I just saw on TV that MRFF removed the bible from POW/MIA from VA display. Minneapolis City Council had a burqa day where all the women council members wore a burqa celebrating Islamic religious display on taxpayer dime. Did MRFF send a letter of complaint with its letterhead to Minneapolis City Council?
Do you guys just attack Christianity or you attack Islamic intrusion in everyday life with the same vigor? If you do please let me know where I can go look up your attack on Islam as I could see with Christianity today?
Dear (name withheld) –
I am writing in response to your March 1, 2016 email to the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (“MRFF”).
In response to your first question, the mission of MRFF is to protect the religious freedom of all soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, cadets, and veterans. Accordingly, our work is focused on the mandates of the Constitution within the context of the military. The “Burqa Day” you reference is not within the scope of our mission – not because it purportedly celebrated Islam, but because it has nothing to do with the military.
Regarding your second question, the mission of MRFF is not focused on Christianity. Instead, our focus is on whether actions endorse one religion over others, or religion over non-religion, in violation of the Establishment Clause. It is true that the vast majority of our work involves challenging the actions of fundamentalist Christians, but that it not because we desire to attack Christianity. We act on behalf of our clients and we receive an overwhelming number of complaints by service members concerning the endorsement of Christianity (such as including a Bible in a POW/MIA display), unwanted proselytizing by fundamentalist Christian superiors, and retaliation as a result of not being a Christian.
We simply do not receive similar complaints involving any religion other than Christianity. I am unaware of any complaint reported to MRFF that a superior required those under his/her command to pray toward Mecca, to celebrate the Pagan Sabbats, or to deny any religious deity whatsoever. I assure you that if we ever receive such complaints, we will fight just as vigorously to protect service members from the wrongful endorsement of a non-Christian religion as we do to protect service members from the wrongful endorsement of Christianity that is so rampant.
That said, the fact remains that the complaints we receive exclusively involve the unlawful actions of fundamentalist Christians and/or the wrongful endorsement of Christianity over other religions, or no religion. Consequently, it seems clear that the issue is not that MRFF has any problem with Christianity, but that Christian military superiors apparently have a problem with obeying the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. Although Christianity commands that people “preach the Gospel to every living creature,” (Mark 16:15) such expressions of religious beliefs must be shared within the proper time, place, and manner requirements of the Establishment Clause.
MRFF Legal Affairs Coordinator