06 Sep 2006

Vengeful Secularist Wages War on the US Military

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Michael L. (“Mikey”) Weinstein comes from a military family. His father was an Annapolis graduate. He attended the Air Force Academy himself, and worked in the Reagan White House, in David Stockman’s Office of Management and Budget. But Weinstein became a secularist gadfly, spending hundreds of thousands of dollars of his own money, and growing his one man single-issue capaign into an organization combatting Christianity in the US military. Weinstein’s vendetta began in 2004, when his two sons who were then attending the Air Force Academy allegedly experienced anti-Jewish slurs and were subjected to proselytizing by Evangelical Christians. CNN

Weinstein’s latest demand is for the elimination of a unit’s nickname.

An Air Force Academy graduate from Albuquerque wants Cannon Air Force Base officials to end the 523rd Fighter Squadron’s use of “Crusaders” as the unit’s nickname.

Mikey Weinstein, who has sued the Air Force over allegations that Air Force Academy cadets were unconstitutionally subjected to Christian evangelization, has complained about the 523rd’s unit emblem, which features a cross, a sword and an armored helmet.

“The airmen of 523rd Fighter Squadron … not only have invoked the term ‘Crusaders’ to describe their unit, they use blatantly sectarian religious symbolism on the patches they affix to their uniforms and the official logo of their unit,” Weinstein wrote in an article for the Sept. 4 issues of the Air Force Times, Army Times and Navy Times.

Weinstein, president and founder of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, said the Cannon squadron’s symbols should be eliminated.

“I’m not asking them. I’m demanding they change it,” Weinstein said in a telephone interview Thursday.


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