Missing Man Table

You have successfully removed the Bible from the Missing Man Display in the Ohio VA hospital and that has made one person gratified, (you), while angering, disappointing, and outraging hundreds if not thousands of Ohio veterans, and thousands more around the country. Why? Because you deny God? And this is what you live for? To deny veterans who have served their country one simple ceremony. Please do not try to sell me you baloney that you represent the non believers, or alternative to Christians. That sir is a load of crap. The MIA POW ceremony was written for the specific purpose of honoring all service members, Christian, Jew, Muslim, and yes, non believers. The reason that the Bible is part of that display is that the Bible is part of Americas founding, part of our Constitution, our Bill of Rights, our Currency, and our very fabric of life as Americans. If you do not like that, get the hell out and move to Russia where you can’t worship. That is where people like .you belong if you insist on taking my rights away.

(name withheld)


 

Hi (name withheld),

Watching Fox News can bend your brain.

We asked those in charge to remove the Bible because veterans felt it inappropriate. You see, it violates both the law and military regulations to include a religious symbol in an official poster because it implies government promotion of one religion over other beliefs or non-beliefs.

Your suppositions are wrong. This is not about denying God. The 95% of our members and supporters who are Christians would find such a thought laughable. Nor is removing the Bible “what we live for,” as you suggest. If it were the Koran or any other religious scripture, or if it had been an atheist tract, we would have done the same.

No, we don’t “represent the non-believers, or alternative to Christians” whatever that means. We represent the commitment to upholding the Constitution of the United States. And were you to do a bit of studying instead of blurting out falsehoods about the Bible’s place in the founding of our country, you might find out both how wrong you are and how wrong it was for the Bible to be part of that poster.

Mike Farrell

(MRFF Board of Advisors)


 

Dear (name withheld),

I am writing in response to your February 29, 2016 email to the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (“MRFF”).  You are clearly misinformed regarding the mission of MRFF, as well as the role of religion – and specifically the Bible – in the founding of this country.

 

The mission of MRFF is to protect the religious freedom of all soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, cadets, and veterans.  We do this by ensuring that the mandates of the Establishment Clause are obeyed by military superiors.  It may surprise you to learn that over 96% of our 45,036 (and counting) clients are actually Christians who have suffered religious discrimination or persecution while serving in the military.

 

First, you claim that we have only satisfied ourselves, while angering thousands, as a result of our action to remove the Bible from the POW/MIA Missing Man Table displayed at the Ohio VA clinic.  This claim is simply false.  First, we took action because we received multiple complaints about the Bible being included in the display from veterans who receive care at that clinic – the majority of whom identify as Christian.  Accordingly, our action not only satisfied people other than ourselves, we took the action on behalf of veterans requesting our assistance.

 

Second, removing the Bible from the display did not deny veterans any ceremony.  To the contrary, our action ensured that such ceremony complied with the constitutional requirements our veterans have sacrificed so much to protect.  The only people who are “angered,” “disappointed,” and/or “outraged” by removing the Bible are a fraction of Christians who wrongfully believe, as you do, that the Bible and Christianity are part of the Constitution and “our very fabric of life as Americans.”  I will explain why this belief is erroneous in just a moment, but first I will ask you this: If the POW/MIA ceremony is intended to honor all service members, including Christians, Jews, Muslims, and non-believers (as I agree it is, along with many other religious faiths), why is the Bible the only religious text you consider to be required as part of the ceremony?  I somehow doubt that if the Torah or the Quran were also included, yet subsequently removed, you would feel similarly outraged.  Despite your claim that service members of all religions, or no religion, are honored by this ceremony, you are not outraged – or even mildly irritated – by the fact that other religious texts are excluded from the display.

 

This brings me to your mistaken belief that the Bible is part of our Constitution and the founding of this country.  Neither the Bible nor any reference to Christianity appears anywhere in the Constitution.  Instead, the Constitution protects the free exercise of ANY religion, or no religion, and prohibits the establishment of any particular religion.  Even assuming that the drafters of the Constitution were Christians and designated rights based on Christian morals, they clearly declined the opportunity to create a Christian nation.

 

The Establishment Clause prohibits any state actor, including the military or any branch thereof, from endorsing one religion over others, or endorsing religion over non-religion.  Any state action or policy endorsing religion government violates the Establishment Clause if any one of the following is shown: (1) its purpose is not secular; (2) its principal/primary effect either advances or inhibits religion; or (3) it fosters an excessive entanglement with religion.  Lemon v. Kurtzman, 403 U.S. 602 (1971).  Including the Bible in a display intended to honor all veterans has no secular purpose, is clearly intended to advance Christianity over other religions, or no religion, and fosters an excessive entanglement between the military and religion.

 

Demanding that the requirements of the Constitution be obeyed does not “take your rights away.”  Instead, it ensures that all of our brave men and women in uniform can enjoy the constitutional rights they sacrifice so much to protect for the rest of us – regardless of their religious beliefs.  How does removing a religious text from a display honoring veterans take away your right to practice the faith of your choice?  Your opinion is not based on the Constitution or religious freedom – it is based merely on your personal view that the Bible and Christianity are “right” and superior to other beliefs.

 

I will not suggest that you move to another country, but I will say that if you do not agree with the requirements of the Establishment Clause or the equal protection of individuals whose religious beliefs differ from yours, that is just tough.  The mandates of the Constitution do not depend on your personal beliefs.

 

Sincerely,

 

Tobanna Barker

MRFF Legal Affairs Coordinator


 

Please, I don’t watch Fox, or CNN or any other talking heads. I read intelligent sources, and clearly you are not in that group. You personally, and professionally have been disgraced for your anti-Christian actions.  For you to even mention the Constitution is a disgrace to the men and women who have defended this country so jerks like you can spew the garbage you do.
I believe we are done.
(name withheld)

You may be done, (name withheld), but when you attack me personally while insisting the garbage you are promoting comes from intelligent sources, please know I’m not.

You may or may not be getting your information from Fox and its ilk, but the nonsense you’re spewing comes from a rankly biased source, whatever it may be.

You may well be ignorant of the religious proselytizing extant in the military today, but my sense is it’s willful ignorance on your part. I suggest you look a bit deeper, find some objective analysis and enjoy the crow you’ll find yourself feasting on
.

Mike Farrell

(MRFF Board of Advisors)


 

I can see why people can’t stand you. Your like the friggin plague, you just don’t go away. I didn’t attack you, I said what you did was wrong. If your so thin skinned, and have this much time to spend emailing me, I suggest you get a job.  Good bye!

(name withheld)


 

Yes, persistence is necessary and appropriate when dealing with the witless.

In which universe do these not qualify as personal attacks? “You personally, and professionally have been disgraced for your anti-Christian actions.  For you to even mention the Constitution is a disgrace to the men and women who have defended this country so jerks like you can spew the garbage you do.”

I have a job. Dealing with fools in my spare time is a hobby.

Mike Farrell

(MRFF Board of Advisors)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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