Skip to comments.Controversy Draws Attention to Military Ban on 'Proselytism'
Posted on 05/08/2013 5:18:18 AM PDT by marshmallow
Washington D.C., May 8, 2013 / 12:08 am (CNA).- Uncertainty over what constitutes coercive proselytism, which is barred by military policy, has led to concern and criticism of recent statements by the U.S. Department of Defense.
Service members can share their faith (evangelize), but must not force unwanted, intrusive attempts to convert others of any faith or no faith to one's beliefs (proselytization), Defense Department spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Nathan Christensen said May 2.
Military commanders take action on complaints of religious harassment based on the gravity of occurrence on a case by case basis, he said in a statement.
Christensen said the Defense Department works to ensure that service members are free to practice their religion in a manner that is respectful of other individuals rights to follow their own belief systems; and in ways that are conducive to good order and discipline.
The statement comes amid concerns regarding reports claiming that Defense Department policy would put Christians at risk of facing court martial for sharing their religious beliefs. The reports cited department statements banning proselytism without defining the term.
New 2012 rules from the U.S. Air Force say superiors must avoid the actual or apparent use of their position to promote their personal religious beliefs to their subordinates or to extend preferential treatment for any religion, USA Today reports.
Concerns particularly focused on an April 23 meeting between several military leaders and Mikey Weinstein, president of the New Mexico-based Military Religious Freedom Foundation, who has characterized his opponents in extreme terms.
In an April 16 opinion piece published at the Huffington Post, Weinstein said he is fighting incredibly well-funded gangs of fundamentalist Christian monsters who force their weaponized and twisted version of Christianity upon their helpless subordinates in our nation's armed forces.
(Excerpt) Read more at catholicnewsagency.com ...
Oh look, a new “-ism” from the people who accuse our side of “putting people in boxes” and “being judgmental.”
I’m friends with a fundamentalist South Korean. This is the condensed version of his story. He was a child when the North overran his village. His family was rescued by Marines. He said, “I wanted to be a Marine. I wanted to be an American. I wanted to save people (meaning from death.) We studied the Marines. They worshiped God and they said that they were here for God as much as Korea and America. We all wanted so to be like them that we converted.”
He recently got back from a pilgrimage to Israel. He has spent his life gently guiding people to Christianity. His story brought tears to my eyes.
Mikey Weinstein needs to be invited into the barracks for a good oldfashioned G.I. blanket party.
Wow. Weinstein is either a liar or has a psychotically active imagination.
By first imposing restraint on Religious Freedom, and then seeming to back off, they have set the stage for over-cautious, self restraint.
Folks will shut up, lest they get too close to the line.
If people know exactly where the line is, they will go up to within a millimeter of it. If the location of the line is unknown, and you have no warning of when you have entered the minefield, then people will be much more timid about approaching its general location.
To a lib, just being a Christian around them matches that description. So DOD, why are you trying to bend over backwards for the 3-5 leftists out of thousands of military on many bases?
Has the actual statement by LCdr Christensen been published somewhere so we can read it without the spin (positive or negative)?
|And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.|
|19||Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,|
|20||teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age."|