The Obama Administration has released a statement saying that it “strongly objects" to an amendment in theNational Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would protect the religious freedoms of men and women in the armed forces. The amendment (Section 530), offered by U.S. Representative John Fleming (R-La.), would specifically expand the “protection of rights of conscience of members of the Armed Forces and chaplains,” according to language in the amendment.
In its statement of objection the Obama Administration noted that the amendment “would require the Armed Forces to accommodate, except in cases of military necessity, 'actions and speech' reflecting the 'conscience, moral principles, or religious beliefs of the member.'” The White House complained that by “limiting the discretion of commanders to address potentially problematic speech and actions within their units, this provision would have a significant adverse effect on good order, discipline, morale, and mission accomplishment.”
Fleming insisted that the amendment is necessary to counter the increasing animosity toward religious freedom among military personnel. “The men and women who put their lives on the line to defend our freedoms should not have their own religious freedom jeopardized during their military service,” the congressman said in a statement when he introduced the measure June 5. He emphasized that the amendment would help “ensure that men and women of faith will not be discriminated against in the Armed Forces and will be free to exercise their religious beliefs.”
He noted that some armed forces personnel, “particularly chaplains, feel like their ability to execute their duties is being greatly limited by some of the policies and actions in the Pentagon.” While “steps to protect the religious liberties of our Armed Forces were taken in last year’s NDAA,” Fleming recalled, “troubling reports indicate that the military may be focused only on protecting beliefs of service members, and not the exercise or expression of those beliefs.”
Among the examples of such “troubling reports” over the past year was news that:
– Training material used by the Army Reserve had identified Protestant Christians, Catholics, and Orthodox Jews as “religious extremist” similar to al-Qaeda and Hamas.
– The U.S. Army blocked military personnel from accessing the website of the Southern Baptist Convention, citing unnamed “hostile content” on the site.
– The Defense Department confirmed that military personnel could face disciplinary action — including court-martial — for sharing their faith with others.
– Christian prayers were temporarily banned during funeral services for veterans at Houston’s National Cemetery.
– Bibles were prohibited for a short time at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.
– Crosses and a steeple were removed from a chapel in Afghanistan after military officials determined they were antagonistic to other religions.
Following the administration's statement of opposition to the measure, Fleming said that it appeared the president is attempting to block religious freedom among the troops. “With its statement, the White House is now endorsing military reprimands of members who keep a Bible on their desk or express a religious belief,” he told Fox News. “This Administration is aggressively hostile towards religious beliefs that it deems to be politically incorrect.”
Several conservative Christian policy groups responded to the White House statement, with Kellie Fiedorek, litigation counsel forAlliance Defending Freedom, arguing that the response demonstrates that President Obama clearly “opposes constitutional religious freedom for service men and women.” Fiedorek called the response the “latest example of this administration’s hostility toward religious service members. Antagonism toward people of faith — namely Christians — in the military is real, and it is disappointing that the President is unwilling to support laws that protect and defend the basic liberty of religious freedom.”
Similarly, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council said President Obama's opposition to the amendment “reveals that this Administration has gone beyond accommodating the anti-Christian activists who want to remove any vestige of Christianity from the military, to aiding them by blocking this bipartisan measure.”
Perkins observed that the the Fleming amendment “protects the right of service members to not only hold religious beliefs, but to act on them and freely practice those beliefs as long as they pose no threat to U.S. Constitutional liberties. This chilling suppression of religious freedom is driving faith underground in our military and will eventually drive it out. This not only deprives those who serve of the benefits that flow from religious participation, but it undermines the moral foundation of the world’s most powerful military and the country they serve.”
"Aristotle the Hun" was the name given to me more than 30 years ago when a friend noticed that in spite of my intellect I was still an Iowa farm boy.
Rev. Sam Sewell, is Director of Best Self USA, a Pastoral Psychotherapist, serves on the faculty of Naples Community Hospital as an instructor for Clinical Pastoral Education, President of the Theological Center in Naples, a member of Mensa where he serves as Gifted Youth Coordinator, a U.S. Navy Veteran, and a Member of the Association For Intelligence Officers. He is a frequent commentator on mental health and religious issues.His award winning research on family issues is published in several languages. Member of Sigma Delta Chi Honor Society
WELCOME TO BEST SELF USA - Nationwide Counseling and Life Skills
"Though defensive violence will always be 'a sad necessity' in the eyes of men of principle, it would be still more unfortunate if wrongdoers should dominate just men." - St. Augustine
"A new idea is first condemned as ridiculous, and then dismissed as trivial, until finally it becomes what everybody knows." -
"This is the real task before us: to reassert our commitment as a nation to a law higher than our own, to renew our spiritual strength. Only by building a wall of such spiritual resolve can we, as a free people, hope to protect our own heritage and make it someday the birthright of all men." --Ronald Reagan
A patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his government." -- Edward Abbey
"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things; the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks nothing worth a war, is worse. A man who has nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance at being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself." John Stuart Mill
"A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government." ~~~George Washington
"I'd rather entrust the government of the United States to the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than to the faculty of Harvard University." William F. Buckley, Jr.
"Conservatives are enemies of the government. Liberals are enemies of the nation because they are not enemies of the government." Aristotle the Hun
"If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it?" Albert Einstein
"Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass...it's about learning how to dance in the rain." ANON
"That government is best which governs least." Thomas Paine
“A nation that substitutes emotion and empathy for rational thought will eventually digress into the Dark Ages,” Congressman Steve King (R-IA),
INTEGRITY: The highest courage is to dare to be ourself in the face of adversity. Choosing ethics over convenience and truth over popularity means there is never a wrong time to do the right thing.
Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies.
The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.
They may be more likely to go to Heaven for good intentions yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.~ C. S. Lewis
"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." ANON
"Ordinary and Marvelous" and "The Secrets of the Universe"
This blog was started to give people a source of information they can trust. I almost never make the mistake of including scams, false rumors, or poorly researched items. I encourage readers to alert me if they spot an anomaly. It will be quickly corrected.
The search function is in the upper left hand corner. Readers are invited to cut and paste from this blog to your own emails. Each subject title has an embedded link so cut and paste the title and the first few lines. That will direct a person back to this blog.
Below the usual ad and personal profile you will find links to topics located on the right hand side of the page. You may find it easier to select topics of interest to you rather than scrolling all topics as they occur chronologically. (Gee, that's a six syllable word!)
The government is conspiring against the citizens. The citizens have pitchforks, torches, tea bags, tea parties, Grand Juries and the Constitution. The government doesn't stand a chance!
Our other web pages-blogs
The famous Chapter 16 from "I Fired My Doctors" thathas become a "best seller" as a separate publication.
"The stress management chapter alone is worth the price of the book.”
Selwyn Mills, PhD