFF Founder/President (and U.S. Air Force Academy graduate) Mikey Weinstein contacted the U.S. Air Force Academy Association of Graduates to request a basic and obvious correction… [read more]
November 2015 – Threat of MRFF Involvement Immediately Changes Attendance Requirement at Religious Service: A MRFF active duty U.S. Army client had been informed that they were required to attend a religious memorial service at the post chapel… [read more]
November 2015 – MRFF Demand Forces Corps of Engineers Supervisor to ‘Cease and Desist’ Issuing Proselytizing Biblical Messages on Government Emails: MRFF President/Founder Mikey Weinstein was contacted on November 13, 2015 regarding the practice of a regional supervisor of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Directorate of Contracting continually including various biblical quotes within their government e-mail signatures… [read more]
November 2015 – MRFF Demand Forces Immediate Removal of Christian Crusader Warrior Image at U.S. Army Training Center: On Monday morning November 16, 2015, MRFF President/Founder Mikey Weinstein sent a demand letter to Major General Edward Dorman, Commander of the 8th Theater Sustainment Command (8 TSC)… [read more]
November 2015 – MRFF Assistance Sought to Develop Pluralistic Chaplaincy Program for Major Municipal Fire Department: Based upon experience and leadership regarding government/religion interaction, MRFF President/Founder Mikey Weinstein was contacted by the Crisis Intervention Officer of a large municipal fire/rescue department for assistance… [read more]
November 2015 – Ft. Carson Post Exchange (PX) Forced to Remove Anti-Islamic T-Shirts From Retail Shelves: On Monday, November 2, 2015, a MRFF client contacted the operators of the Ft. Carson PX located near Colorado Springs, CO regarding the highly objectionable sale of a T-Shirt in the PX mall… [read more]
November 2015 – MRFF Action Leads to Corrective Action Within 3hrs at Maxwell Air Force Base: On November 2, 2015, the Volunteer Resource Coordinator for the 42nd Force Support Squadron located at Maxwell AFB emailed a list of volunteer opportunities to be disseminated throughout… [read more]
October 2015 – Commander at Dover AFB Immediately Disavows Endorsement of Email Encouraging Participation in Annual Christian Proselytizing Event. MRFF client forwarded an email they received from the Dover AFB’s Command Secretary/Chief Administrative Assistant to the commanding officer of the 436th Force Support Squadron, Lt. Col. Don Tasker… [read more]
September 2015 – U.S. Air Force Academy Instructor Apologizes for Blatant Religious Proselytizing: A cadet at the U.S. Air Force Academy was proselytized heavily by one of his instructors. After being informed that his inappropriate religious proselytizing had been reported to MRFF, the USAFA instructor immediately apologized to the cadet for his behavior… [read more]
August 2015 – MRFF Intervention Leads to Immediate Disciplinary Action Against Commander Who Attempted To Force Subordinates To Attend His ‘Bible Study’: After being told by their unit commander they had to attend his ‘bible studies’ being held in their barracks, 6 Christian soldiers contacted MRFF for assistance… [read more]
August 2015 – U.S. Air Force Commander Rescinds Unit Commander’s Directive to Attend Sunday Chapel to Show “Spiritual Fitness”: MRFF was contacted by several airmen at a U.S. Air Force installation after they were informed by their unit commander that “spiritual fitness” was very important to him and his commander and that he “expected to see us at Sunday chapel as often as possible”…. [read more]
July 2015 – U.S. Air Force Base Leadership Takes Immediate Corrective Action Regarding Program Director’s Religious Proselytizing and Preferential Treatment of Male Airmen: Military and DoD civilian clients contacted Mikey Weinstein requesting that he intervene on their behalf with the program director’s leadership regarding what they felt was an obvious display of highly inappropriate federal government workplace “male, Evangelical, chauvinistic patriarchy”… [read more]
June 2015 – MRFF Intervention Leads To Immediate Corrective Action Regarding Anti-Semitic Remarks Aimed At MRFF Client: On June 17, 2015 MRFF President and Founder Mikey Weinstein was contacted by a family representative of a Jewish MRFF client who had received what was essentially an anti-Semitic death threat… [read more]
May 2015 – MRFF Cease & Desist Letter Leads to U.S. Navy Recruit Training Command (RTC) Restoring Religious Support Programs: On May 14, 2015 the Chicago Tribune, which had previously reported on the RTC commander’s decision to remove volunteer religious minority lay leaders from the RTC, reported… [read more]
April 2015 – MRFF Action Forces American Family Association (AFA) to Reveal Their Repugnant Theocratic Agenda for the United States: The American Family Association (AFA) is listed by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) as an extremist hate group. In early March 2015, the AFA extremist hate group created an ‘Anti-Christian Bigotry Map’ and included a reference to MRFF on this map… [read more]
March 2015 – MRFF Intervenes on Behalf of Clients’ Objections to Religious Based Greeting at Entrance to Military Installation: MRFF was contacted on March 9, 2015 regarding a religiously tinged greeting in use at the ‘Russell Gate’ at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia: “Have a blessed day.”… [read more]
March 2015 – MRFF Clients Expose Serious Constitutional Error on U.S. Air Force Total Force Awareness Training Test:On March 5, 2015 numerous clients notified MRFF that a test widely distributed to airmen mixed up the 1st and 5th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution with the apparent attempt to support the narrative of Christian Dominionists that religious freedom is a “commonly violated civil liberty”… [read more]
February 2015 – Fundamentalist Evangelical Pastor of Megachurch Banned from Participation in Future Ceremonial Events by State National Guard Adjutant General (TAG): One particular National Guard unit, which had a history of seeking religious accommodation advice from MRFF, invited a well-known fundamentalist Christian Evangelical pastor to deliver a benediction at a unit deployment ceremony… [read more]
January 2015 – Special Forces Recruiting Poster for ‘God’s Mission’ Removed Immediately After MRFF’s Intervention: A Phoenix recruiting station was displaying a recruitment poster which contained the image of a Special Forces patch under Special Forces, Ranger and Airborne tabs. This image was displayed underneath the slogan “On A Mission For Both God And Country.”… [read more]
December 2014 – MRFF Reaches Milestone of Serving Over 40,000 Clients: MRFF now represents well over 40,000 active duty Sailors, Soldiers, Marines, Airmen, Cadets, Midshipmen, National Guard and Reserve personnel, Coast Guard men and women and Veterans.
December 2014 – USAFA Changes Religious Accommodations Policy One Day After Being Contacted by MRFF: On December 1, 2014, the United States Air Force Academy (USAFA) published a document titled, “Religious Accommodations NOTAM” (NOTAM is a common military acronym that stands for Notice to Airmen) on their public website… [read more]
November 2014 – Revised Air Force Instruction (AFI) 1-1 Complies With MRFF Demand to Maintain Critical Religious Neutrality Section 2.11 of AFI 1-1 pertaining to ‘Government NeutralityRegarding Religion’ was originally adopted on August 7, 2012. Enforcement of this regulation sparked outrage from various individuals and entities intent on allowing religious proselytizing under cover of government authority… [read more]
November 2014 – Mikey’s Live Testimony Before Congress, House Armed Services Committee: Although MRFF has submitted written testimony before, this is the 1st ever face-to-face in the ‘lions den’.
October 2014 – MRFF Exposes Army ROTC Program’s Blatantly Unconstitutional Restrictions Against All Non-Christians: An active duty U.S. Army officer and MRFF client informed MRFF that a list of available assignments contained a listing for the position of Assistant Professor of Military Science for the ROTC program at Wheaton College requiring that applicants “Must Be Of Christian Faith”… [read more]
September 2014 – Under Pressure from MRFF and Allies, the U.S. Air Force Rescinds the Unlawful and Coercive Requirement That Enlistees State “So Help Me God” in Their Enlistment Oath: Around August 25, 2014 an airman at Creech AirForce Base seeking to reenlist was informed that he must swear to God in order to do so… [read more]
August 2014 – MRFF Involvement Instrumental in NEXCOM Decision to End Practice of Placing Religious Materials in Navy Lodge Guest Rooms: Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM) issued a directive that ended the practice of placing religious materials within guest rooms of the 40 Navy Lodge facilities operated by NEXCOM worldwide… [read more]
July 2014 – MRFF Presentation to NMANG Joint Forces Chaplain Training Event: Mikey Weinstein was invited to speak about issues of religious time, place, and purpose expectations and restrictions on July 28, 2014 at a New Mexico Army National Guard Joint Forces Chaplain Training event… [read more]
April 2014 – MRFF Intervenes on Clients’ Behalf to Make Attendance Non-Mandatory at Speaking Event by Religious Fundamentalist: MRFF was contacted by an active duty officer deployed overseas who expressed concern with mandatory attendance at a speaking event on “moral leadership and spiritual resiliency designed to reinforce the Army Values.” The keynote speaker was Southern Baptist Preacher Dr. Richard Blackaby… [read more]
March 2014 – U.S. Air Force Academy Cadet Leader Removes Proselytizing Bible Passage Outside His Room After MRFF Client Complaints: MRFF was contacted by 29 cadets and four faculty and staff members about the posting of a Christian Bible passage outside the private room of a cadet leader… [read more]
January 2014 – U.S. Air Force Base Drop Christian Marriage Video from Mandatory Event: MRFF was contacted regarding a mandatory-attendance “Wingman Day” that involved “Christian videos” with one of the modules labeled: “Love Happens: God’s Purpose and Plan.”… [read more]
January 2014 – Christian Messaging During Official Functions at Air Force Base Halted: 13 active duty Airmen stationed at a mainland U.S. Air Force base contacted MRFF regarding repeated dogmatic Christian messaging by a Commander within a short span of time… [read more]
December 2013 – Sectarian Religious Display at GTMO is Relocated to Base Chapel: The Military Religious Freedom Foundation received an email on Monday night December 16, 2013 signed by 18 active-duty service members protesting the Nativity scenes set up at the Guantanamo’s Gold Hill and Seaside galleys… [read more]
December 2013 – State National Guard Commanding Officer Swiftly and Effectively Disciplines Chain of Command Responsible for Religious Discrimination, Intimidation, and Retribution: Mikey Weinstein was contacted in late November/2013 by a Jewish member of a State Defense Force regarding specific actions taken against him… [read more]
December 2013 – U.S. Air Force Removes Unconstitutional Sectarian Religious Display: MRFF was alerted by clients of a sectarian nativity scene that had been placed at Shaw Air Force Base… [read more]
November 2013 – MRFF Demands USAFA Immediately Fire “ex-Gay” Fundamentalist Christian Who Claimed He Could “Cure” Gays: Upon learning that the U.S. Air Force Academy was employing this anti-gay bigot, MRFF immediately sent a letter on behalf of its 27 lesbian/gay/bisexual (LGB) clients at USAFA to Acting Secretary of the Air Force, Eric Fanning… [read more]
November 2013 – MRFF Continues Aggressive Campaign Against Ongoing Christian Fundamentalist Extremism at the U.S. Air Force Academy: In October/2013 MRFF posted a billboard along one of the busiest thoroughfares in Colorado Springs, CO…. [read more]
October 2013 – U.S. Air Force Academy Superintendent Removes ‘Prep-School’ Poster Containing Religious Oath After Being Contacted by MRFF: President and Founder Mikey Weinstein received a picture of a poster displayed at the USAFA Prep-School that contained the Academy’s honor code followed with an addendum stating “Furthermore, I resolve to do my duty and live honorably so help me God.”… [read more]
October 2013 – Department of Defense Officials Responsible for U.S. Army Comprehensive Soldier and Family Fitness Program Seek MRFF’s Direct Input: Lt. Colonel Chaplain Stephen W. Austin contacted MRFF President and Founder Mikey Weinstein on October 8, 2013 regarding initial development and implementation of a spirit(ual) dimension component to a U.S. Army soldier resilience platform… [read more]
October 2013 – MRFF Exposes Close Ties Between Dominionist Groups Meeting with DoD Officials and Fundamentalist Leader Calling for Military Takeover of U.S. Government: On October 3, 2013, MRFF Senior Research Director Chris Rodda reported in the Huffington Post on the extremely close ties between the Restore Military Religious Freedom (RMRF) coalition, RMRF coalition member the Family Research Council, and Rick Joyner, the head of MorningStar Ministries/Heritage International Ministries who proposed a “military takeover” of the U.S. Government… [read more]
September 2013 – MRFF Submits FOIA Request Demanding All Records Pertaining to Meeting Between Dept. of Defense Officials and Christian Dominionist Leaders: The Military Religious Freedom Foundation has long observed a continued cozy and incestuous relationship between an activist segment of the highest echelons of the Pentagon and noxious fundamentalist Christian organizations… [read more]
September 2013 – Obama Administration Responds to a ‘We The People’ White House Petition by Citing Changes in ‘Spiritual Fitness’ Test Language and Applicability Recommended by MRFF: On December 29, 2010, the international law firm Jones Day, on behalf of MRFF and its client Sgt. Justin Griffith, filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with the Department of Army regarding the development and implementation of the spiritual well-being component of the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program’s Soldier Fitness Tracker (SFT) and Global Assessment Tool (GAT)… [read more]
August 2013 – MRFF Meets with Superintendent/Commanding General of U.S. Military Academy (West Point) to Discuss Religious Respect Problems and Related Constitutional Issues: On Monday, August 26, 2013, MRFF Founder and President Mikey Weinstein and long time MRFF ally Lt. Gen. William T. Lord (USAF ret.) met with Lt. Gen. Robert L. Caslen, Jr., newly appointed Superintendent and Commanding General at West Point… [read more]
July 2013 – MRFF Action Forces Immediate Removal of Chaplain’s Statement Denigrating Military Service of Atheists: Lt. Col. Kenneth Reyes, installation Chaplain at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER) posted an article to the JBER official website entitled , Chaplain’s Corner: ‘No atheists in foxholes': Chaplains gave all in World War II… [read more]
July 2013 – MRFF’s Action on Behalf of Clients Quickly Produces Corrective Action Regarding Sectarian Prayer During Official Ceremony at U.S. Military Research Facility: A spokesperson for a group of 40 service members and military contractors (32 being either Protestant or Catholic) at a U.S. Military research facility contacted MRFF… [read more]
June 2013 – MRFF Successes in Challenging Unconstitutional Religious Activity in the Military Brings Attempt at Congressional Retaliation: On June 13, 2013 Congressman Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) introduced an amendment to the FY2014 National Defense Authorization Act. Huelskamp’s amendment, with the heading “Meetings with Respect to Religious Liberty,” was passed by a voice vote in the House… [read more]
June 2013 – MRFF Receives Assurance from U.S. Air Force Academy to Improve Briefing & Preparation of Commissioning Ceremony Speakers: During an official USAFA 50-year commissioning ceremony for USAFA Cadet Squadron 13 on Tuesday, May 28, 2013, Lt. Gen. James A. Fain (USAF-Ret.), Class of 1963, implored the graduates to “help return this country to the Christian values it was founded on.”… [read more]
May 2013 – MRFF Forces Removal of Overtly Religious Artwork from Dining Hall at Mountain Home A.F.B.: MRFF was contacted by a non-commissioned officer (NCO) from Mountain Home Air Force Base, acting as the spokesperson for a group of twenty-two airmen (17 of the 22 are Christians, both Catholic and Protestant) who wanted this repugnant piece of artwork removed… [read more]
May 2013 – MRFF Receives 1st Ever Approval to Participate in the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC): MRFF received approval from the CFC Director of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management on May 10, 2013 to participate in the 2013 CFC fall campaign… [read more]
May 2013 – National Civil Rights and Interfaith/Faith-Based Organizations Step Up to Defend Foundation From Heinously Distorted Allegations – Following MRFF’s meeting at the Pentagon a major media maelstrom enveloped the foundation, with misinformation disseminated by BREITBART.comleading to an avalanche of negative press from Fox News (including an interview on the O’Reilly Report) and other pro-Dominionist media outlets. This culminated in the denunciation of Mikey Weinstein as an “anti-Christian extremist” by Rep. John Fleming (R-LA) on the floor of the House of Representatives.
April 2013 – MRFF Meets with Pentagon Officials Regarding Implementation of Religious Neutrality Standards: MRFF President/Founder Mikey Weinstein, MRFF Board Member Ambassador Joseph Wilson, and MRFF Advisory Board Member Colonel (ret.) Lawrence Wilkerson met with a Pentagon group that included several generals and a military chaplain to discuss religious neutrality issues within the U.S. Military.
February 2013 – MRFF Demands Corrective & Punitive Action When U.S. Air Force Academy Promotes Reprehensible Homophobic Website as Source for Jewish Holiday Information. MRFF submitted a letter to General Mark A. Welsh III, Chief of Staff, United States Air Force, demanding that links to the website (www.jewfaq.org) no longer be used as educational reference points for matters of the Jewish faith and that those parties responsible face swift and decisive corrective measures. MRFF followed this with erecting a billboard on 3/5/2013 in Colorado Springs, CO (home of USAFA) and a protest rally on 3/8/2013 attended by approximately 65 people. Both events received significant coverage which finally led USAFA to ‘de-link’ this offensive website.
January 2013– MRFF Announces Recipients of the Courageous Sacrifice Scholarship for Constitutional Defense and the Freedom’s Promise Research Grant for the Advancement of Religious Liberty on 1/15/2013: The Courageous Sacrifice Scholarship for Constitutional Defense is meant to honor those service members who have displayed academic excellence and bravery in fighting to safeguard the foundational American values… [read more]
January 2013– U.S. military commanders in Afghanistan on Thursday ordered the removal of a steeple and crucifix erected over a remote American base in the Muslim country after a soldier deployed there noted that the symbols violated Army regulations, and could reinforce suspicions that the United States is fighting a holy war. “It is the sort of thing that provides a boundless bonanza of terrorist propaganda for the mujahideen, the insurrectionists, the Taliban and al-Qaida that we are supposedly fighting to protect our national security,” said Mikey Weinstein, founder and president of the non-profit Military Religious Freedom Foundation. “The message of the cross on the chapel is basically putting out the message in Pashto, Dari and Arabic to please blow me up because I’m a latter day Christian crusader.”
January 2013– U.S. Naval Academy Officer’s Christian Fellowship Removes Slogan from Webpage After MRFF FOIA Request: For many years, the “purpose” statement of the Officers’ Christian Fellowship (OCF), an organization of over 15,000 fundamentalist Christian officers operating throughout the military, was: “A spiritually transformed military, with ambassadors for Christ in uniform, empowered by the Holy Spirit.” … [read more]
December 2012 – Mikey Weinstein Named to List of 100 Most Influential People in U.S. Defense: MRFF President and Founder, Mikey Weinstein is named to the inaugural 100 Most Influential People in U.S. Defense on December 17, 2012… [read more]
November 2012 – Cancellation of fundamentalist fraudster and phony “Doctor” Ray Giunta as Guest Speaker of Pentagon Prayer Breakfast: MRFF, based on the complaints of 211 armed forces clients (189 of whom are practicing Protestants or Roman Catholics) at the Pentagon, demanded on November 26, 2012 that Senior Department of Defense (DoD) leadership immediately and officially revoke the invitation to Mr. Ray Giunta… [read more]
MRFF is nominated for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize for the fifth time, marking the fourth consecutive year that MRFF has received a nomination. MRFF was nominated by one of the founding members of a Nobel Peace Prize-winning humanitarian organization.
August 2012 – New Air Force Instruction AFI 1-1 Issued, Further Strengthening Religious Neutrality in U.S. Air Force: MRFF pressure directly culminated in the issuance of Air Force Instruction 1-1 Standards of Conduct. This document requires total mandatory compliance on penalty of potential adverse criminal action, including courts martial, under the Uniform Code of Military Justice – the first time religious neutrality regulations have had such enforceability. AFI 1-1 requires non-chaplain officers and supervisors to “avoid the actual or apparent use of their position to promote their personal religious beliefs to their subordinates or to extend preferential treatment for any religion.”
June 2012 – U.S. Military Emblems No Longer Allowed on Holman Military Bibles: Over the past few years, MRFF has received nearly 2,000 complaints about these Bibles which are displayed and sold in base exchanges and other stores on military bases… [read more]
June 2012 – Space and Missile Systems Center ‘Industry Days’ Rescheduled After MRFF Intervenes on Behalf of Clients: The 2012 Event was scheduled for Sept. 25 through Sept. 27 at exactly the same time that Jewish people observe what is considered the holiest day of their calendar, Yom Kippur… [read more]
May 2012 – MRFF Action Leads to Renaming of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 122 (VMFA-122): On April 17, 2012 MRFF initially challenged a Marine fighter squadron decision on renaming from the “Werewolves” to the “Crusaders”… [read more]
March 2012 – U.S. Air Force Removes Squadron Officer School Mandatory Chapel Attendance Policy: An active duty CGO (Company Grade Officer- 2ndLt., 1stLt., Captain) of the U.S. Air Force contacted MRFF seeking assistance when he found the curriculum of the Squadron Officer School (SOS) contained a chapel attendance mandate… [read more]
January 2012 – Rabid Islamophobic retired Lt. Gen. William Boykin Withdraws from West Point Speech: MRFF sent a demand letter to Secretary of the Army John McHugh on January 27, 2012 condemning the outrageous and scandalous decision to invite the rabidly Islamophobic retired Lieutenant General William Boykin… [read more]
January 2012 – No Snowflake in an Avalanche (Vireo, 2012) is released in January/2012 and details MRFF’s prominent case studies and struggles, as well as the violent impediments that continue to be imposed against MRFF by those in opposition. Mikey supports book lease with nationwide speaking and book signing tour which includes one book store in Albuquerque, NM being forced by public pressure to reverse its decision to deny an in-store appearance due to “controversy” surrounding Mikey/MRFF/Book.
December 2011 – MRFF provided written testimony on December 7, 2011 to a Joint Hearing on “Homegrown Terrorism: The Threat to Military Communities Inside the United States” held by the House Committee on Homeland Security and the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, detailing the plight of service member-clients and victims of Islamophobia within the armed forces.
November 2011 – Americans United for Separation of Church and State awarded Mikey Weinstein its inaugural Person of the Year award in Washington, DC on November 7, 2011. MRFF also received a nomination for the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize, making this the third consecutive year and fourth occasion where MRFF has been honored with such recognition.
November 2011 – MRFF’s demands for compliance with General Schwartz’s edict of September 1, 2011 led to the U.S. Air Force Academy’s command quickly moving sponsorship and oversight of Franklin Graham’s Operation Christmas Child program at the Academy under the guidance of the Chaplain Corps, where all religious programs belong.
September 2011 – MRFF again compels concrete corrective action by the U.S. Department of Defense and by the U.S. Air Force Academy: On September 1, 2011, General Norton Schwartz, United States Air Force Chief of Staff issued a memorandum on ‘Maintaining Government Neutrality Regarding Religion.’ Distribution of this edict by Academy leadership to faculty, staff, and cadets occurred only after MRFF’s placement of a billboard containing the full text of the memorandum at a busy intersection in Colorado Springs, the home of the U.S. Air Force Academy.
August 2011 – MRFF investigates Department of Defense contracts regarding religious promotions to military members and their families: In 2010, MRFF began an investigation into just how much money the DoD spends promoting religion to military personnel and their families. The initial report by Chris Rodda, MRFF Senior Research Director, was released on August 19, 2011, and was prominently featured on the front page of The Huffington Post.
August 2011 – Fort Bragg Limits then Restores Promised Support for “Rock Beyond Belief ” Concert/Festival: Due in part to continued pressure by MRFF, a spokesman for Fort Bragg announced in early August 2011 that, “Our logistical support will be the same as what we did for Rock the Fort,” meaning Bragg will provide the venue, security, and basic utilities. The event is presently scheduled to take place on March 31, 2012, on the main parade field at Fort Bragg (also the venue for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s fundamentalist Christian “Rock the Fort” concert, which was officially endorsed and promoted by Fort Bragg).
July 2011 – Based on the fallout from a MRFF client’s FOIA request exposing the use of Christian ‘Just War’ theology, the Nuclear Ethics and Nuclear Warfare training program “has been taken out of the curriculum and is being reviewed,” according to David Smith, chief of public affairs of Air Education and Training Command at Randolph Air Force Base in Texas. Subsequent to this action, on August 14, 2011, the Air Force Times reported that the Air Force was reviewing all training materials related to ethics, core values and character development after more Christian-themed course work surfaced.
June 2011 – MRFF’s vigorous efforts result in two immigrant MRFF clients of the Muslim faith, eager to serve their adopted homeland as translators abroad, being featured in a heart-rending, emotional story featured by both the New York Times and ABC News Nightline. The exposé detailed the hideous, ongoing ordeal which they have undergone since being subject to the unfounded accusations of conspiracy to poison their fellow soldiers.
May 2011 – ABC News Reports on MRFF’s Muslim Clients Persecuted for Religious Beliefs: “[The United States is] at war with Islam and you are a Muslim.” These shocking and inflammatory words were not uttered by a radical Al Qaeda ideologue such as Ayman al-Zawahiri but by an officer of the US Army Criminal Investigation Division, addressing honorable men eager to serve their adopted homeland… [read more]
April 2011 – Representing MRFF in a panel debate alongside military chaplains, Mikey Weinstein spoke to the US Army War College Strategy Conference on faith in the US military and in American civilian life, stressing the need to steadfastly protect soldiers’ legal rights to freedom from proselytizing harassment and to safeguard the military’s national security mission from those seeking to divert it towards theocratic, crusader ends.
March 2011 – MRFF Invited to Provide Testimony to the U.S. Senate: On March 29, 2011, MRFF provided extensive written testimony to a U.S. Senate hearing on “Protecting the Civil Rights of American Muslims.” The hearing was held before the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, and was the first-ever Congressional hearing on the civil rights of American Muslims.
March 2011 – MRFF opposes superiors demanding participation in religious events: U.S. Army releases investigation on March 8, 2011 pursuant to MRFF demands after soldiers disciplined for choosing not to attend an evangelical Christian Commanding Generals’ Spiritual Fitness Concert at Ft. Eustis. MRFF continues to disagree with the investigation’s attempt to place the blame on a lower-ranking soldier.
January 2011 – MRFF demanded that the US Army cease and desist their blatantly unconstitutional policy of administering a “spiritual fitness” component to the mandatory “Soldier Fitness Tracker”, whereby soldiers’ combat-readiness and ability are judged on the basis of their religiosity.
November 2010 – After MRFF’s relentless pressure on the US Air Force Academy, Superintendent Lt. Gen. Gould released the data behind the bi-annual Academy Climate Survey. The survey revealed that 41% of non-Christian cadets and 19% of all cadets were subjected to unwanted proselytizing. Additionally, religious liberty watchdog Americans United for Separation of Church and State announced that Mikey Weinstein will be named “Person of the Year” at a November 2011 ceremony in Washington, D.C. “We’ve never named a ‘Person of the Year’ before, but I can’t think of anyone more deserving than Mikey Weinstein,” stated Americans United executive director Rev. Barry W. Lynn.
Throughout 2010, Mikey Weinstein spoke to students at a number of the U.S. military’s educational institutions: the U.S. Air Force Academy’s National Character and Leadership Symposium, the Air Force JAG School, and the Air Command and Staff College. This direct contact with the future leaders of America’s military has been vitally important to MRFF’s continuing mission of fostering a climate of absolute religious freedom and acceptance throughout our armed forces.
October 2010 – MRFF was officially nominated for the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize, making this the second consecutive year MRFF has been honored with such recognition. Mikey Weinstein received the 2010 Anne Froehlich Political Courage Award from the Pacific Palisades Democratic Club for his work with the foundation.
September 2010 – MRFF and Mikey were included as major subjects in New York Times bestselling author Jeff Sharlet’s newest groundbreaking book, C Street: The Fundamentalist Threat to American Democracy (published by Little, Brown and Company), in which they are referred to as the “constitutional conscience of the military.”
August 2010 – MRFF broke the story of soldiers punished for refusing to attend a Christian concert at Ft. Eustis. MRFF’s spotlight on the issue of military-endorsed Christian concerts led to significant criticism of the Billy Graham Association’s “Rock the Fort” Christian concert at Ft. Bragg the following month.
April 2010 – MRFF’s successful demand led to the cancellation of Islamophobic Evangelical Preacher Franklin Graham’s scheduled participation in the Pentagon’s National Day of Prayer event, thereby severing the affiliation between the Pentagon event and Shirley Dobson(wife of Focus on the Family founder James Dobson)’s exclusively Christian National Day of Prayer Task Force and making this event inclusive of all religions. Also in April, the book Attitudes Aren’t Free: Thinking Deeply about Diversity in the US Armed Forces, published by Air University at Maxwell Air Force Base, was widely distributed throughout the command structure of the United States military. The book includes a chapter written by MRFF Senior Research Director Chris Rodda, which provides a comprehensive overview and numerous specific examples of the various issues that MRFF is currently dealing with and has dealt with in the past.
January 2010 – After MRFF and Mikey Weinstein exposed the biblical references engraved on Trijicon brand rifle scopes used by the United States military in Iraq and Afghanistan on ABC’s flagship news program Nightline, the story exploded across international news outlets. Shortly after the “Jesus Rifles” story broke, the manufacturer gave in to media pressure and ceased using the inscriptions, subsequently distributing kits throughout the military for the purpose of removing these biblical references from weaponry currently deployed worldwide.
October 2009 – The Military Religious Freedom Foundation was officially nominated for the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize: The nominator, who wishes to remain anonymous, happens to be the only Christian in the upper chamber of his country’s national parliament; the country is an ally of the United States. Shortly thereafter, another anonymous Qualified Nominator submitted a second official nomination for MRFF for the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize.
October 2008 – The California Council of Churches IMPACT (CCCI), one of the country’s largest Christian organizations, representing 21 mainstream and progressive Protestant denominations, 5,500 congregations, and millions of congregants formally announced its endorsement of MRFF.
August 2007 – MRFF first to uncover evangelical extremist group’s unconstitutional distribution of sectarian and bigoted “Left Behind” videogame to active-duty troops serving in Iraq: The game featured a post-apocalyptic storyline where “Soldiers for Christ” must convert “Secularists”, Jews, Muslims, and others. The group, Operation Straight Up, openly advocated the United States military unleashing “multiple crusades” to “sweep through” the Arab and Muslim world.
December 2006 – MRFF exposes misconduct by uniformed Pentagon Generals participating in “Christian Embassy” promo video filmed inside the Pentagon, directly resulting in disciplinary action for those who “improperly endorsed and participated with a non-Federal entity while in uniform”.
October 2005 – MRFF Founder and President Mikey Weinstein files lawsuit and blows the lid off of unconstitutional regime at the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO., where his son was subjected to horrific anti-Semitic abuse.