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Letter: Removing faith from our military demoralizes troops

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Posted: Saturday, November 9, 2013 12:00 am

Many of us have or have had a member of our family in the military. Some fought and died, and are dying today, in an effort to protect our country and the freedoms we so carelessly take for granted, or so it seems at times.

We always think of our enemies as being “over there” somewhere on foreign soil. We need to think again.

Recently General William G. “Jerry” Boykin, a retired three-star officer who served 36 years in the military from 1971 to 2007, and who is now a member of Family Research Council (801 G St. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001; www.frc.org) issued a report regarding religious liberty in the military. The following is an excerpt from it:

“On April 30, 2013, Fox News reported: ‘Pentagon: Religious proselytizing is not permitted. Religious proselytizing is not a ban on religious coercion (which already is illegal), but if implemented will become an outright ban on the free exercise of faith by all military members, even chaplains.’”

This is not about our military, common service persons or their leadership, but he is talking about President Obama and his civilian appointees who are slowly but surely chipping away at military discipline, readiness and morale.

Now comes an assault on Christianity and religious liberty in the military. There would be an outright ban on even saying “Jesus.” To do so anywhere in the military would result in being charged with treason and probably court martial.

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, with other civilian appointees to the Pentagon, is working to develop policies to carry out such procedures against any Christians in the military who express or share their faith even now.

To all you readers, consider well what a demoralizing effect this would have on our military. Contact Gen. Boykin for more complete information to find out how you can get involved.

Louise Dowdell


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Welcome to the discussion.


  • Joanne Bobin posted at 12:58 pm on Tue, Nov 12, 2013.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    Apologies, then, Mr. Paglia.

    I took your post to mean that along with all of the things you mentioned being demoralizing to our troops, there was the imlication that being "prohibited" from practicing their own faith only added to that demoralization. That is how I took your comment.

  • Kevin Paglia posted at 7:27 pm on Mon, Nov 11, 2013.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 2111

    Not sure WHERE you get the idea I believe the contents of the letter since nothing I said supports the letter, but quite the opposite offers real reasons that troops may feel demoralized.

  • Joanne Bobin posted at 11:26 am on Mon, Nov 11, 2013.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    I'm assuming from your post that you believe the information in this letter.

  • Joanne Bobin posted at 11:25 am on Mon, Nov 11, 2013.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    I thought you spent your time in the Marines in Vietnam - at least that is what your previous posts stated.

  • Joanne Bobin posted at 10:03 am on Sun, Nov 10, 2013.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    It is always easy to identify the letter writers who receive chain emails and/or Facebook postings and whose first instinct is to write a letter to the editor to share information that they haven't bothered to check out or verify.

    One must wonder how dangerous this practice is and how things like this bogus "policy" that the letter writer just took for FACT could get out of hand.

    Actually, when will people start to realize that Facebook is one of the most dangerous Internet phenomenons of our day? Anybody with any sense would immediately close their Facebook account and make sure all of their information was deleted.

  • Ed Walters posted at 1:05 pm on Sat, Nov 9, 2013.

    the old dog Posts: 638

    Being thousands of miles from home was difficult to get used to, for a week or so. However, upon arriving on Okinawa and getting situated, like all good Marines we looked for the first place to get a beer. I was stationed on the island for 15 months and religion never entered the picture. Sunday was the perfect time to let a hang-over wear off. I might have changed my tune if someone was trying to kill me, however that didn`t happen, when my tour was up, I asked to spend my last year on the island. Get aboard ship Marine and back to the world we came, hated to leave. Come to think of it, I don`t beleive I saw a chaplain the entire time I was stationed there, for some it was necessary, for me a building with a mirrored ball would do.[wink]

  • Kevin Paglia posted at 9:39 am on Sat, Nov 9, 2013.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 2111

    I thought being deployed to fight questionable wars/battles with low support, less than the best equipment because of political maneuvering, extended deployments well beyond what they were told whole they miss their families growing up and coming home to financial and employment issues was demoralizing.

  • robert maurer posted at 8:32 am on Sat, Nov 9, 2013.

    mason day Posts: 488

    A more complete story can be seen at www.snopes.com>Home>Politics>Military and snopes.com ban on military proselytizing. In summary the ban forbids soldiers and chaplains from pushing their religions or religious beliefs on others. I see nothing wrong with that, since I hate it if anyone does that to me and others probably feel the same way.

  • Walter Chang posted at 7:37 am on Sat, Nov 9, 2013.

    Walt Posts: 1189

    "On April 30, 2013, Fox News reported"

    Louise didn't see the Faux report or she would of written in May.

    She got her information in a circulating Facebook post that contained little truth.

    She's distressed again, needlessly, as nothing has changed with military.

    Ask a Chaplain.



  • John Lucas posted at 5:40 am on Sat, Nov 9, 2013.

    John Lucas Posts: 2730

    The idea that there is an assault on religious liberty by the government for personal religious liberty for all military personnel is ridiculous and an outright lie. Anyone in the military can have any personal religious conviction they want as long as they do not try to force it on others in the military. Google religion and the Air force academy and you will find that coercion and hazing was being practiced by religious zealots on the personal religious conviction of those who disagreed. There have been many instances on military commanders forcing people to be subject to proselytizing involuntarily.

    What you and General Boykin are angry about is that your religious liberty is being violated because you cannot force others to listen to your message. I repeat. All military personnel can believe anything thy want as long as they do not try to force it on others.


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