Just a statement of support

Good morning Bekki,

 

I am a 1978 graduate of the Academy and happen to be in Colorado Springs for our 40th class reunion.  Until this week, I had never heard of the MRFF or Mikey Weinstein.  However, after having read his story as a result of a somewhat random Google search, and then hearing a reference to him in a conversation with a chapel wall guide, I feel compelled to pass along my personal support to him, and your organization.

 

While I respect each person’s constitutional right to freedom of religion and freedom of speech, I am concerned that there is a strong element within our nation, and our military, that equates being an American with being Christian.  I was raised a Methodist but have long since stopped being a practicing Christian because I don’t feel that represents my spiritual beliefs.  I also don’t feel that religion is something that should be publicly promoted or on display.  To me, religion, or better yet, spirituality should be personal and private.  Making it such a prominent aspect of our public life, our governmental discourse and our military culture is troubling.  It is very true that in June of 1974 I swore allegiance to the constitution of the United States, not to a Christian brotherhood.  Nowhere in the constitution is there any reference to a Christian nation.  That was, in my opinion, a very deliberate decision by our founding fathers and it should be understood and adhered to.

 

I remember with fondness a time in my childhood when people attended the church of their choice because they felt a sense of personal growth by their affiliation with a particular congregation.  The time that they spent in their house of worship made them better people, in whatever way they chose.  Religion was a personal journey of growth, not a war against anyone who didn’t share their views, or the doctrines promoted by their group.  When you moved to a new community or joined a new company, you weren’t asked on day #1 “Have you found a church family?”  The words “Have a blessed day” weren’t spoken routinely because being blessed was a personal matter, not one that was anointed upon you by those around you who were prepared to lead you to salvation.  I miss those days.

 

So, please share with Mikey the fact that, as at least one other 1978 graduate has said, I will personally always welcome you as a graduate of the Academy.  Defending our nation goes far beyond bearing arms against foreign enemies in combat.  Sometimes it means standing for the liberties that our founding fathers intended.

 

With my very best regards,

(name withheld)

Class of 1978


 

 

 

 

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