Monday, November 14, 2005

Ryun, Tiahrt, Brownback, endorse religious indoctrination at Air Force Academy

They and the other signers are:
part of the same old crew that does whatever the TV preachers tell them to do
The new regulations were a response to concern among cadets that their teachers and commanding officers made evangelical Christianity and official part of their instruction. As a result, senior officers are discouraged from discussing their religion in contexts where cadets might feel pressure to conform to their CO's religious beliefs, public prayer was kept in areas where individuals could choose not to participate, and chaplains were asked not to leave cadets with the impression that attendance at religious services was mandatory.

Sounds fair, right?

But Ryun, Tiahrt and Brownback signed a letter calling on the Air Force to rescind these rules. A Focus on Families spokeswoman said “We should be encouraging spiritual reflection at the Air Force Academy and the other service academies."

I'd say that we shouldn't discourage spiritual reflection, but the Air Force Academy isn't a seminary. The people there are learning to fight for America, not run monasteries. There's no excuse for evangelical officers to tell Jewish students that they killed Christ, that half of the cadets have heard religious slurs, or that Christians should get special treatment.

It's no accident that Focus on Families' founder, James Dobson, preaches right by the Academy.

Dobson is a well-known Dominionist, a member of the movement to replace the Constitution with Biblical rule. Can it be accidental that his group is pushing to rescind rules which prevent the Academy from holding religious services in off-campus churches, or that the commandant once told the students that their first duty was to serve God.

The commissioning oath that the students take requires their allegiance to the nation and its Constitution. That's their job, and that's what the Academy is there to train them for.