On June 25, I sarcastically wrote that someone needed to call the ACLU because Fort Lee scheduled a concert of Christian and Gospel music. It’s not as if the ACLU doesn’t have a track record here: It has spouted its most tenuous of all its “separation of church and state” claims into the ranks of the military before, especially when the Boy Scouts contracted the use of one of its bases (Fort A.P. Hill) for its Jamboree a few years ago because the Boy Scouts recognize God. (“God forbid!” the atheist said.)
Well now! Who is to say we don’t have an influence around these here parts? Look what we found in The Washington Post, datelined June 25 (click here for entire article):
The American Civil Liberties Union is threatening to sue the U.S. Naval Academy unless it abolishes its daily lunchtime prayer, saying that some midshipmen have felt pressured to participate.
In a letter to the Naval Academy, Deborah Jeon, legal director for the ACLU of Maryland, said it was “long past time” for the academy to discontinue the tradition. She said the practice violates midshipmen’s freedom to practice religion as their conscience leads them.
We like the Naval Academy’s response:
The Naval Academy rejected the ACLU’s request that the prayer be eliminated.
“The academy does not intend to change its practice of offering midshipmen an opportunity for prayer or devotional thought during noon meal announcements,” the university said in a statement. It said that some form of prayer has been offered for midshipmen at meals since the school’s founding, in 1845, and that it is “consistent with other practices throughout the Navy.”
This prayer is voluntary. If those in training to defend our country want to give thanks and receive the blessings through the strength of group prayer to the Lord their Creator throughout this process, they have every right. If they have not a care, a minute of silence might do them good in the bustle of an Annapolis day. If it makes them better officers to defend America, why should the atheists care? Who does this hurt, except our country, if this moment of prayer benefits us with the best possible officers? Shouldn’t we all want the best possible officers?
We want to publicly offer our apologies to the entire U.S. Military and, in particular, the United States Naval Academy for any role we may have had in this nuisance of an inconvenience brought on by the busy bodies at the ACLU, who constantly look for a solution where there are only imaginary problems regarding church and state. So, while we have nothing against West Point, in this instance, we’re fully behind the Middies.