Stop hating christians

Please stop this sinful hateful language and behavior toward those who express their religious freedom in this country!
Though I am proud to be a veteran and Christian citizen of this country, I am sickened that you represent out country.  I am greatly disturbed at your recent hateful speech toward men and women in uniform who express their beliefs publicly….just as you have done in the media and on your website. Your actions are shameful and quite embarrassing!
By conscience I cannot support your organization.
(name withheld)

Hi (name withheld),

We don’t consider either our language or our behavior hateful. And we don’t have any problem with people expressing their religious convictions, as long as they do it appropriately. You see, in the military, because it is part of the government, there is a proper time, place and manner for such expressions. Officially, as part of a military unit, organization or body, one must keep her or his belief to oneself. In chapel, mosque, temple or other place of worship, one can express away.

There was nothing hateful about the expression of disgust with the ostentatious Christian promotion done by the USAFA team. As a matter of fact, the charge made against the Academy for this improper act was made on behalf of cadets and some members of the team who feel it is inappropriate but fear that openly opposing it will cause harm to their careers. This feared harm is a very real part of their presence at the Academy and on the team because of the zealotry of the promoters of a particular sect of Christianity in positions of authority there.

I don’t know if you, as a proud veteran and Christian, believe in condemning those, even other Christians, who do not share your particular belief. If you do, shame on you. If you do not, work up a bit of your Christian compassion for those who are discriminated against because they do not toe the denominational line at the Academy.

And ask your conscience what you might be inclined to do if presented with this:

<MRFF re USAFA prayer.png>

Best,
Mike Farrell
(MRFF Board of Advisors)

Thanks for your reply.  Perhaps I do not have the whole picture, but it was my understanding that these players did keep their “belief to oneself”.  I have not heard how these players “forced” their beliefs on others or “forced” others at the school to endorse their religious beliefs.  I am curious to hear how other cadets “feared harm” as a result of this. Is there any objective evidence of this?… because I certainly would be outraged if this were true.

 

As you have endorsed your graphic artist’s “what if” version of players bowing down on carpets to Allah as Muslims do, I am certain that Muslims would find it offensive if you endorsed a graphic art of them portrayed as praying to El Elyon (God Most High) rather than to Allah.  What I do find as a positive parallel is that the players in the graphic art (just as the actual players huddled on their knees) are not forcing others or striking fear into other cadets not taking part in their freedom of religious expression. I am not finding this true in your statements and articles; if Christ does not exist and is a false deity to you, where is this animosity coming from? You seem to only condemn one particular faith in your webpage and emails; this is not fair nor impartial.

As a “compassionate” person, I am concerned for you and want to leave you with these verses; please allow your conscience to weigh their content as you may:

(Psalm 78: 38-39) Yet he, being compassionate, atoned for their iniquity and did not destroy them; he restrained his anger often and did not stir up all his wrath. He remembered that they were but flesh, a wind that passes and comes not again.”

(Psalm 103:13) “As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.”

(name withheld)


 

Hi (name withheld),

Your use of quotation marks to point out words suggests to me that you find some of what I said hard to believe. That’s your privilege, of course, but let me just say that you clearly don’t, as you suggest is possible, have the whole picture.

Your understanding is not correct. What you have heard has not given you the whole picture. However, it is not my job to provide the “objective evidence” necessary to educate you to the reality of the situation. If you care enough to look into it with an open mind I’m sure you’ll learn some things that you may find to be rather disquieting.

The graphic artist’s rendering was provided only to make the point, as you may have missed, that had the demonstration of religious devotion by the team been to another faith the reaction would have been quite different. And the hope was that any discomfort felt by any member of the audience to that display might then be useful in sensitizing them to what someone of another belief may experience when the team kneels in Christian prayer.

I know of no one who has said or even implied that “Christ does not exist and is a false deity.” How have you come to raise such a question in communication with us?

The preponderance of references to the forced Christian proselytizing you noted is a result of the preponderance of complaints about forced Christian proselytizing. We occasionally have had to deal with over-zealous atheists and problems with assorted other issues, but the single biggest problem we are asked to help with is created by a sect of Christian believers who are so sure theirs is the one and only true faith that they condemn any and all who do not fall in line, including Catholics and main-line Protestants.

Thanks for your concern. As far as your references to compassion are concerned, I believe it was Jesus who reprimanded pious leaders of his day for being people who “preach, but do not practice.”

Worth thinking about.

Mike Farrell

(MRFF Board of Advisors)


 

Dear (name withheld),
I am writing in response to your December 8, 2015 email to the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (“MRFF”).  You plainly misunderstand our work and mission, so I hope I can clear up some things.

 

MRFF is not about hating Christians.  We fight to protect the religious freedom of all soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, cadets, and veterans.  In fact, over 96% of our clients are Christians who have suffered persecution or discrimination as a result of their particular faith.

 

However, public prayer results in an endorsement of one religion over others, which violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.  Moreover, it violates U.S. Air Force regulations.  USAF Instruction 1-1, Sec. 2.12 states: “Leaders at all levels…must ensure their words and actions cannot reasonably be construed to be officially endorsing or disapproving of, or extending preferential treatment for any faith, belief, or absence of belief.”  Protecting religious expression requires enforcing the limits on that expression as set forth by the Constitution and military regulations.

 

I suspect that your “shame” and “embarrassment” regarding MRFF’s recent actions is not about the freedom of religious expression, but rather the expression of Christian prayer – your description of our language as “sinful” says as much.  The two are different – I somehow doubt you would so vocally support religious expression if the USAFA football players knelt toward Mecca before each game.  We would fight against the wrongful endorsement of any religion – Christian or otherwise – equally.  Can you say the same about supporting it?

 

Blessed be,

 

Tobanna Barker
MRFF Legal Affairs Coordinator

 

 

 

 

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4 Comments

  1. Yeshua Warrior

    The Air Force Academy has just said that the players can pray in the end zone!

    http://christianfighterpilot.com/2015/12/09/update-usafa-responds-to-football-prayer-complaint/

  2. Connie

    YW – did you know the writer christianfigherpilot is just as factually challenged as yourself? Small wonder you use him as a source.

    Players, on their own time, can pray whenever they want. Players, when in uniform, represent the military and the government of the USA and may not endorse any religion. EVER.

    Even your saviour said it’s Government or State Law before God’s law because those doing the governing are chosen by God. So – you know better than God? Because I can already hear you replying that those doing the governing aren’t REALLY God’s choice because they don’t worship exactly as you do.

    Again – I ask – you know better than God? Really?

  3. Yeshua Warrior

    So those male Air Force academy swimmers in their little tight speedos with their bulging penis’s are in uniform?? or AFA gymnasts in their tight outfits are in uniform, really?

    Jesus would never say that man’s laws are higher than God’s laws? In fact, His disciples said that sometimes we must obey God rather than man! When man’s laws are against God’s laws, we must obey God first.

  4. Connie

    Love how you go to sex and body shaming.

    As for the uniforms of the gymnastic and swim teams, well yeah, I consider them to represent the USA. What do you want them to wear – fatigues? In a pool?

    As for what Jesus did or did not say I’m using your book. Do I need to spank you again with my “biblically illiterate” self?

    I’ll be clear – I view anyone who is on duty in the military or the government as a representative of the USA. That’s all of us not just some of us.

    I follow mans laws because their intent is to ease living when there are more than a few of us. Each of us would cause harm to those who would harm us and ours. Laws keep us from killing each other. Usually.

    You read my words (or not) and discount my point of view because… No worries. This was never about you.

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