The commander of F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming has agreed to replace a Bible on a POW/MIA table with a generic “book of faith,” the Military Religious Freedom Foundation revealed this week. The MRFF is a militant organization that has fought against Nativity scenes, Bible studies and any outward expressions of the Christian faith on U.S. military installations.
The head of the foundation, Mikey Weinstein, wrote in the HuffPost that he is dedicated to fighting “virulent religious oppression” carried out by “incredibly well-funded gangs of fundamentalist Christian monsters who terrorize their fellow Americans by forcing their weaponized and twisted version of Christianity upon their helpless subordinates in our nation’s armed forces.”
The MRFF alleges that as many as 36 unnamed clients at the Air Force base in Wyoming have complained about the inclusion of the Bible on the table honoring prisoners of war and missing comrades.
“Our MRFF clients under Col. (Stacy) Huser’s command remain resolute in their most fervent objection to this blatant display of fundamentalist Christian supremacy, domination and exceptionalism,” Weinstein wrote in a letter to the military.
The Air Force base decided to temporarily rotate the Bible with books from other faiths until it could be permanently replaced with a “book of faith,” the MRFF said on its website Tuesday.
Col. Huser confirmed the MRFF account. She said in a statement Thursday: "One of our focus areas … is increasing the sense of belonging for all our Airmen; a large part of that effort is ensuring the religious and non-religious feel included and cared for. This concern being brought to our attention only helps us work toward meeting the needs of all Airmen. The 90th Missile Wing is scheduled to replace the Bible on the POW/MIA table with a ‘book of faith’ containing spiritual writings and prayers from the five DoD (Department of Defense) Chaplain appointed faith groups and a sixth set of blank pages to represent those who find solace by other means.”
The ceremonial remembrance table is a tradition that was started after the Vietnam War, according to the Naval History and Heritage Command Communication and Outreach Division.
The table traditionally includes a Holy Bible to represent “faith in a higher power and the pledge to our country, founded as one nation under God.”
Weinstein’s crusade to eradicate Bibles from POW/MIA tables is gaining traction. Department of Veterans Affairs hospitals from Ohio to Texas to New York have complied with his demands.
Weinstein claims that many of the complainants objecting to the Bibles on the POW/MIA tables are Christians, but I find that very hard to believe. I don’t know of a single follower of Jesus Christ who is offended by the presence of a Bible.
I find it heartbreaking and deeply offensive that Weinstein and his minions would declare war on a sacred military tradition. And if the Military Religious Freedom Foundation refuses to stand down, we must stand up and urge the Trump administration to defend the POW/MIA tables.