"Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past." Orwell-- The US is probably moving toward becoming a heavily controlled Rightist state. This blog is an effort to document how that happened.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

RELIGIOUS INDOCTRINATION AT THE AIR FORCE ACADEMY

There have been numerous reports that evangelical officers and chaplains have been pressuring cadets to become evangelicals. Jewish and non-evangelical cadets complained about intolerance and discrimination. A parent of a cadet complained that his son was called "a filthy Jew."

The campus newspaper carried an advertisement signed by almost 300 Air Force personnel urging the cadets to get saved. Some professors began classes with prayer, several told cadets to get saved by the end of the semester. A coach once posted a huge evangelical banner in a locker room. Cadets are told they will go to hell if they are not born again.

It was alleged that Brigadier General John Weida, commondant of cadets, employed coded language to urge evangelical cadets to convert others. He later admitted that religious coercion on campus was a problem, but he had no idea how to deal with it. It would take decades to solve. The Academy officially sponsored a screening of Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ.

Dr. Kristen Leslie from the Yale Divinity School issued what is known as the Yale Report, which complained if "pervasive evangelical" bias at the academy. Academy officials criticized the report and attempted to ignore it. Captain Melinda Morton, a Lutheran chaplain, had signed the report and was ordered by the chief chaplain Colonel Michael Whittington, to unsign it. Reverend Morton refused to retract her signature and defended the report. She was transferred to Okinawa before the end of her tour, and resigned her commission as a result. The Air Force conducted its own investigation, which only acknowledged a few problems.

In Congress, Representative David Obey complained about this situation and was denounced Republican John Hostettler of Indiana for participating in the "long war on Christianity in America..." The Hoosier added that Democrats are given to "denigrating and demonizing Christians." Obey offered a ryder calling for an impartial and thoorough investigation, but it was defeated 218-198.

All this is the more troublking in view of the fact that the numbere of evangelical chaplains in the servives is increasing exponentially while the ranks of Catholic and mainline Protestant military clergy are thinning our. The mainline Protestants have developed serious problems with militarism since Vietnam, and there are few Catholic priests to send to the Armed Service. Other reasons for concern were the number of Christian symbols on display at the 2004 Republican National Convention, and the fact that Lieutenant General William Boynton remains a top Pentagon planner. He had said publically that his American god was far superior to the Muslim god. Add to this the Pentagon effort to produce its own version of the Bible, and one might see the makings of a very unhealthy pattern.

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About Me

Sherm spent seven years writing an analytical chronicle of what the Republicans have been up to since the 1970s. It discusses elements in the Republican coalition, their ideologies, strategies, informational and financial resources, and election shenanigans. Abuses of power by the Reagan and G. W. Bush administration and the Republican Congresses are detailed. The New Republican Coalition : Its Rise and Impact, The Seventies to Present (Publish America) can be acquired by calling 301-695-1707. On line, go to http://www.publishamerica.com/shopping. It can also be obtained through the on-line operations of Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Do not consider purchasing it if you are looking for something that mirrors the mainstream media!
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