Rear Admiral Lee (now Vice Admiral) Addresses Restrictive Regulations on Religious Liberty
Urge Pentagon to scrub plan to court-martial Christians. Sign the Petition!
This was published originally on May 7th, 2013, and is as important to hear today, even more so…
Family Research Council believes that religious liberty is more than the right to attend a private worship service. Religious observance has a distinctly positive effect on community and national life. The fostering of religious liberty is a hallmark of our culture as intended by our Founding Fathers and practiced by tens of millions of Americans.
May 7th, 2013 – Over the last several days we’ve watched the Pentagon double timing in their efforts to get ahead of the fallout from the April 23rd meeting between anti-Christian activist Mikey Weinstein and senior Air Force officials. In the meeting, discussion surrounded a forthcoming Air Force policy on religious expression that Lt. Gen. Richard C. Harding said “will be a panacea to all religious issues.” Many in the Christian community have sought to make sense of the Pentagon’s confusing statements this past week — particularly the most troubling line: that “religious proselytization is not permitted within the Department of Defense.” Coercion has always been prohibited. But another Air Force statement said “members are free to express their personal beliefs as long as it does not make others uncomfortable.” Uncomfortable is obviously subjective. The Pentagon later claimed that evangelism is not included in their definition of proselytization.
However, a well-respected Rear Admiral as well as an avalanche of recent attacks on religious liberty in the uniformed services completely contradict the official line put out by the Pentagon. Yesterday, video was released of the speech given by Coast Guard Rear Admiral William Lee at the National Day of Prayer service on Capitol Hill. The Admiral boldly declared that he had disregarded the rules and gave a Bible to a service member who had attempted suicide. He went further and pledged not to abide by the restrictive regulations. To a standing ovation, Admiral Lee promised not to back down from “my right under the Constitution to tell a young man that there is hope.”
After listening to his speech and reading the steady stream of reports about suppression of religious expression, I don’t see how one can dismiss these concerns as rising from some kind of conspiracy theory being pushed by Christian groups. In reality, the concerns stated by Christians in the military are the result of an environment of increasing religious hostility that has been created by restrictive regulations at the behest of activists like Mikey Weinstein. Several weeks ago, Defense Secretary Hagel was grilled about them in a Congressional hearing — but said he knew nothing about it. A conspiracy? No. An environment created by Mikey Weinstein’s influence over military regulations and compliant leaders? Yes.
Urge Pentagon to scrub plan to court-martial Christians.
Sign the Petition! Go to: http://bit.ly/12e5B6u
Video courtesy of GOD TV & the National Day of Prayer
Vice Admiral William “Dean” Lee assumed the duties as Commander,Coast Guard Atlantic Area (NTAREA) in May of 2014, where he serves as the operational commander for all U.S. Coast Guard missions from the Rocky Mountains to the Arabian Gulf, spanning across five Coast Guard Districts and 40 states.
In addition to his duties at Atlantic Area, he serves as Commander, Defense Force East and provides Coast Guard mission support to the Department of Defense and Combatant Commanders. He concurrently serves as Director, DHS Joint Task Force East, responsible for achieving the objectives of the DHS Southern Border and Approaches Campaign Plan throughout his Joint Operating Area.
Before assuming command of LANTAREA, Vice Admiral Lee served as the Deputy for Operations Policy and Capabilities, following his assignment as the Fifth District Commander in Portsmouth, Va. He is on his seventh command assignment and has spent 34 years serving at various units on the Atlantic, Pacific, and Gulf coasts.
Vice Admiral Lee is a native of Richmond, Virginia and a 1981 graduate of Officer Candidate School. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of South Alabama and a Master of Arts from George Washington University. Vice Admiral Lee’s awards include five Legions of Merit, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, two Meritorious Service Medals, three Coast Guard Commendation Medals, two Coast Guard Achievement Medals and various other personal and unit awards.