Complaint

MRFF,
As an MRFF member, I’d like to report another instance of Air Force Security Forces using the greeting “Have a Blessed Day” at a base gate.  This happened tonite, May 13 at 6:20 pm at the Osan Air Base, Korea Main Gate as I was entering the base.  The 51 Security Forces Sq Airman First Class  said “Have a Blessed Day” after giving my ID card back.  At first I didn’t really hear him, as my car CD was playing fairly loudly and I didn’t really pay much attention, but as I drove into the base it hit me what he’d just said.  So, after parking my car in the lot adjacent to the gate, I walked back over to the A1C to make sure I didn’t make a mistake and asked him if he just said “Have a Blessed Day” to me.  He replied that he had, and I replied that it was inappropriate to do so, got his name, and then left.
I have worked on over 30 DoD installations over the last 47 years, I am a retired Air Force officer (24 years) and have worked for various DoD organizations as a civil servant for over 20 years.  I’ll be retiring in a few months.
Frankly, one of the main reasons I’m finally retiring is because I am totally fed up with the lack of respect and consideration the Air Force continues to exhibit in ways large and small regarding religious freedom and adherence to Air Force instructions and the Constitution itself.  I am very familiar with what the rules say about religious freedoms issues, and I’m required to take the exact same training that military  members do.  Therefore, I continue to be amazed the Air Force continues to allow such things as Chaplain’s invocations at even small events.  Additionally, a couple of years ago I was startled when our deputy commander here (a two star general) said at the very end of a commander’s call, after wishing people a safe weekend, etc, “Make peace with your maker.”  I almost stood up and called him out on it, but chose not to.  In short, from my perspective, Air Force leadership just doesn’t get it.
In closing, I ask that you report this gate guard’s action and urge that DoD (or at least the Air Force) issue a blanket policy memo to its security organizations specifically prohibiting religiously-tinged comments such as “Have a Blessed Day” by security guards.  Enough is enough.
Thanks for all you do in support of religious freedom and adherence to the Constitution.
Regards,
(name withheld)

 

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3 Comments

  1. watchtower

    I’m pretty sure the USAF recently said [ruled] it was ok from a “freedom of religion” perspective for our troops at the gate to wish you a blessed day. I’m not sure about the other services position on this matter, but really, why don’t you just say “No Thank You” and drive on? Just be careful, he/she is probably a 19-20 yo with a loaded gun and it may not be worth the risk. They might also tell patrols or broadcast your car make, model and license plate over the radio and you get tickets for driving 1 mph over the speed limit or banned from driving on base for 30 days for arguing with a cop who knows his authority out ranks everybody.

  2. Connie

    I believe the truth is there is nothing in the regulations prohibiting or approving what the guard at the gate can say.

    It is telling in the report that those who wear the uniform can not maintain a separation between church and state. Wearing a uniform means that person represents the state. It is hubris plain and simple. I hope it is rewarded appropriately.

  3. Wow. Where is the tolerance, here? You folks need to find something to do with your lives. Websites like this one is what’s wrong with America, land that I love. God bless America, once again, and forgive us for letting things get this far.

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