Wednesday, November 11, 2009

No Religious Extremists in the Military

10/11/2009—Happy Veterans Day. Today’s topic is whether members of a religion prone to violence should be permitted in our nation’s military. Just two recent examples: Christian terrorist Scott Roeder told The Associated Press on Monday he plans to argue he was justified in shooting Dr. George Tiller to protect unborn children; in Pittsburgh, on August 4, George Sodini shot and killed 3 women and wounded 9 others before taking his own life. Here is an entry from his blog: "Maybe soon, I will see God and Jesus. At least that is what I was told. Eternal life does NOT depend on works. If it did, we will all be in hell. Christ paid for EVERY sin, so how can I or you be judged BY GOD for a sin when the penalty was ALREADY paid. People judge but that does not matter."

The problem with Christianity is that its dogma of an afterlife with God in heaven assures its believers bliss for eternity if only they serve God to the greatest possible extreme while alive. If we don’t actually keep Christians out of the military, we should at least be careful to make sure the Christians we do allow in are not tainted by Christian extremism.

Actually, I’m not serious. It’s just my way of putting in perspective the murders committed by Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, a Muslim, at Ft. Hood. All religions have their violent extremists. Secularists do too, as evidenced by Mao, Stalin and Pol Pot.

What should we do about it? Fortunately, the Constitution gives the answer: Nothing. The only way for a free society to combat religious hatred is by practicing freedom. Of course, there must always be vigilance and media reports suggest that in Hasan’s case, the government might have had enough information to prevent this tragedy.

Nevertheless, in the end, the most important thing is to treat all Americans equally regardless of race, color, national origin or religion. No special tests, no particular investigations.

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