Nativity Scene @ Shaw Airforce Base

Dear Military Religious Freedom Foundation,

You all should be ashamed of yourselves. To take on the task of removing religion from our military is shameful. You think that this is to the betterment of our country…..I would ask how? By removing religion from our schools, look where our schools are now. By removing religion from our military? Look where our military will be. There is nothing harmful in displaying a nativity scene. If you haven’t forgotten; 80% of Americans still categorize themselves as Christians. You all are nothing but another organization giving in to the minority by discriminating against the majority and it is shameful.

(name withheld)

Hi (name withheld),

You’re mistaken. What we do is protect the religious rights of everyone be ensuring that the law is followed and the government does not endorse one religion over another. That’s all.

We’re not taking religion away from anyone in the military, we’re just preserving the right of the men and women in the military to have the freedom of choice about their beliefs.

Your point about the majority of Americans identifying as Christians is quite true. Actually the vast majority of the members/supporters of the MRFF are Christians, too. And as Christians they understand that it’s inappropriate for the government to show favoritism when it comes to religion.

Here’s what the Secretary of the Air Force said about it:


Air Force Instruction 1-1

7 August 2012

2.11. Government Neutrality Regarding Religion. Leaders at all levels must balance constitutional protections for an individual’s free exercise of religion or other personal beliefs and the constitutional prohibition against governmental establishment of religion. For example, they must 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. Commanders or supervisors who engage in such behavior may cause members to doubt their impartiality and objectivity. The potential result is a degradation of the unit’s morale, good order, and discipline. Airmen, especially commanders and supervisors, must ensure that in exercising their right of religious free expression, they do not degrade morale, good order, and discipline in the Air Force or degrade the trust and confidence that the public has in the United States Air Force.


Mike Farrell

It was my understanding that all groups were given the opportunity to place their own display, but the only group who actually did place their display was the group who placed the nativity scene. If this is the case, then it should not have been removed because all others had their opportunity.

My concern is that with the removal of God, our society is failing.

(name withheld)

Dear (name withheld),

You might want to check that. Even the base commander understood that what was done and the way in which it was done was inappropriate.

As to your concern, I’m unaware of a “removal of God” in our society except as it is continually trumpeted on Fox News. It seems to me God’s presence is in the heart, in one’s private thoughts and personal behavior, not in public displays, vengeful threats, finger-pointing, shaming and condemning.

I wish you well.

Mike Farrell

The below came from a report just released yesterday. It was also in the original report I read. ALL faith and secular groups had an opportunity to place displays, but only one group chose to. Where do you think you have the right to now push to have that group’s right taken away. You hide behind the curtain of “most of us here are Christians too.” This country was founded on Christian principles. Christmas is a Federal holiday and whether you want to admit it or not, 90% of those celebrating this time of year are not celebrating a Muslim holiday, nor are they celebrating Kwanza. They are celebrating, as Christians, CHRISTmas. Oh, and BTW, I did not hear about this story on Fox news, but am very thankful for the reporting at Fox News because all other media outlets are beholden to the left and have sold their souls to reporting only what the left wants them to report….which is a disgrace to this country and to the morals they should encompass as journalists.

In a statement released Thursday, Shaw officials explained that all faith and secular groups had an opportunity to place displays at Memorial Lake; only one group chose to do so. However, 20th Fighter Wing leaders determined that to celebrate the holiday consistently, the nativity should not be placed there. The base suggested that the display be moved to the chapel, where it’s been for years.

(name withheld)

Dear (name withheld),

You’re right. I only learned later that other groups had been offered the opportunity. However, that doesn’t make it right. The government, the military, the base, has no business involving itself with the establishment of a religious display. Period. And, according to the article you sent, the Fighter Wing leaders determined that the Nativity scene should not be placed there; it should be placed on the chapel grounds, where it has been for years. Those last six words say it all. Had it originally been put where it belonged, there would never have been any problem.

The fact that most of those involved with the MRFF isn’t a curtain, it’s a fact. And as good Christians, they understand that the government should not be involved in the promotion of any religion. I’m sorry you have a hard time with that.

As regards your assertion about our country’s “Christian principles,” the accepted understanding in the west is Judeo-Christian principles. May I assume you know what the Judeo part refers to?

Christmas is a federal holiday. So is Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

No one here is opposed to people celebrating Christmas, nor are any of us against having Christmas decorations around. Our point is only that they can’t be done the an arm of the government. Setting it up on the chapel grounds is perfect.

Mike Farrell

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