Last week I reported on the toughest 44 Jews in the world, referring to the 44 Jews who were opressing nearly 3800 airmen at the Air Force Academy. Of course, they were doing nothing of the sort, but rather were themselves the subject of abuse from proselytizing evangelicals who attend, teach, and run the Academy. The report listed up to 55 complaints, and if Barry Lynn’s Americans United (a group I generally treat with great skepticism) is correct, the situation is worse than I even imagined:
Religious intolerance is systemic and pervasive at the U.S. Air Force Academy and, if nothing changes, it could result in “prolonged and costly” litigation, according to a report issued Thursday by a group advocating strict separation of church and state.
The 14-page report listed incidents of mandatory prayers, proselytizing by teachers, insensitivity to religious minorities and allegations that evangelical Christianity is the preferred faith at the institution.
“I think this is the most serious, military-related systemic problem I have ever seen in the decades I’ve been doing this work,” said Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. “There is a clear preference for Christianity at the academy, so that everyone else feels like a second-class citizen.”
The actual report can be found here (.pdf), and some of the abuses listed include the following:
1.) We have been informed, for example, that, during a Basic Cadet Training session attended by a team of observers from the Yale Divinity School, one of the Academy chaplains