The Trump Effect Made Christian Extremists in U.S. Army A National Threat!
According to the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF), Donald Trump’s election has led to such a steep rise in fundamentalist Christian evangelizing and bigotry in U.S. Military that the matter is reaching the level of a “national security threat.” Those are information shared exclusively with Newsweek by an organization that represents and advocates for secular and minority religious views in the military.
A lawyer Michael “Mikey” Weinstein is a former Air Force officer who founded the organization Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) and he claims that the number of complaints in the U.S. armed forces has doubled since November 2016. Bigger problem than the number of complaints is the fact that they are mostly coming from members of minority religions, including Roman Catholics, Jews and Muslims, and from atheists.
Bigotry has reached a critical level in U.S. Military since Trump’s election. His rhetoric during the campaign and after the elections gave Christian fundamentalists enthusiasm to express their hatred towards minorities more openly. This is what is called Trump Effect. For instance, Newsweek reported that noncommissioned officers at one Air Force base reported that their superiors told them Trump would make it USAF policy that in order for “disbelieving Jews” to be allowed into the USAF or deemed fit for promotions, they would have to show via objectively established behavior that they were at least honestly “considering the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.” In the other case, the wife of a combat-decorated Muslim U.S. Naval officer, who was wearing a Muslim headscarf, was surrounded in the commissary and spit upon and cursed as not being a “true American and being a spy and a terrorist.” She was with her children at the time.
Those people complained to MRFF and the MRFF lodged formal complaints with the service branches, and the incidents were addressed, according to Weinstein. The targets have turned to the MRFF because they feared retaliation if they went through their chain of command.
The Trump Effect can’t surprise anyone because, as a presidential candidate, Trump promised “to end political correctness and put Christianity back into the military.” He said in 2016: “We’re gonna get away from political correctness. We have a politically correct military and is getting more and more politically correct every day and a lot of the great people in this room don’t even understand how it’s possible to do that. And that’s through intelligence, not through ignorance, believe me, some of the things they’re asking you to do and be politically correct about are ridiculous.”
Fundamentalist views are decidedly in the minority in the general population, but they have adherents in some of the U.S. military’s most powerful positions, especially in and around Washington, D.C., and in Colorado Springs, home of the U.S. Air Force Academy and the nation’s nuclear command center, according to the Newsweek report.