Nightline logo

February 5, 2010

Subject: Cross Placed at Air Force Pagan Circle Prompts Probe

Actually - if that's the hill overlooking everything - that would be the best place to put a Cross - if the air force academy really wants God's blessings, they need to get on His plan - the Cross and the Resurrection

P.S. - ...the Lord allowed me to go over to Israel in May a year and 1/2 ago - celebrated Israel's 60th anniversary as a nation with a Christian ministry out of England - the Gospel of Jesus Christ is going out of Jerusalam all over the world

(name withheld)

February 4, 2010

Subject: Idiot Organization

Your very existance smacks of religious INTOLERANCE!. A "hate crime" at the USAFA because a cross was placed at a group of pagan ROCKS?? You people are idiots! You might want to examine your lives and try to figure out how you reached such a high level of human development that ROCKS are an important religious symbol....Just what, exactly, do you have against the Cross?
I guess if you saw someone pick up a rock and throw it or chop down a tree, you would feel pain and emotional distress??? Somewhere along the line, each of you in your organization had parents and other family who failed you.
Remember, when the bullets fly and the shells burst, there are no atheists and pagans in foxholes.

(name withheld)

February 4, 2010

Subject: Dueling religious symbols

I am sorry to disappoint you but as a retired Navy chief I must voice my opinion of your opinion that a crucifix is a symbol of a hate crime. Okay, maybe the Jews 2,000 years ago hated Jesus, but since then the crucifix has been the symbol of what one man did for mankind. I truly believe your nerve endings are way too close to the surface. Accept you are different, just as I accept I am different. Also, you have to realize this country was founded by a bunch of Christians.

Before you cry "wolf" I would recommend you look at all the real hate early Christians went through.

(name withheld)



Mikey is up to his navel answering communications from all over the place concerning the cross episode so I'm trying top help out. Mikey and I are pretty much on the same page about issues of this nature so I hope you don't mind me pinch hitting for him.

I'm Rick Baker, a regional coordinator for MRFF and I am up to date on this cross episode so I hope to to give you some satisfactory responses to your concerns.

First of all, may I say thank you for your service to America. As a former Air Force Officer, rescue pilot and Vietnam Vet, I am always happy to get to know other vets. As a matter of fact, I wish we were having a beer and exchanging war stories right now.

You don't have to be sorry to voice your opinion to us. That's what MRFF is all about. We listen to everybody and have learned a thing or two along the way.

You are correct that the cross has long been a symbol of what Jesus did for mankind. A symbol of love and sacrifice. Sadly, the cross has also been used as a symbol of hate. You remember how the KKK used Jesus' cross in the persecution of Blacks, Jews and Catholics? And in this case the cross was used to desecrate the private worship area of Wiccans, Druids and other Earth-Based Religions. It was used as a symbol of power and supremacy by Dominion Christian elements who believe that all other religions must be wiped from the Earth. This is really surprising to me considering the terrible persecution Christians suffered under Roman Emperors.

AT MRFF we accept our differences and those of other people. But we also know that differences, under our constitution, do not give special rights or powers to any particular religion.

Look, we all know that Christianity is the majority religion, although, frankly, America was not founded by a "bunch of Christians" but a rather diverse group of Deists, Christians and non-believers who foresaw issues of religious majority cropping up from time to time and planned ahead to accommodate such issues. But the majority religion, like a big brother, has a much bigger responsibility to honor and uphold our great constitution.

Remember how we always stood up for the little guy in our outfit and wouldn't let him fall victim to the bullies? That's what MRFF is doing now. We've got the backs of the little guy against some bullies who would deny them the right to practice their minority religion.

I suspect, that given the truth of this matter, you, too, would be pulling for the little guy, knowing this was not a matter of desecrating Jesus' cross but preserving its integrity against those who would use it as a tool to advance their agenda.

We will see how this plays out but I can assure you it is not the cross we have a problem with but rather those who would use it in the mistaken belief that Jesus was a tyrant and not a Savior.

My hat's off to the Navy carrier guys who helped me and my crew out more than once on over water rescues in the Gulf of Tonkin and never laughed even once.

Rick Baker
Regional Coordinator

February 3, 2010

Subject: Desecration of the Pagan Circle at the USAF Academy

As an ex Air Force man, myself (photographer, 1965), I'm outraged at the desecration of the Pagan Circle at the Academy. As others have noted, placing the logo of another religion, in this case, a cross made of railroad ties in another religion's sacred site is tantamount to, say, spray-painting swastikas on a synagogue.

Since the whole rail-road tie (not a particularly subtle construction medium!) cross affair must have taken quite a bit of both energy, to say nothing of man-power, it seems that simply burning the railroad ties would suffice. I am also suggesting the emplacement of
several motion-detector-controlled cameras of the kind used by deer hunters, so as to detect any other attempts of this sort.

There are no second-class citizens in this country.

And no second-class religions, either!

I remain,
Very Truly Yours,

(name withheld)

February 3, 2010

Subject: Colonel tells cadets 'lack of respect' for pagan site will not be tolerated


My name is (name withheld), they call me “Doc”, I served two tours plus in Vietnam as a combat medic. I live in Pueblo, Colorado. I am a 100% Disabled Veteran.

My outrage and grief over the last few years at the USAF Academy is great, this” Cross” incident has taken me to a new awareness.

I will not tolerate such.

My experiences with the USAF Academy are and have been great likely not about me but my friends, combat comrades who invited me to such as "The Week Of Eagles" and many football games in the VIP seats. My friends held the Medal of Honor.

I was the Army historian for Aero-Medical evacuation: what was called DUSTOFF in Vietnam and since but I go back to WWII and Korea in my research.

The issues and trends over the decades have been alarming. I am likely one of the leading sources on "Conscientious Objectors" in the military that have served say since WWI to today. That includes many faiths, beliefs, religions and individuals.

Few Americans know how many "CO" medics were killed since WWII. Realize these men of varied religious paths; mostly all medics who died saving fellow soldiers without every touching a rifle.

So I have been there and done such: saved lives, been harassed, threatened, called a coward: after two tours in Vietnam I leave that to just insanity of bigots.

Another group ill represented is Native Americans: they are allied to the Earth-centered faiths. I am also tied to this group of veterans, see you are in Albuquerque; I ran a Northern Pueblo rehabilitation program for New Mexico with the emphasis on Veterans.

The important issue here is the contribution of religious minorities: since the Civil War that were not of the majority Christian faiths.

So many men that I served with and commanded died, they represented a broad spectrum of American religious values: Seven Day Adventist, Pentecostal, Brethren, Mennonite, and yes some Jews and Catholics. But some of the honored dead include Medal of Honor recipients. Several still close to me as I know the families, their children and widows. But the issue is that the “CO’s” killed numbered in the many hundreds and the people that are the current problem have not a clue about what America means or stands for.

(name withheld)

February 3, 2010

Subject: Cross found at Air Force Academy's Wicca center | Plus Daily Kos and CS Indy

Mike, My friend,
When "progress" is allowing something as soul-eating as a Wiccan worship center on the grounds of a training ground for those who will defend our country, it is time for me to ask you not to send me your newsletters. It is more than my breaking heart can take.

(name withheld)

February 3, 2010

Subject: Intolerance and Hate Comments About USAFA Earth-Centered Worship Circle

Mikey Weinstein and MRFF,

I just received word from some Cadets that there's a lot of talk about the "Earth-Centered Circle" going around the Cadet Wing. Unfortunately, the talk has already crossed a very serious line. I’m not surprised at this terrible turn of events since nobody....and I mean NOBODY has stepped in to brief the Cadets about the HATE CRIME / DESECRATION that was committed against our sacred place of worship.

The circle isn't even ready yet and I’m getting frightful reports of future plans of vandalism. I was informed that when this desecration first happened that the Office of Special Investigations (OSI) was involved, but, unbelievably, I STILL haven’t been contacted by anyone AT ALL and I’m the one who found the cross and took the picture. This abandonement is how the U.S. Air Force takes care of its own when a hate crime has occurred? I know for an absolute fact that the picture of the large wooden cross propped up against our Circle was immediately sent up the Chain by the Chaplain's Ofice, but absolutely nothing has been done since, that I'm aware of. In stark contrast, we get three emails per day talking about restriced massage parlors, but SOMEHOW we can't get the message out about a clear hate crime of this horrible nature? I bet if the Cadet Chapel had a huge Pentacle at the front door tomorrow morning that someone would wake up then! It should be noted that the Dean of the Faculty (BG Dana Born) did mention the incident at “Dean’s Call”, but was comparatively weak, given the scope of this hate crime, and was only heard by USAF Academy Faculty and Staff....not the USAF Academy Cadets. I also know for a fact that the Cadets, amazingly, STILL haven’t been briefed about this situation and they’re the ones we have to worry about. Many of them are so brainwashed by the fundamentalist Christians that it seems like they’ll do anything to keep the rest of us down. Nothing within the Academy "system" is being done. We gave it a chance and it has failed us all and only made things that much worse. Just like in the past years. I’m now left with no other option than to immediately call upon you, Mikey Weinstein and MRFF, for official intervention and assistance in this matter. We have nowhere else to turn. We're now in the third week since this hate crime was perpetrated and noone is reaching out to or for us. It’s either that or I start educating the Cadet Wing myself by sending out mass emails of my own!!! My cadets are scared and I'm scared for them. We have been thrown under the bus by the system we trusted and the hate crime against us has been ignored. Now there are rumors of more hate crimes to come. We do not feel safe.

I will not standby and watch my cherished freedoms and my Constitutional religious rights and those same freedoms and rights of my USAF Academy Cadets be ripped apart. We, too, are members of the United States Air Force. But the Air Force ignores us, Mr. Weinstein. We need you and MRFF! PLEASE HELP NOW!

(name withheld)

February 3, 2010

Subject: Cross found at Air Force Academy's Wicca center | Plus Daily Kos and CS Indy

This entire episode is unthinkable. Can we please get out of the religious business in our military??

(name withheld)

February 2, 2010

Subject: Cross found at Air Force Academy's Wicca Center

You're so "progressive". The world is lucky to have you, right? So lucky. The Lord who made us all, made you free to choose evil and call it good. Thanks to you and your noxious ilk, the AFA is a worse place. All in a days work for the children of Satan...

(name withheld)