West Point crybaby cries

| December 4, 2012 | 196 Comments

Let me preface this with an explanation. I have no religion, it’s been decades since I stepped through church doors, not because I don’t believe in God, but for different reasons entirely. I won’t discuss it because I don’t feel it’s an appropriate public discussion. So having said that, let’s look at this pencil dick moron, Blake Page, who has resigned from West Point because he thinks that his right to not have a traditional religion is being infringed upon at the US Military Academy. Of course, when he resigned, he had to explain it on Huffington Post because anyone who disagrees with the majority of the country feels a need to make a spectacle of themselves in public to prove how independent they are.

While there are certainly numerous problems with the developmental program at West Point and all service academies, the tipping point of my decision to resign was the realization that countless officers here and throughout the military are guilty of blatantly violating the oaths they swore to defend the Constitution. These men and women are criminals, complicit in light of day defiance of the Uniform Code of Military Justice through unconstitutional proselytism, discrimination against the non-religious and establishing formal policies to reward, encourage and even at times require sectarian religious participation. These transgressions are nearly always committed in the name of fundamentalist evangelical Christianity.

Two decades in the military, all of it with “No Pref” stamped on my dog tags, and I never had anyone preach to me about my lack of religion. There was a pretty young blonde girl in Hinesville, GA who tried to convert me once, but she wasn’t part of the military, and it didn’t take.

In fact, as I think back on my career, I don’t think I ever knew what the religious persuasion was of any of my leaders. I remember I had a Baptist minister as one of my squad leaders in my first platoon at Fort Hood, but he never tried to influence me or any of his subordinates.

And, oh, Page is completely wrong on the Constitution;

Many here are regularly told they do not deserve a place in the military. They are shown through policy that the Constitution guarantees their freedom of, but not from religion. Many are publically [sic] chastised for seeking out a community of likeminded [sic] people because it is such a common belief that Humanism and other non-religious philosophies are inherently immoral and worse.

The First Amendment says “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof….” I don’t see Congress making a law respecting religion, at West Point or anywhere else, so obviously, smartypants here doesn’t know what the Constitution says. That’s probably another reason that its good that he resigned from the academy.

As the President of the West Point Secular Student Alliance (SSA), a Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers (MAAF) affiliate, and first Director of Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) Affairs at West Point….

It sounds to me as if he’s a fanatic about his religion, or rather, the lack thereof, and I’m sure he’s probably done a fair amount of proselytizing himself about his personal superiority over Christians. That Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers shit gets me…like they are the only freethinkers on the planet just because they don’t want to be judged in this life by God. By the way, philosophies aren’t immoral, people are immoral.

I’m thankful that Page resigned from the Army, he wasn’t going to be a good leader, anyway, because he’s way too sensitive about his personal choices and I doubt he could keep his opinions out of the platoon CP. his single-minded adherence to all of those organizations instead of focusing on his studies and becoming a good leader would have had consequences under fire. I mean the dude can’t even read the Constitution. So the Army has dodged a bullet on this one.

Category: Military issues, Shitbags

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  1. Jonn Lilyea says:

    Joe, how are officers “guilty of blatantly violating the oaths they swore to defend the Constitution”? That’s just hyperbole with no basis in the truth or facts. You’re a fairly smart guy, Joe, so how can you even defend reposting that quote?

  2. NHSparky says:

    He can’t, but dammit, it just “sounds” good, doesn’t it?

  3. Twist says:

    I’m still waiting on links on when we forced Bibles of the Afghans, rifles with religious notations, or Generals calling us holy warriors on a crusade.

  4. NHSparky says:

    Twist–he’s going to likely show that picture of the guy with the “Pork Eating Crusader” patch on his BDU’s.

    Problem is, that guy is German.

  5. Hondo says:

    Joe: good to see our non-veteran rock-climbing hero and world-class expert on all matters military is back and spreading “words of wisdom”.

    Did you bother to consider that the young man in question (1) is hardly an unbiased observer and could be distorting the truth or lying; (2) hardly has sufficient experience on which to base his allegations; (3) is likely writing to further a personal agenda; and (4) you personally do not have sufficient expertise on which to evaluate his claims?

    Of course not. You never stop to consider such. You merely opine.

    Here, you obviously do not know what you are talking about. By your own admission, you’ve not served in the military. So you have insufficient experience to even have a clue as to whether or not this quitter is lying through his teeth, is merely mistaken, or is correct. Yet you insist in spouting your nonsense anyway.

    Some free advice: here you really might want to listen to those who actually have “been there, done that”. Like many of those commenting above, for starters.

  6. melle1228 says:

    @ Hondo,

    Funny Joe would rather believe some random guy on the internet instead all of us who have said that we have felt no pressure. The reason Joe believes said guy is it fits his narrow view of the world i.e., religious people are pushy intolerant people while atheists are noble, fighting the good fight. The problem is that people don’t fit into neat categories like that, and like you said Blake Page has a bias just like Joe.

  7. Hondo says:

    melle1228: I find it sad vice funny, actually. But I also have no sympathy for those who are willfully stupid.

  8. BK says:

    I was going to say, just wait until the Military Religious Freedom Foundation jumps all over this one, but then I see someone has already linked them. I used to think they were cool, and I’ve made peace with Mikey because he’s well-intentioned, but anything like this presents an opportunity for a spot on Maddow or a feature on Huffington Post. Just wait till you see your name mention in a piece they craft for the HuffPo with no opportunity for rejoinder on balance.

    I spent my many years of service having to ask for accommodations for kosher food (6 months of kosher cheese tortellini MREs, yay), religious observance, and having to explain that my yarmulke was authorized under AR 670-1 to every NCO I came across. The invocations at every event were non-denominational only if you were Christian. And you’d get the occasional guy who deployed ONCE on Christmas but who would tell you that they couldn’t tweak the staff duty roster a day around Passover because, you know, once he deployed on Christmas. It was a challenge reconciling Jewish faith with the service, but I would do it all over again in a heartbeat. What’s a few indignities compared to everything else?

    And amongst Jewish demographics, I’m proud to report that the observant set is statistically more likely to serve these days than our more liberal denominations, with less sniveling in spite of the fact that we require more accommodation than them.

    For crying out loud, it’s so good these days that a murderer can keep his beard. The only other dude that has a beard in the Army is Chaplain Goldstein of the NY Guard, and he didn’t have to murder anyone to get there. And he’s there, good friends with even the most Evangelical of Christian chaplains. That should say something about the state of affairs with regards to religious tolerance in the uniform.

    I don’t know anyone who hasn’t suffered an indignity in the course of their patriotic service. Sometimes, that’s of a religious nature. If someone is secure in their Vishnu/Paganism/G-dless DeGrasse Tysonness, they have nothing to fear from having to suffer through aged religious institutions. I’m glad pansies like this excise themselves from the broader service. We need team players, not people who snivel the first time they occasion moisture on their panty-liners.

  9. Joe says:

    “You’re a fairly smart guy, Joe, so how can you even defend reposting that quote?”

    For one, I had to re-post the part where Jonn calls me “fairly smart”, think I’m gonna print it out and have it framed. But to answer your question, I think the establishment clause has to be interpreted very strictly, many of the Europeans who came over here centuries ago were fleeing that toxic mix of gov’t and religion, and it has to be enforced in strictest sense possible. Go to whatever temple, church, synagogue, shrine you want, good for you, eally. But it’s a privatematter. Leave the government and military out of it, entirely out of it as if it didn’t exist. Once the camel’s nose is in the tent, and it’s way too far in the tent already, it’s a slippery slope to a theocracy. You think people like me are overly sensitive. I think many of you, as occasional church goers, underestimate the push by fanatical religionists to introduce things like draconian biblical law. Think of some of the comments made by christian fundamentalists running for office recently (all defeated, thankfully).

  10. NHSparky says:

    Fairly smart feller…no, I think Jonn had it switched around a bit.

    I’ll let you figure it out.

    And no, it doesn’t need “interpretation” because you can’t enforce that which doesn’t exist. Freedom OF religion doesn’t mean freedom FROM religion. To do that would in fact force the government to dictate a particular point of view, contrary to the words of the First Amendment. Free exercise and all that shit, dontcha know.

  11. melle1228 says:

    #109

    OMG– You are equating being stupid with being religious. I assume you are alluding to Akin,but stupidity is rife in the political class like Hank Johnson who thought Marine would flip Guam upside down.

    The problem with you Joe is that you stereotype and pigeonhole people. Get out into the world a little bit more. We have more to fear from the socialists in this country then we have to fear from those evil Christians. And for God Sake read the Constitution and some history on the founders and get off those atheist websites. The founders created STATE SPONSORED CHURCHES in their states. They didn’t want the federal government to have a religious preference but that did not mean that religion was completely out of the public venue. How can someone who thinks he is sooo logical not know how biased he is? Oye!

  12. CI says:

    @Twist – The crusade portion is likely in reference to the remarks by LTG Boykin, were he couched the ‘WoT’ as a Judeo-Christian crusade against the forces of evil…for which he was was reprimanded by the DoD IG.

  13. Hondo says:

    Joe: I personally think Jonn was simply giving you the benefit of the doubt or being polite.

    IMO he was in error.

  14. CI says:

    The reference to scripture was on ACOGs [don't remember the company...Knights Armaments maybe?]

  15. BK says:

    Joe, that’s far too broad a sentiment to be of any real intellectual merit.

    “But it’s a private matter.”

    Just like the Quakers who sought refuge in Pennsylvania and my ancestors that fled the Pale of Settlement for the New World, yes, partially they fled the toxic mix of religion and government, but they also sought principally the free exercise of their own faith.

    “But it’s a private matter.”

    Therein lies the conundrum. For me, it can’t be, because my Constitutionally-protected Free Exercise demands that I behave and act in ways that are outwardly apparent and have an effect on the nature of my government service. And since it’s “more better” established that the government can’t stand in the way of religious observance, it’s easier to adopt a syncretic approach to faith in the military. Accommodate them all! The problem enters when you have to start accommodating a negative.

    “Slippery slope to theocracy”

    I fundamentally disagree with both this “slippery slope” premise and the overestimation of the strength of religious fundamentalists. If nothing else, this last election demonstrated the absence of power of this supposed cabal of Dominionist Christians that the MRFF harps about like a retarded parrot. If you mention Akin but don’t examine closely why he was defeated, you’re not thinking all the way through your own argument. Confusing the interests of a religious group to influence the national morality is a frequent fallacy on the part of those arguing for the extreme libertarian view of religiosity, and it overlooks the integral right of those people to try and influence.

  16. Green Thumb says:

    What a whimp.

  17. CI says:

    @BK – “Confusing the interests of a religious group to influence the national morality is a frequent fallacy on the part of those arguing for the extreme libertarian view of religiosity, and it overlooks the integral right of those people to try and influence.”

    This is a good point. As a fairly extreme Libertarian, this is something on I continually have to keep myself in check.

  18. Twist says:

    Thanks CI. I had forgotten about LTG Boykin. As far as the ACOGS go, was it individual Soldiers that did it or was something the manufacturer stamped on it? I will have to look it up since I don’t remember seeing any scripture on my ACOG, and I looked at a lot of ACOGS doing the monthly 100% inventories.

  19. Hondo says:

    BK: well put. Those who proselytize may be a pain in the ass. But such behavior is indeed protected by the 1st Amendment – just as is that of an atheist to argue against God’s existence.

  20. NHSparky says:

    But that’s the whole point–atheists don’t want to argue, they just want to supress, which does go directly against the First Amendment.

    Oh, delicious irony.

  21. CI says:

    @Twist – It was Trijicon…stamped by the company.

    http://council.smallwarsjournal.com/showthread.php?t=9527

  22. Twist says:

    @114, I stand corrected. Apparantly Trijicon put them on ACOGS without the knowlege of the Army or Marines.

  23. Twist says:

    Apparantly you and I where typing at the same time.

  24. Green Thumb says:

    @BK.

    Keep in mind that the extremely delicious creation, The Whopper, is only 55 cents with the purchase of another Whopper at regular menu price Dec 6-10 at participating locations.

    Just saying..

    Yummy.

  25. NHSparky says:

    Green…you are evil, man. Just evil. There are no BK’s near work.

  26. OldSoldier54 says:

    “…I’m thankful that Page resigned from the Army, he wasn’t going to be a good leader, anyway…”

    IMO Jonn, that’s the money quote.

  27. Hondo says:

    Green Thumb: sadly, I doubt BK will be able to take advantage of that offer – at least, not in Whopper’s standard configuration. If I recall correctly such a combination is proscribed for observant members of the Jewish faith.

  28. Green Thumb says:

    That would be an interesting idea…a kosher Whopper.

    • Jonn Lilyea says:

      Still waiting for Joe to tell me how officers at West Point aren’t complying with their oaths. the only restrcitions on religion in the Constitution have to do with Congress, not with military officers.

  29. NHSparky says:

    I was a West Coast sailor, so I never made a Med Cruise, and as such, never made a port call in Haifa.

    But I hear the McD’s there have kosher Big Macs, and they sucked.

  30. BK says:

    Soy cheese and kosher beef – could be done.

  31. Twist says:

    @128, I have eaten Burger King in Israel with. With me not being Jewish I’m not sure how they do it differently. The best thing about Burger King in Israel…is they serve beer there.

  32. 2-17 Air Cav says:

    @128. I think a whopper, if washed down with a cream soda, is kosher.

  33. Hondo says:

    BK: true, but I don’t believe that’s the “standard configuration” Whopper. (smile)

    I have to admit I never quite understood any religion’s dietary constraints – including those of my own – other than perhaps the vegetarian teachings of some Buddhist sects (which actually seem to fit logically with other aspects of Buddhist dogma). But rules are rules. And the last time I checked most religions don’t let you “pick and chose” which rules you can follow and remain adherent.

  34. Hondo says:

    Wouldn’t recommend holding your breath waiting, Jonn.

  35. BK says:

    I’m surprised, usually the MRFF will send its legion of shills to eviscerate blog comment sections. They’re not all bad, don’t get me wrong, but they jump on *anything* that will get coverage.

    I didn’t always successfully keep kosher; I recall these sammiches fondly. But yeah, rules are rules. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t speculate on the cruelty of G-d vis a vis bacon. (I kid, G-d. You know we’re a’ight. Brisket makes up for it.)

  36. Ex-PH2 says:

    Whopper: no ketchup, extra pickles, extra onion. Include large Diet Coke.

    Cheese Whopper: Extra pickles, extra onion, add mustard, hold mayo, tomatoes, lettuce. Include large Diet Coke.

    Best eaten in car while crows watch and discuss how to steal your lunch from you.

  37. Choag says:

    Let’s just say a very close family member had this POS as his/her company 1SG at WP last year. Needless to say I had heard about him and his lack of leadership skills before he made the news. Now I see why…he was more concerned over his well being rather that his fellow cadets. He was relieved before the semester was over. Good ridance. Duty – Honor – Country. Nothing there about “My Feelings”

  38. Ex-PH2 says:

    @137, see, this is why I won’t let my sister move in with me. She’s a convert to Judaism and she’s more orthodox than you are, and she’ll let you know to exactly how much more, also.

    So that means if she lived here, I could not have butter or milk in the fridge, no bacon, no sausages, no ham and no barbecue pulled pork.

    Just does not work for me.

  39. BK says:

    @Ex-PH2 – oh, I hate that type. Converts and “returnees” stumble all over themselves to be more Jewish than Jewish. “I can’t use your bathroom because I’ll have to tear the toilet paper on Shabbos!” Give her some time, she’ll be parking her car around the corner on Friday nights the same as the rest of us, and pretending like she hoofed it all the way from home, or “bumping” into the light switch by accident. I taught in a conversion “class” once, and I couldn’t emphasize enough that they shouldn’t bring odious sanctimony along with them. No one listened.

    I’ve got immediate family that loves the pig. Loves lasagne. Loves them some Jesus, even. There was a time I had to shack up with them, and I tried not to make my observances their problem.

  40. Hondo says:

    BK: bravo, sir. As you’ve pointed out (and proved) one can be observant in one’s own religion while also being tolerant of those who believe differently. That’s true of all religions.

    Sadly, some seem completely unable to practice tolerance. That’s true across all religions – athiesm included.

  41. OldSoldier54 says:

    @142

    Roger that, Brother. There is plenty of sin to go around, the Adversary being an Equal Opportunity Corrupter and all …

    And BK, the Pharisees didn’t have anything on those in the Church who are so ready to pronounce Judgements like “Your hair is getting a little long there, Brother! Where were you last Sunday, Brother? I saw you talking to that Jezebel, the other day … etc, etc, etc.”

    The things of the Ancient of Days are simple, it is men who make it complicated. Keep the Faith.

  42. Ex-PH2 says:

    You want to see God at work?

    Let me get you some pictures of the Orion nebula. There are stars just being pushed out of the nursery, trailing a stream of gas that has been labeled an umbilical by the astronomers who photographed it.

    Don’t tell me there’s no plan to it.

  43. Choag says:

    The plot thickens….from AP: “West Point confirmed that it approved his resignation and that Page had been meeting the academic standards and was not undergoing any disciplinary actions. Page said he had been medically disqualified this semester from receiving a commission in the Army as a second lieutenant – like his classmates will receive in May – because of clinical depression and anxiety. He said his condition has gotten worse since his father killed himself last year.”
    HE WAS BEING BOOTED ANYWAYS! Medically DQ’d! He just had to lob a grenade through the sally ports before being kindly shown the door. This “resignation” was BS!

  44. Bird says:

    I did 20 in the Navy: Enlisted and Officer, Submarine Service and Naval Aviation (TACAIR), plus a stint flying with a Marine attack squadron; starting during the waning days of the draft. I come from a long line of military service and my adult daughter is now serving.

    I may not express this in a fully PC manner, so bear with me. In the early days of my career, there was more emphasis on mission over man, which seems to be reversed now in many aspects. Seems like every time I read something military connected, it’s all about diversity, or individual rights, needs of the individual, etc. I’m not saying the sole focus on mission was fully correct; we burnt out a whole lot of troops and families. On the other hand, the constant ranting about individual ‘rights’ and diversity seems counter productive to unit integrity. Don’t get me wrong; I believe we have the absolute finest military personnel, no matter which service, Enlisted or Officer, in the world. I sometimes wonder if focus on cohesion of the military unit gets lost in all of the discord.

    Having served in both capacities, I believe Page leaving West Point is a good thing for him, but mostly for the Army. His intolerance of others…at least that’s the way I see it….would have affected his ability to effectively lead. Further, is this issue really the main reason to throw away more than 3.5 years of effort, or are grades and other issues really at play? Regardless, I hope he’s held to the same requirement of paying back his 3.5 years of education as others have been and not just given a pass because he went public.

  45. Joe says:

    Ex-PH2 (#144),

    That’s the pattern recognition software in your brain trying (unsuccessfully) to make sense of something really big and complex. When people see complex phenomena, why do they always seem to invoke a god?

  46. Hondo says:

    Joe: or, alternatively, it’s accurate recognition of evidence the Divine in the universe around us. How do you know with certainty which is the truth?

    Short answer: you don’t – because you cannot. The existence or absence of a Deity is not provable; it’s a matter of belief in the absence of concrete proof. That’s why the term “faith” exists.

    Believe whatever you want to believe; it’s a free country. But IMO, it speaks volumes about your character that you belittle others concerning their faith while demanding freedom to express your own opinion concerning the existence of God.

  47. Joe says:

    “Joe: or, alternatively, it’s accurate recognition of evidence the Divine in the universe around us. How do you know with certainty which is the truth?”

    Um, there’s zero empirical evidence for a god?

  48. UpNorth says:

    That’s OK, we know He exists. As for you, there’e zero empirical evidence for Joe.

  49. rb325th says:

    There is zero evidence God does not exist as well… Beliefs are funny things aren’t they? You base your belief that God does not exist on “science”? I base my belief in God(in part) that he created the science you believe in.
    All things happened in such a miraculous coincidence of millions of small occurences to bring us to where we are today, who is to say that is not actually a Higher Power at work?
    You knock others belief system because it differs from yours, but your is a belief system as well.

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