The Air Force Academy * Year of the Dog begins for the Chinese*
In Round II, evangelical Christians won back most of the ground they had lost in 2005 after complaints were voiced about overt promotion of Christian faith at the Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, CO. "Air Force eases rules on religion" is the caption of a report in today's Washington Post
. "The guidelines were first issued in late August after allegations that evangelical Christian commanders, coaches and cadets at the Air Force Academy had pressured cadets of other faiths. The original wording sought to tamp down religious fervor and to foster tolerance throughout the Air Force. It discouraged public prayers at routine events and warned superior officers that personal expressions of faith could be misunderstood as official statements."
- Americans United for Separation of Church and State, a Washington-based group whose investigation of the Air Force Academy helped spark the controversy last year, said the revisions "focus heavily on protecting the rights of chaplains, while ignoring the rights of nonbelievers and minority faiths."
- Michael L. "Mikey" Weinstein, an Albuquerque lawyer who is suing the Air Force over its policy on religion, questioned the sentence allowing commanders to share their faith when it is "reasonably clear" that they are speaking personally, not officially.
- "Reasonably clear from whose perspective, the superior's or the subordinate's?" asked Weinstein, a 1977 Air Force Academy graduate. "When a senior member of your chain of command wants to speak to you 'reasonably' about religion, saying 'Get out of my face, sir!' is not an option."
Read about snow storm in Washington,DC. For us in the San Francisco Bay area, it is somewhat foggy. Temp. in the low 50's F (11°C). The fog will clear by noon and the sun will be out. The forecast is for more of the same the next few days. Good for outdoor activities--pottering in the yard, walks, runs. Many of us will do just that. Last evening the annual parade to mark the beginning of the Chinese New Year (Year of the Dog) took place in San Francisco. It was a great success in terms of the pagentry and participation. To my Chinese friends: Gung Hay Fat Choy.*****