After flying within the B-2 bomber, Air Force Col. Leland Bohannon is aware of a factor or two about stealth. And the assault towards his religion isn’t it. In reality, the navy appears to be going out of its option to punish the Christian dad of 5, regardless of a distinguished profession defending the identical freedom the Air Force is intent on taking from him.
Like a number of service members, Bohannon was relieved when President Donald Trump signed the chief order defending non secular freedom. But that very same May, he came upon the onerous means that not everybody within the navy had gotten the memo. Instead of encouraging religion, Air Force officers have been persevering with the Obama coverage of punishing it.
The controversy began when somebody approached Bohannon about signing a “certificates of partner appreciation” for an airman in a same-sex marriage. A faithful Christian, Bohannon couldn’t, in good conscience, have a good time a relationship that violated biblical fact. After speaking with the command chaplain and a employees choose advocate, he requested for a spiritual lodging.
Six weeks handed. The Air Force responded to his request by doing nothing. The lodging letter was returned with out a solution, leaving Bohannon utterly defenseless in what had develop into a serious flare-up along with his superiors.
After the airman complained to the Equal Opportunity Office, investigators took on the case, finally accusing Bohannon of “illegal discrimination on the premise of his sexual orientation.” To most individuals’s shock, officers didn’t care if Bohannon had gotten an exception. Even if the “lodging been granted,” they wrote, “Colonel Bohannon would nonetheless be responsible of illegal discrimination.”
The colonel was surprised. Not as surprised as he could be within the coming weeks, when he was suspended, given a poor efficiency appraisal, and nearly assured that he would by no means be promoted once more. For Bohannon, who’s a embellished fight officer, the information was devastating.
“His profession is probably going over,” First Liberty Institute’s Michael Berry instructed Fox News’ Todd Starnes, “and he’ll probably should retire as a colonel as an alternative of a basic.”
Berry, who’s representing Bohannon within the case, might solely shake his head. “This sends a transparent message—when you wouldn’t have the politically right viewpoint, you aren’t welcome within the navy. The navy is not a spot of range and inclusion in case you are an individual who holds to a conventional perception on marriage.”
Unfortunately for folks like Bohannon, non secular hostility within the navy didn’t disappear when President Barack Obama did. There are nonetheless loads of bureaucrats and political appointees decided to hold on the illiberal legacy of the final eight years. That will probably be more durable to do now, below a commander in chief like Trump. But, even with a brand new president, it takes time to determine and uproot the issue areas in a division of just about 3 million folks.
The govt order is definitely an enormous step, particularly for the reason that Department of Justice’s steering included the Department of Defense. But thus far, the Defense Department hasn’t issued a particular follow-up steering like we noticed with the Department of Agriculture final week.
The Family Research Council is encouraging the Air Force—and the remainder of the navy—to do precisely that so that individuals like Bohannon aren’t pressured to examine their religion on the base’s gates. After all, because the Family Research Council’s Travis Weber factors out:
[The DOJ’s religious freedom] memorandum depends on present regulation—the First Amendment, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), and Department of Defense Instruction (DODI) 1300.17—which all defend non secular freedom within the navy, and thus defend Col Bohannon. Indeed, DODI 1300.17 requires an lodging to be granted except a navy curiosity overrides it. All of those authorities clearly require the federal government to guard Col Bohannon’s non secular freedom by not forcing him to personally signal the certificates.
What higher option to have a good time Veterans Day than correcting this improper to service members’ rights? With our mates at First Liberty Institute, we name on the navy to make it clear by way of their very own steering that service members are free to train the identical liberties they’re preventing for. Join 17,000 others who’ve signed our petition to Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson on behalf of Bohannon—and each Christian courageous sufficient to put on the uniform.
Then, take a look at Family Research Council’s Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin as he shares his distinctive perspective on Veterans Day on this CBN interview.
This was initially printed in Tony Perkins’ Washington Update, which is written with assistance from Family Research Council senior writers.
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