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Air Force Academy Falcons ‘Tebow’ Prayer Circle under Investigation

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  • Air Force Academy Falcons ‘Tebow’ Prayer Circle under Investigation



    A decade after the Air Force Academy football team invited controversy and censure over an “I am a member of Team Jesus” banner in its locker room, the Falcons again appear to be striking a decidedly Christian pose, its members dropping to one knee and holding hands in a public pre-game prayer circle.

    The academy issued a statement saying it is investigating the practice after cadets and faculty brought it to the attention of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, a watchdog group.

    “The United States Air Force Academy is attentive to all religious freedom concerns, and we are conducting an inquiry into the complaint,” a statement from the school said. “The Air Force is dedicated to maintaining an environment in which people can realize their highest potential, regardless of personal religious or other beliefs.”
    http://www.military.com/daily-news/2...estigated.html

    The AF football players do not have a right to do this in the stadium and in team jerseys any more than they would have the right to participate at a political event thus attired. By doing that at an official function, which is what an academy football game is, they are giving the impression that the Air Force as a whole is endorsing their brand of religion, thus violating the separation of church and state.

    Jefferson wrote, "I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State."

    The Air Force, by tacitly condoning this behavior, is eroding that separation because this is in effect endorsing the cadets’ brand of Christianity. As a lifelong Catholic I frankly resent this and I can only imagine how someone that is not even Christian might feel about this highly inappropriate behavior. If the cadets want to do that, they should do in civvies at a church of their choice.
    Give me a fast ship and the wind at my back for I intend to sail in harms way! (John Paul Jones)

    Initiated Chief Petty Officer
    Hard core! Old School! Deal with it!

  • #2
    Prayer Police...
    {}

    "Any story sounds true until someone tells the other side and sets the record straight." -Proverbs 18:17

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by BorderRuffian View Post
      Prayer Police...
      If they were LGBT cadets, dropping to their knees, holding hands and doing anything other than praying, it would be OK with the libwits.
      Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Bass_Man86 View Post




        http://www.military.com/daily-news/2...estigated.html

        The AF football players do not have a right to do this in the stadium and in team jerseys any more than they would have the right to participate at a political event thus attired. By doing that at an official function, which is what an academy football game is, they are giving the impression that the Air Force as a whole is endorsing their brand of religion, thus violating the separation of church and state.

        Jefferson wrote, "I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State."

        The Air Force, by tacitly condoning this behavior, is eroding that separation because this is in effect endorsing the cadets’ brand of Christianity. As a lifelong Catholic I frankly resent this and I can only imagine how someone that is not even Christian might feel about this highly inappropriate behavior. If the cadets want to do that, they should do in civvies at a church of their choice.
        You clearly don't have the slightest clue as to what Jefferson wrote in his letter to the Danbury Baptists.


        The Danbury Baptists' letter to Thomas Jefferson

        Jefferson's letter to the Danbury Baptists

        The Danbury Baptists were seeking support from Pres. Jefferson in their conflict with the State of Connecticut.
        Our sentiments are uniformly on the side of religious liberty--that religion is at all times and places a matter between God and individuals--that no man ought to suffer in name, person, or effects on account of his religious opinions--that the legitimate power of civil government extends no further than to punish the man who works ill to his neighbors; But, sir, our constitution of government is not specific. Our ancient charter together with the law made coincident therewith, were adopted as the basis of our government, at the time of our revolution; and such had been our laws and usages, and such still are; that religion is considered as the first object of legislation; and therefore what religious privileges we enjoy (as a minor part of the state) we enjoy as favors granted, and not as inalienable rights; and these favors we receive at the expense of such degrading acknowledgements as are inconsistent with the rights of freemen.


        The State gov't was treating religious liberties as "as favors granted, and not as inalienable rights."

        Pres. Jefferson agreed with the sentiments of the Danbury Baptists; noting that the "wall of separation" prohibited Congress from meddling in religion...

        To messers Nehemiah Dodge, Ephraim Robbins, & Stephen S. Nelson, a committee of the Danbury Baptist association in the state of Connecticut.

        Gentlemen

        The affectionate sentiments of esteem and approbation which you are so good as to express towards me, on behalf of the Danbury Baptist association, give me the highest satisfaction. my duties dictate a faithful and zealous pursuit of the interests of my constituents, & in proportion as they are persuaded of my fidelity to those duties, the discharge of them becomes more and more pleasing.

        Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between Church & State. Congress thus inhibited from acts respecting religion, and the Executive authorised only to execute their acts, I have refrained from prescribing even those occasional performances of devotion, practiced indeed by the Executive of another nation as the legal head of its church, but subject here, as religious exercises only to the voluntary regulations and discipline of each respective sect. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.

        I reciprocate your kind prayers for the protection & blessing of the common father and creator of man, and tender you for yourselves & your religious association assurances of my high respect & esteem.

        (signed) Thomas Jefferson
        Jan.1.1802

        The "wall of separation" protects the God-given right of Air Force cadets to freely exercise their religious beliefs. It does not prohibit the free exercise of religion on gubmint property.
        Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by The Doctor View Post
          You clearly don't have the slightest clue as to what Jefferson wrote in his letter to the Danbury Baptists.


          The Danbury Baptists' letter to Thomas Jefferson

          Jefferson's letter to the Danbury Baptists

          The Danbury Baptists were seeking support from Pres. Jefferson in their conflict with the State of Connecticut.
          Our sentiments are uniformly on the side of religious liberty--that religion is at all times and places a matter between God and individuals--that no man ought to suffer in name, person, or effects on account of his religious opinions--that the legitimate power of civil government extends no further than to punish the man who works ill to his neighbors; But, sir, our constitution of government is not specific. Our ancient charter together with the law made coincident therewith, were adopted as the basis of our government, at the time of our revolution; and such had been our laws and usages, and such still are; that religion is considered as the first object of legislation; and therefore what religious privileges we enjoy (as a minor part of the state) we enjoy as favors granted, and not as inalienable rights; and these favors we receive at the expense of such degrading acknowledgements as are inconsistent with the rights of freemen.


          The State gov't was treating religious liberties as "as favors granted, and not as inalienable rights."

          Pres. Jefferson agreed with the sentiments of the Danbury Baptists; noting that the "wall of separation" prohibited Congress from meddling in religion...

          To messers Nehemiah Dodge, Ephraim Robbins, & Stephen S. Nelson, a committee of the Danbury Baptist association in the state of Connecticut.

          Gentlemen

          The affectionate sentiments of esteem and approbation which you are so good as to express towards me, on behalf of the Danbury Baptist association, give me the highest satisfaction. my duties dictate a faithful and zealous pursuit of the interests of my constituents, & in proportion as they are persuaded of my fidelity to those duties, the discharge of them becomes more and more pleasing.

          Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between Church & State. Congress thus inhibited from acts respecting religion, and the Executive authorised only to execute their acts, I have refrained from prescribing even those occasional performances of devotion, practiced indeed by the Executive of another nation as the legal head of its church, but subject here, as religious exercises only to the voluntary regulations and discipline of each respective sect. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.

          I reciprocate your kind prayers for the protection & blessing of the common father and creator of man, and tender you for yourselves & your religious association assurances of my high respect & esteem.

          (signed) Thomas Jefferson
          Jan.1.1802

          The "wall of separation" protects the God-given right of Air Force cadets to freely exercise their religious beliefs. It does not prohibit the free exercise of religion on gubmint property.
          You clearly have not served in uniform in any capacity Doc, and please do not blow your smoke up my ass. The AF Academy is dead wrong on this one and so are you. You can go to the church/temple/mosque whatever of your choice, but the AF Academy (as a military organization) cannot be seen to endorse any flavor of religion. Even a flavor that you may find palatable.
          Give me a fast ship and the wind at my back for I intend to sail in harms way! (John Paul Jones)

          Initiated Chief Petty Officer
          Hard core! Old School! Deal with it!

          Comment


          • #6
            The Academy has totally failed to stop the rape of female cadets after more than a decade, but the Religious GESTAPO is going to do better?

            The Academy trains future officers to, among other things, defend the Constitution which includes freedom of religion...by denying them that right?

            What happens on Sunday at the Academy Chapel, when cadets in uniform gather by formations and march to openly worship?

            Talk about PC BS...

            Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by The Doctor View Post
              If they were LGBT cadets, dropping to their knees, holding hands and doing anything other than praying, it would be OK with the libwits.
              LOL, I wouldn't doubt that, it's not the same Military that I served in.
              Trying hard to be the Man, that my Dog believes I am!

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Bass_Man86 View Post
                You clearly have not served in uniform in any capacity Doc, and please do not blow your smoke up my ass. The AF Academy is dead wrong on this one and so are you. You can go to the church/temple/mosque whatever of your choice, but the AF Academy (as a military organization) cannot be seen to endorse any flavor of religion. Even a flavor that you may find palatable.
                You clearly have no grasp of the subject matter or even basic logic.

                Allowing cadets to openly pray is not an endorsement of a religion. There is no logical way in which the "free exercise clause" can violate the "establishment clause."

                Unless the prayer circle somehow disrupts military discipline, there is nothing wrong with it.
                Last edited by The Doctor; 07 Dec 15, 09:07.
                Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Bass_Man86 View Post




                  http://www.military.com/daily-news/2...estigated.html

                  The AF football players do not have a right to do this in the stadium and in team jerseys any more than they would have the right to participate at a political event thus attired. By doing that at an official function, which is what an academy football game is, they are giving the impression that the Air Force as a whole is endorsing their brand of religion, thus violating the separation of church and state.

                  Jefferson wrote, "I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State."

                  The Air Force, by tacitly condoning this behavior, is eroding that separation because this is in effect endorsing the cadets’ brand of Christianity. As a lifelong Catholic I frankly resent this and I can only imagine how someone that is not even Christian might feel about this highly inappropriate behavior. If the cadets want to do that, they should do in civvies at a church of their choice.
                  Regardless of the technicality I know this much,

                  For years football players have been praising Jesus Christ after scoring a touchdown.. there is nothing wrong with this type of approach. I dont see why now all of a sudden football players should not be allowed to pray before a game or praise God during a game for scoring a touchdown.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    This probably did violate the establishment clause....

                    A decade ago, the academy came under fire over a banner hanging in the team’s locker room that read "I am a Christian first and last … I am a member of Team Jesus Christ."
                    Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Taieb el-Okbi View Post
                      Regardless of the technicality I know this much,

                      For years football players have been praising Jesus Christ after scoring a touchdown.. there is nothing wrong with this type of approach. I dont see why now all of a sudden football players should not be allowed to pray before a game or praise God during a game for scoring a touchdown.
                      Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Bass_Man86 View Post
                        You clearly have not served in uniform in any capacity Doc, and please do not blow your smoke up my ass. The AF Academy is dead wrong on this one and so are you. You can go to the church/temple/mosque whatever of your choice, but the AF Academy (as a military organization) cannot be seen to endorse any flavor of religion. Even a flavor that you may find palatable.
                        You clearly spent too much time in the boiler room or chipping rust......

                        Let's start with Navy Regulations:

                        The history of the Chaplain Corps traces its beginnings to 28 November 1775 when the second article of Navy Regulations was adopted. It stated that "the Commanders of the ships of the thirteen United Colonies are to take care that divine services be performed twice a day on board and a sermon preached on Sundays, unless bad weather or other extraordinary accidents prevent." Although chaplains were not specifically mentioned in this article, one can imply that Congress intended that an ordained clergyman be part of ship's company.

                        Here's a good video for you Chief:

                        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bO1y3hfydx8#t=19
                        "I don't discuss sitting presidents," Mattis tells NPR in an interview. "I believe that you owe a period of quiet."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Setting aside the nonsensical assertion that the prayer circle violates the establishment clause...

                          If 57 out of 60 Falcon football players forming a prayer circle is unconstitutional, how is this OK?
                          Neo-Pagans Get Worship Circle at Air Force Academy

                          By Joseph Abrams Published February 02, 2010 FoxNews.com

                          Witches, Druids and pagans rejoice! The Air Force Academy in Colorado is about to recognize its first Wiccan prayer circle, a Stonehenge on the Rockies that will serve as an outdoor place of worship for the academy's neo-pagans.

                          Wiccan cadets and officers on the Colorado Springs base have been convening for over a decade, but the school will officially dedicate a newly built circle of stones on about March 10, putting the outdoor sanctuary on an equal footing with the Protestant, Catholic, Jewish and Buddhist chapels on the base.

                          "When I first arrived here, Earth-centered cadets didn't have anywhere to call home," said Sgt. Robert Longcrier, the lay leader of the neo-pagan groups on base.

                          "Now, they meet every Monday night, they get to go on retreats, and they have a stone circle."

                          [...]

                          http://www.foxnews.com/us/2010/02/02...force-academy/
                          Watts Up With That? | The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by The Doctor View Post
                            You clearly have no grasp of the subject matter or even basic logic.

                            Allowing cadets to openly pray is not an endorsement of a religion. There is no logical way in which the "free exercise clause" can violate the "establishment clause."

                            Unless the prayer circle somehow disrupts military discipline, there is nothing wrong with it.
                            It is you that have no grasp of the subject matter Doc; again you are absolutely wrong.

                            The overriding principle of the Establishment Clause is government neutrality toward religion: government must take no action that either favors one religion over another or favors religion generally over nonreligion.25 The seminal Supreme Court case interpreting the Establishment Clause is Lemon v. Kurtzman,26 in which the Court articulated three requirements that the challenged governmental action must meet in order to satisfy the Establishment Clause. First, the governmental action at issue must have a nonreligious purpose. Second, the primary effect of the governmental action cannot advance (or inhibit) religion. Third, the governmental action cannot result in excessive government entanglement with religion.27 In the religious speech context, the “effect” and (to a lesser extent) “purpose” prongs are the most important.

                            In deciding whether governmental action (especially prayer) violates Lemon’s “effect” prong, courts sometimes look to whether the government is coercing people “to support or participate in religion or its exercise.”28 For example, an appellate court struck down Virginia Military Institute’s evening meal prayer due to its coercive nature in the military context.29 Military leaders must be extremely cautious that they do not use their rank and position to coerce subordinates.

                            Short of coercion, religious speech can also violate Lemon’s “effect” prong if it appears to the reasonable and informed observer that the government is endorsing religion by “conveying or attempting to convey a message that religion or a particular religious belief is favored or preferred.”30 Religious speech by a military leader can thus violate the Establishment Clause when it reasonably appears that the leader, acting in an official capacity for the military, is promoting religion. A similar but broader prohibition appears in the Joint Ethics Regulation, which prohibits governmental personnel from using their position, title, or authority in a way that reasonably could imply that the government endorses the employee’s personal activities.31
                            This public display indeed gives the impression that the government, in this case the AF Academy, is endorsing religion by “conveying or attempting to convey a message that religion or a particular religious belief is favored or preferred.”

                            http://strategicstudiesinstitute.arm...mn/Fitzkee.pdf
                            Give me a fast ship and the wind at my back for I intend to sail in harms way! (John Paul Jones)

                            Initiated Chief Petty Officer
                            Hard core! Old School! Deal with it!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I only counted about five players kneeling down for prayer. Where is the rest of the 50 + members? Not really a good sign for unit cohesion which is a prime goal of the military.
                              "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                              Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                              you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

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