Shocker: Christians Avoiding Military Due To ‘Hostile Work Environment’

As in other institutions, including education, the U.S. military has attracted scrutiny in recent years for attempting to silence or relegate servicemen and women who openly profess their Christian faith. As a result, some advocacy groups are now reporting an exodus of sorts within the armed forces as Christians find life in uniform increasingly inhospitable.

The Liberty Institute’s Michael Berry, for example, predicted recruiters will have a hard time selling the benefits of enlisting to individuals who believe their values will be trashed by commanding officers.

“People of faith are going to stay away from the military,” he speculated, recalling conversations he has had in the past with Christian families upset over the recent trend.

“I can’t tell you how many moms and dads I’ve spoken to who say, ‘My son or daughter wants to join the military, [but] in light of what you’ve described, I’m not sure I want to let them join the military anymore,’” he explained, “and I don’t blame them. I would have serious reservations about my own kids joining.”

He described life within today’s military a “hostile work environment” for Christians.

Just weeks after Navy Chaplain Wes Modder was issued a written complaint and threatened with further punishment for expressing his Bible-based view of marriage, Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty President Douglas Lee echoed Berry’s concerns.

“I know people who get out,” he said, “officers and chaplains who’ve said, ‘I can’t serve the way I want to in this environment. People who’ve said, ‘Because of the religious liberty challenges I see, I think I’ll serve somewhere else.’”

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This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Equipping You With The Truth

Outraged Ted Cruz Vowed An Unrelenting Fight, And Now The Army Has Just Done A BIG About-Face

A week ago, Western Journalism told you about the outrage expressed by Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas when the U.S. Army refused to provide expected benefits to Purple Heart recipients who were victims of the terror attack by a Muslim militant at Fort Hood. After leading a protracted battle with the Pentagon to get the military to award three-dozen Purple Heart medals to wounded survivors and relatives of those killed in the 2009 shooting rampage, Cruz said on Fox and Friends:

“It is outrageous and it’s indefensible,” [Cruz] said. “One of the reasons we fought so hard to pass the legislation to require the Purple Hearts to be awarded is precisely so that these soldiers get the benefits they deserve.

It shouldn’t have taken five years; this should have happened five years ago.”

Now, as Reuters reports, the Army has done a big about-face and agreed to provide additional benefits to the Purple Heart recipients.

“Army Secretary John McHugh said on Thursday he has ordered benefits including payment of hostile-fire pay for Purple Heart recipients “killed, injured or wounded” in the attack, and combat-related special compensation for retired soldiers disabled in the attack.”

The Los Angeles Times says the just-announced move will mean “full medical and financial benefits” for the Ft. Hood shooting victims.

In a highly controversial decision, the Army had initially designated the Fort Hood shooting rampage as “workplace violence.” It took years for the service to declare it an act of terrorism.

Army psychiatrist Nidal Hassan, an American-born Muslim, killed 13 people and wounded 32 others in what he later described as retaliation for the U.S.-led wars in Muslim countries. Hasan, who last year said he wanted to become a citizen of the Islamic State, was convicted of murder in 2013 and sentenced to death.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Equipping You With The Truth

No Matter Who Wins The White House, The New Boss Will Be The Same As The Old Boss

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“What the government is good at is collecting taxes, taking away your freedoms, and killing people. It’s not good at much else.”—Author Tom Clancy

The American people remain eager to be persuaded that a new president in the White House can solve the problems that plague us. Yet no matter who wins this next presidential election, you can rest assured that the new boss will be the same as the old boss; and we—the permanent underclass in America—will continue to be forced to march in lockstep with the police state in all matters, public and private.

Indeed, as I point out in my new book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, it really doesn’t matter what you call them—the 1%, the elite, the controllers, the masterminds, the shadow government, the police state, the surveillance state, the military industrial complex—so long as you understand that no matter which party occupies the White House in 2017, the unelected bureaucracy that actually calls the shots will continue to do so.

Consider the following a much-needed reality check, an antidote if you will, against an overdose of overhyped campaign announcements, lofty electoral promises and meaningless patriotic sentiments that land us right back in the same prison cell.

FACT: For the first time in history, Congress is dominated by a majority of millionaires who are, on average, fourteen times wealthier than the average American. According to a scientific study by Princeton researchers, the United States of America is not the democracy that it purports to be, but rather an oligarchy, in which “economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy.”

FACT: “Today, 17,000 local police forces are equipped with such military equipment as Blackhawk helicopters, machine guns, grenade launchers, battering rams, explosives, chemical sprays, body armor, night vision, rappelling gear and armored vehicles,” reports Paul Craig Roberts, former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury. “Some have tanks.”

FACT: Thanks to an overabundance of 4,500-plus federal crimes and 400,000-plus rules and regulations, it is estimated that the average American actually commits three felonies a day without knowing it. In fact, according to law professor John Baker, “There is no one in the United States over the age of 18 who cannot be indicted for some federal crime. That is not an exaggeration.”

FACT: The number of violent crimes in the country is down substantially, the lowest rate in forty years, while the number of Americans being jailed for nonviolent crimes such as driving with a suspended license is skyrocketing.

FACT: Despite the fact that women only make up 8 percent of the prison population, they are more likely to be strip searched, though not more likely to carry contraband.

FACT: Despite the fact that we have 46 million Americans living at or below the poverty line, 16 million children living in households without adequate access to food, and at least 900,000 veterans relying on food stamps, enormous sums continue to be doled out for presidential vacations ($16 million for trips to Africa and Hawaii), overtime fraud at the Department of Homeland Security (nearly $9 million in improper overtime claims, and that’s just in six of the DHS’ many offices), and Hollywood movie productions ($10 million was spent by the Army National Guard on Superman movie tie-ins aimed at increasing awareness about the National Guard).

FACT: Since 2001, Americans have spent $10.5 million every hour for numerous foreign military occupations, including in Iraq and Afghanistan. There’s also the $2.2 million spent every hour on maintaining the United States’ nuclear stockpile, and the $35,000 spent every hour to produce and maintain our collection of Tomahawk missiles. And then there’s the money the government exports to other countries to support their arsenals, at the cost of $1.61 million every hour for the American taxpayers.

FACT: It is estimated that 2.7 million children in the United States have at least one parent in prison, whether it be a local jail or a state or federal penitentiary, due to a wide range of factors ranging from overcriminalization and surprise raids at family homes to roadside traffic stops.

FACT: At least 400 to 500 innocent people are killed by police officers every year. Indeed, Americans are now eight times more likely to die in a police confrontation than they are to be killed by a terrorist. Americans are 110 times more likely to die of foodborne illness than in a terrorist attack.

FACT: Police officers are more likely to be struck by lightning than be made financially liable for their wrongdoing.

FACT: On an average day in America, over 100 Americans have their homes raided by SWAT teams.There has been a notable buildup in recent years of SWAT teams within non-security-related federal agencies such as the Department of Agriculture, the Railroad Retirement Board, the Tennessee Valley Authority, the Office of Personnel Management, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Education Department.

FACT: The FBI’s Next Generation Identification (NGI) facial recognition system, which is set to hold data on millions of Americans, will include a variety of biometric data, including palm prints, iris scans, and face recognition data. The FBI hopes to have 52 million images by 2015. NGI will be capable of uploading 55,000 images a day, and conducting tens of thousands of photo searches a day.

FACT: Comprising an $82 billion industry, at least 30,000 drones are expected to occupy U.S. airspace by 2020.

FACT: Devices are now being developed that would allow police to stop a car remotely, ostensibly to end police chases.

FACT: Everything we do will eventually be connected to the Internet. By 2030, it is estimated there will be 100 trillion sensor devices connecting human electronic devices (cell phones, laptops, etc.) to the Internet. Much, if not all, of our electronic devices will be connected to Google, which openly works with government intelligence agencies.

FACT: In 2015, mega-food corporations will begin rolling out high-tech shelving outfitted with cameras in order to track the shopping behavior of customers, as well as information like the age and sex of shoppers.

FACT: If knowledge is power, it’s no wonder Americans are in hot water. According to a study by the National Constitution Center, 41 percent of Americans “are not aware that there are three branches of government, and 62 percent couldn’t name them; 33 percent couldn’t even name one.”

FACT: The United States is one of the highest TV viewing nations. According to a Nielsen report, the average American over the age of two “spends more than thirty-four hours a week watching live television . . . plus another three to six hours watching taped programs.”

FACT: Only six out of every one hundred Americans know that they actually have a constitutional right to hold the government accountable for wrongdoing, as guaranteed by the right to petition clause of the First Amendment.

FACT: According to a Gallup poll, Americans place greater faith in the military and the police than in any of the three branches of government. However, when asked to name the greatest problem facing the nation, Americans of all political stripes ranked the government as the number one concern. In fact, almost eight out of ten Americans believe that government corruption is widespread.

Perhaps the most troubling fact of all is this: we have handed over control of our government and our lives to faceless bureaucrats who view us as little more than cattle to be bred, branded, butchered, and sold for profit.

If there is to be any hope of restoring our freedoms and reclaiming control over our government, it will rest not with the politicians but with the people themselves. When all is said and done, each American will have to decide for themselves whether they prefer dangerous freedom to peaceful slavery.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Who Really Profits From The West’s Warmongering?

aradaphotography / Shutterstock.com  aradaphotography / Shutterstock.com

Militarism and military spending are everywhere and on the rise, as the new Cold War propaganda seems to be paying off. The new “threats” that are being hyped bring big profits to military contractors and the network of think tanks they pay to produce pro-war propaganda.

Here are just a few examples:

The German government announced last week that it would purchase 100 more “Leopard” tanks — a 45 percent increase in the country’s inventory. Germany had greatly reduced its inventory of tanks, as the end of the Cold War meant the end of any threat of a Soviet ground invasion of Europe. The German government now claims that these 100 new tanks, which may cost nearly half a billion dollars, are necessary to respond to the new Russian ‘assertiveness’ in the region. Never mind that Russia has neither invaded nor threatened any country in the region, much less a NATO member country.

The U.S. Cold War-era nuclear bunker under Cheyenne Mountain, Colorado, which was all but shut down in the 25 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall, is being brought back to life. The Pentagon has committed nearly a billion dollars to upgrading the facility to its previous Cold War-level of operations. U.S. defense contractor Raytheon will be the prime beneficiary of this contract. Raytheon is a major financial sponsor of think tanks like the Institute for the Study of War, which continuously churn out pro-war propaganda. I am sure these big contracts are a good return on that investment.

NATO, which I believe should have been shut down after the Cold War ended, is also getting its own massively expensive upgrade. The Alliance commissioned a new headquarters building in Brussels, Belgium, in 2010, which is supposed to be completed in 2016. The building looks like a hideous claw, and the final cost — if it is ever finished — will be well over $1 billion. That is more than twice what was originally budgeted. What a boondoggle! Is it any surprise that NATO bureaucrats and generals continuously try to terrify us with tales of the new Russian threat? They need to justify their expansion plans!

So who is the real enemy? The Russians?

No, the real enemy is the taxpayer. The real enemy is the middle class and the productive sectors of the economy. We are the victims of this new runaway military spending. Every dollar or euro spent on a contrived threat is a dollar or euro taken out of the real economy and wasted on military Keynesianism. It is a dollar stolen from a small business owner that will not be invested in innovation, spent on research to combat disease, or even donated to charities that help the needy.

One of the most pervasive and dangerous myths of our time is that military spending benefits an economy. This could not be further from the truth. Such spending benefits a thin layer of well-connected and well-paid elites. It diverts scarce resources from meeting the needs and desires of a population and channels them into manufacturing tools of destruction. The costs may be hidden by the money-printing of the central banks, but they are eventually realized in the steady destruction of a currency.

The elites are terrified that peace may finally break out, which will be bad for their profits. That is why they are trying to scuttle the Iran deal, nix the Cuba thaw, and drum up a new “Red Scare” coming from Moscow. We must not be fooled into believing their lies.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

OUTRAGE: You Won’t Believe What Leftists Teach Our Armed Forces About Causes Of ‘Sexism’

Images Credit: Wiki Commons/The Daily Caller

When you learn what the Defense Department has been drilling into our fighting forces about the ills of American society and culture, you might well wonder which country our brave men and women in uniform are fighting for.

Just last week, Western Journalism told you about and Army training session on diversity where some 400 soldiers were lectured about the harm that “white privilege” does to race relations.

After loud complaints over parts of the program that included such material as “race privilege gives whites little reason to pay a lot of attention to African Americans or to how white privilege affects them,” the Army said inclusion of that subject matter was a “mistake.” The brass called it an unauthorized addition to the Equal Opportunity briefing at Fort Gordon, Ga.

But now The Daily Caller has found even more evidence that the Defense Department is trying to influence the armed forces in ways that many would consider outrageous, if not borderline treasonous.

According to a presentation prepared by a group called the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI), reveals The Daily Caller investigation, an approved course on sexism points the finger of blame directly at three “cherished texts” — the Bible, the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

Image Credit: The Daily Caller/DEOMI

Image Credit: The Daily Caller/DEOMI

According to the course, the Bible has “quotes” which can be interpreted as sexist by readers.

The Declaration of Independence is also an historical cause of sexism, as the document refers only to ”all men” — not “men and women.”

And the Constitution, the Pentagon argues, is an historical source of sexism because “slaves and women were not included until later in history.”

Apparently, once the nature of the sexism course was brought to light, the Defense Department decided it would be a good idea to remove the controversial materials from public view, at least temporarily.

“But following TheDC’s request for comment, the sexism course — as well as two other courses listed on DEOMI’s website, entitled ‘Prejudice & Discrimination’ and ‘Racism’ — were taken offline.

“’This course is currently offline and under revision,’ a notice says under all three courses.”

On its website, the institute responsible for developing and teaching courses such as the one on sexism, racism and prejudice describes its mission: “To enhance mission readiness from development through delivery of world-class human relations education, training, and innovate solutions for our customers.”

Among the organization’s “2015 Special Observance Themes” that it promotes — in addition to “Black History Month,” “Women’s History Month,” Holocaust Remembrance Day,” and the like — is “LGBT Pride Month,” celebrated throughout June by presidential proclamation.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom