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Friday, February 2, 2018



MRFF's Legal Counsel, Robert V. Eye, Esq.,
addresses Brig. Gen. John J. Nichols,
Commander, 509th Bomb Wing
with MRFF's demand that the
unconstitutional promotional
message be corrected.

Click to Enlarge & Read Letter

Excerpts from MRFF Demand Letter above by MRFF Legal Counsel Robert V. Eye

This correspondence is a follow-up to the communications with several of your staff including your Vice Commander, Colonel Mark Ely, initiated by Michael "Mikey" Weinstein on behalf of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) and its Whiteman AFB clients. Mr. Weinstein is the Founder and President of MRFF.

Mr. Weinstein has been contacted by approximately twenty-three USAF Officers, NCOs and USAF civilians1 under your command at Whiteman AFB with concerns that the above-referenced prayer breakfast has been promoted improperly and contrary to U.S. Air Force requirements.

[...] these people of faith also recognize the requirement to uphold the separation of church and state embodied in the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.

Under the standards specified at Chapter 2, Section 2.12 of the Air Force Instruction 1-1 commanding officers must avoid an appearance or inference that a particular religious sect is being promoted.

The promotion of the event done under the auspices of your command status is a problem for at least significant two reasons. First, it infers that you officially endorse preferential treatment for the religious message inherent in the event. Second, as the commander of Whiteman AFB, the message implicit in the event's promotional message is that attendance is mandatory.

The "fix" for the violation of Sec. 2.12 is to revise the event's promotional message by removing your endorsement of it. Such does not diminish the event. But it would bring the event's promotion into conformance with Chapter 2.12 of the Air Force Instruction 1-1 and longstanding applicable United States Supreme Court precedent.

In the absence of a proper and timely revision, such as that suggested above, of the event's promotion, MRFF and its USAF clients under your command reserve the right to seek all available remedies [...]

Statement from Mike Farrell
regarding Copeland Speaking at
Fort Jackson's Prayer Breakfast

As a member of the Board of Advisors of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation I frequently respond to ignorant, angry, vulgar, bigoted, often specifically anti-Semitic, completely baseless attacks on the work of the MRFF from people who identify themselves as Christians. Because we support the freedom of thought, the freedom of choice, the freedom of belief or non-belief, as is guaranteed every American by our Constitution and its expanded body of laws, these people evidently feel that because their particular belief system is the only "right" one, thus the one to which everyone must subscribe, they are threatened by the thought that other belief systems or none may be, for some, as valid as their own is to them.

When a self-described "Christian extremist" who claims that those who suffer from PTSD do so because they lack the proper faith, the "right" belief system, is invited to address our troops, his presence and his message carry with them the imprimatur of their commanding officer. When that happens, the rights of the women and men he addresses are being grossly violated, as are the laws of the land and the regulations of the U.S. Military. Because the law and military regulations require the separation of church and state, it is urgently important that someone who arrogates to himself the right to discriminate on behalf of God cannot be given the forum to do so by those in command of our troops.

I urge Major General Pete Johnson to withdraw the invitation tendered Kenneth Copeland to speak at Fort Jackson's 2018 National Prayer Breakfast.

Mike Farrell, Veteran, USMC
Actor and Human Rights Activist
Military Religious Freedom Foundation Advisory Board Member

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