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Cruz Asks Defense Sec. Esper to Address Department’s “Culture of Hostility Toward Religion”

“Service members give their lives to defend the principle of religious freedom enshrined in our Constitution, and that principle must be protected within the military, These unlawful infringements must end.” – Sen. Ted Cruz in a July 9th letter to Secretary of Defense Mark Esper

FoxNews.com reports that

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, accused the Defense Department of “religious discrimination” Monday in a strongly-worded letter that pressed Defense Secretary Mark Esper on how his department planned to address “its culture of hostility towards religion.”

“The Department must do better. It must take affirmative steps to stop those in its ranks from targeting religious individuals and violating the United States Constitution,” Cruz said.

He specifically sought information on whether the department had brought discipline in a case involving a Christian Air Force veteran, Jay Lorenzen, who was slated to speak at an annual training for Marine Corps (USMC) JAG reservists last month. The talk was scrapped after the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) relayed its reservist clients’ concerns about Lorenzen’s beliefs influencing his remarks.

MRFF President Michael Weinstein told Fox News that Cruz’s letter was “ridiculous” and “nothing more than red meat being thrown to the fundamentalist Christian electorate that’s out there.”

Weinstein similarly called for discipline in the Lorenzen incident but said the punishment should be applied to whoever approved Lorenzen to speak. He told Fox News on Monday that he hasn’t received any updates on potential reprimands.

A class itinerary provided by MRFF shows Lorenzen was scheduled for three presentations on “leadership.” Although the document doesn’t explicitly indicate religious instruction, Weinstein pointed Fox News to an included biography that highlighted, among other things, Lorenzen’s work with Campus Crusaders for Christ. The bio also links to a separate event — “Life and Leadership: Reflections from a Lazy River” — in which Lorenzen tours the Civil War battlefield at Gettysburg and offers Christian instruction.

First Liberty Institute, which represents a JAG reservist opposed to the cancellation, told Fox News that Lorenzen wouldn’t have included religious elements in his talk. Lorenzen himself has declined to comment on the situation.

“We are grateful for Sen. Cruz’s tireless defense of religious liberty and his dedication to our service members,” First Liberty Special Counsel Jeremy Dys said on Monday. “He is due an answer for why the Department of Defense appears to be  ‘vetting’ speakers according to their religious.  No one should be canceled because of their religious beliefs.”

The USMC declined to comment and Esper’s office did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment. The USMC previously provided a statement confirming the cancellation but not explaining why.

“A virtual battlefield tour of Gettysburg using a video from the National Park Service was scheduled as part of the annual training. Some of the participating Marines raised concerns about a former military officer who volunteered as an outside virtual presenter. In response to the concerns, the leadership of the unit decided to keep the virtual training internal to the Marines,” said Capt. Joseph Butterfield, Communication Strategy & Operations Officer

Shortly after Lorenzen’s canceled speech caught press attention, Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., met with “several high-level DoD officials,” according to an aide for Collins.

“The DoD officials at the meeting acknowledged the rise in communication between commands across the globe and outside groups that seek to intervene in matters involving religious liberty,” the aide said in an email to Fox News. “In response to these, the officials at the meeting recognized that there must be adequate training for commanders to ensure they handle such attempts at intervention correctly according to DoD policy and the practices of each branch.”

In a June letter, Cruz called out Weinstein’s group as “waging a campaign against the chaplaincy, and frankly, against religious freedom in the military generally.”

Weinstein maintains that many JAGs complained to him about Lorenzen and that he “represents just under 70,000 active duty sailors, soldiers, Marines, airmen, cadets, midshipmen, DoD civilian personnel, and veterans.” That includes, he said, about 95% who are practicing Christians.

Both MRFF and Retired Army Col. Lawrence Wilkerson sought to participate in Collins’ meeting with DoD, but Collins’ office told Fox News it was only open to DoD officials and members of Congress. Wilkerson, a member of MRFF’s advisory board, told Fox News last month that it was difficult for him to believe that Lorenzen wouldn’t “resort” to religious language when discussing leadership.

“In the past when we’ve dealt with people like this, we have been more than reinforced in our views,” he said, noting that’s he’s spoken with others who have allegedly attended Lorenzen’s events. He also indicated that religious talks could disrupt cohesion among service members, who have become increasingly more diverse in their religious views.

“You look at any rifle squad in the military today,” he said. “You’re going to find a Muslim, you’re going to find a Jew, you’re going to find agnostics, you’re going to find atheists … so, when you start focusing on a particular religion inside that squad or that platoon, you start undermining good order and discipline, and morale.”

Road apples.

in the past I have written about my Daddy (Southern colloquialism for male parental unit) and my Uncles, and their service in World War II. I have also had friends that have served over the years, and one who is still serving in the Air National Guard.

All of these men were/are Patriots. They enlisted out of a duty to God and Country.

“God and Country”. Now, there’s a phrase that you may not hear much anymore.

You see, the 44th President of the United States, Barack Hussein Obama, (our Lord and Savior, as Jamie Foxx referred to him) was on a Crusade to remove Christianity and any reference to the God of Abraham and Isaac, from our Armed Forces.

In 2014, the Pentagon was caught teaching soldiers that the Christian Evangelical “American Family Association”, was a “Terrorist” Organization, needless to say, after Americans gave them “H – e – double hockey sticks” about that stupidity, they had to stop that training class.

After that, the Obama Administration, through their operatives at the Pentagon, decided to remove the phrase “So help me God” for the oath that Americans take, when they enlist in the United States Air Force. It is now “optional”.

The Obama Administration’s quest to remove the God of Abraham from America’s Armed Forces is the result of the influence of Mikey Weinstein.

Who is this clown, you ask?(You probably did not use the word “clown”, but I did. And, I’m holding my temper.)

As the Fox News article above reports, Weinstein is the head of an organization, known as the “Military Religious Freedom Foundation”.

Per discoverthenetworks.org:

Established in 2006, the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) describes itself as “a watchdog group” that is “dedicated to ensuring that all members of the United States Armed Forces fully receive the Constitutional guarantees of religious freedom to which they and all Americans are entitled …” The organization’s primary objective is to eradicate the religious bias and “coercion” that it deems prevalent among high-ranking Christian members of the U.S. military. Toward that end, MRFF functions as “a clearinghouse for violations reported by military and civilian personnel,” offering “complete anonymity” to all complainants.

Headed by retired Air Force lawyer Michael L. “Mikey” Weinstein, MRFF declares: “At a time when the United States is encouraging greater religious freedom in Muslim nations, it is imperative [sic] upon America to show by example that religious pluralism is a viable and preferred option. Any sign of hypocrisy in United States policy … toward the free exercise of religion within the military makes it more difficult to convince others to follow our nation’s chosen path.”

In December 2006, MRFF issued a “Compliance Report on the Pervasive Violations of the United States Constitutional Religious Freedoms of Military Personnel.” “Military and civilian personnel,” says this document, “are subjected to blatant and unlawful displays of religiosity at mandatory formations, religious bias, and illegal proselytizing by their peers and superiors alike.” The report identifies “pervasive violations of United States Constitutional religious freedoms of military personnel” in five major areas:

(a) Blatant displays of religious symbolism on military garb.

(b) Placement of a biblical quotation above the door of the Air and Space Basic Course classroom.

(c) Illegal use of official military e-mail accounts to send e-mails containing religious rhetoric.

(d) Attempts by missionary organizations to train active-duty military personnel to evangelize their subordinates and peers.

(e) Military leadership openly discussing their commitment to bring religion into the military.

Notwithstanding the disclaimer, MRFF states: “[S]erious violations were committed by prominent figures featured on the organization’s ten-minute promotional video. … [S]everal members of military leadership appear in the video, dressed in full uniform openly discussing their personal connection to Jesus and how they make this connection part of the work they do in their professional capacity each day. {They] state that, among other things, with the help of Christian Embassy, they hold bible studies while on duty in the workplace, many times in their offices.”

Ohhhh….how horrible. Why…morality and ethical behavior may break out at any moment!!!

And, Lord knows, the Obama Deep State Leftovers in the Pentagon want that to happen.

Since America is an overwhelmingly majority Christian nation, that means that the majority of those i service to our Sovereign Nation are also Christan men and women.

Their Religious Freedom is also Constitutionally Protected.

It is not subject to the whims of Popular Culture or the Tyranny of the Minority.

This is something that the Secretary of Defense and the President need to “discuss” and follow up with positive action.

Those who continue to attempt to publish and harangue Christian Americans because of their faith need to remember one thing:

God always has the last word.

Until He Comes,

KJ

 
kingsjester

Written by kingsjester

Do you ever feel helpless about what's going on? Do you turn the sound down when a member of "The Resistance" speaks? Do you talk back to the television? I understand fully. My blog contains the views of a 61 year old Christian American Conservative. I was raised by members of The Greatest Generation. My father landed at Normandy. I love this country. By the way, how did that Hopey-Changey Thing work out for ya?

I have been writing daily since April of 2010. I enjoy researching and sharing my thoughts with you. It is a privilege and it beats the heck out of punching a hole in the wall.

Thanks for reading my posts!

I'll keep writing....

Until He Comes,

KJ

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