I just wanted to send you a note of thanks for all that you and MRFF do to ensure that there is a level religious playing field for all members of the US military. I cannot imagine how difficult your burden is, but if the emails that I receive from you on a regular basis are any indication, you must have your hands full 24/7/365.
This latest attempt to try and designate Protestantism (“Strong Bonds”) as the default religion of the ANG was really beyond the pale. I couldn’t believe that someone who wears the uniform of the United States military would put down on paper such a discriminatory policy/program.
When I was a servicemember, I can’t ever remember this being such a big deal. Actually, I can’t remember religion being such a big deal. Maybe that’s because I was stationed overseas in the late ’80s at a small AF base in Italy. Maybe it was because at the time I belonged to a minority faith. But I can’t imagine any of the chaplains that I knew then would create a discriminatory policy/program like this. It smacks of dominionism, not of openness and brotherhood. Those are the values that we should be instilling in our brothers in arms.
I wholeheartedly support what you do, you hold a unique and essential position of watchdog outside of the Air Force and the DOD structures in general. What a shame it is that the chaplains who wrote to you would fear going up their own chains of command or to the Inspector General to seek redress. It is even more troubling that they cannot sign their own name to their emails without fearing recrimination/retaliation. This is new to me, and it doesn’t bode well for the future of a military that is welcoming to all faiths or those who follow no faith.
Again, thank you for all that you do and please pay no attention to those who write such juvenile messages as those I’ve seen in your MRFF Inbox. Take comfort in the knowledge that their insults speak more about the authors than they do about you. Be well.
XXXXXXOHL, M.Sc., XXNE, CCIE