Humanists Hold Congressional Briefing on the Need for Non-Religious Military Chaplains

Earlier today, the American Humanist Association held a congressional briefing about the need for Humanist chaplains in the military.

Speakers included Jason Torpy (President of the Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers), Stephen Boyd (retired colonel and military chaplain), and Major Ryan Jean (current military member):



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Humanist Group to Hold Congressional Briefing on the Need for Non-Religious Military Chaplains

On Tuesday, July 22, the American Humanist Association will hold a congressional briefing about the need for Humanist chaplains in the military. Speakers include Jason Torpy (President of the Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers), Stephen Boyd (retired colonel and military chaplain), and Major Ryan Jean (current military member).



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Jason Heap, Atheist Candidate to Become a Chaplain in the U.S. Navy, Gets Rejected

Jason Heap wanted to become a chaplain in the U.S. Navy and seemed perfectly qualified for the position: He earned two master’s degrees (including one in divinity), passed his physicals, and completed the paperwork… but what he doesn’t have is the endorsement of a religious organization that’s currently approved by the Navy.

That’s because Heap is a Humanist whose endorsement comes from the Humanist Society.

Last month, the Navy rejected his application. They didn’t say why, only that a lot of people were rejected, but it’s not hard to connect the dots given Heap’s impeccable credentials.

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Canadian Reserve Army Chaplain Claims There Are No Atheists in Foxholes

Donald MacGillivray (below), a reserve army chaplain in Canada, made a ridiculous comment in an opinion piece for the Cape Breton Post:

War is about life and death and because it is so, it raises questions about meaning. All people search for meaning, as it is part of what it is to be human.

That old expression: “There are no atheists in foxholes,” I think really rings true because these big life questions are pondered perhaps a bit more by those involved in war.

Of course, there are plenty of atheists in foxholes. There are organizations dedicated to atheists in foxholes. There are intelligent atheists who think very deeply about the “big life questions” precisely because they serve in the military. It’s not just ignorance on MacGillivray’s part; it’s slander.

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Under Pressure from the Christian Right, the Air Force May Rescind Its Ban on Proselytizing

Earlier this year, United States Air Force Academy Brigadier General Andy Armacost (below) addressed the entire faculty and told them in no uncertain terms that they could not proselytize while on duty.

It’s a rule that made perfect sense. Mikey Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation explained that the regulation was “an umbrella in a tsunami of Christian fundamentalist extremism.” Just imagine you’re in the Air Force and your commanding officer began to preach the Gospel. Much like if s/he were a Christian football coach, your unofficial options would be to play along and just nod your head or disagree and prepare to be reprimanded.

Why would anyone want to rescind that rule and allow officers to proselytize to their inferiors?

Because Religious Freedom, say the people who have no idea what it’s like to be in the religious minority:

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