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Sat Oct 26, 2013, 01:12 PM

So Help Me God

In light of the fact that the Air Force academy has made this oath optional, I'm wondering how others feel about this. On the one hand, I would be tempted to make a statement by protesting the oath, having to put my hand on the bible in court, etc., but on the other hand the words and the book mean nothing to me anyway so I might just pass on the flack and blowback.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/25/air-force-oath-god_n_4164796.html

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Arrow 3 replies Author Time Post
Reply So Help Me God (Original post)
Brainstormy Oct 2013 OP
Curmudgeoness Oct 2013 #1
Brainstormy Oct 2013 #2
LostOne4Ever Oct 2013 #3

Response to Brainstormy (Original post)

Sat Oct 26, 2013, 02:45 PM

1. "What does it mean, 'optional'?" Weinstein said. "The best thing is to eliminate it."

I agree. As long as it is even optional, it causes those who chose to opt out to be conspicuous. Better to eliminate it. If they don't think that people will take the oath seriously if they do not have this "so help me god" in there, they have bigger problems. An oath is an oath, with or without a reference to God. I am quite sure that no one takes this any more seriously than if it was not in there...they either will abide by their oath, or they won't....so help me god or not. Maybe they could replace it with "cross my heart and hope to die".

As to oaths required to use God or the Bible, it is laughable that atheists would worry at all about this. You are right, it doesn't mean a thing to us. You might as well have us put our hand on a Danielle Steele book. I would probably be willing to take flack for refusing at this point in my life, but I would not have been so willing years ago....I would have kept my mouth shut and just gone through the motions. But I am less tolerant these days with the Christian push on everything. Different times, different attitudes.

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Response to Curmudgeoness (Reply #1)

Sat Oct 26, 2013, 11:54 PM

2. You nailed it

insofar as it has much to do with where you are in your life. It's a judgment call. But you're right, too, about the very nature of an oath, which, I think is finally a very personal commitment, public declarations aside.

I love the Danielle Steele analogy!

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Response to Brainstormy (Original post)

Sun Oct 27, 2013, 01:52 AM

3. Im not in the military

So please excuse the stupid question:

Is this oath taken publically or privately?

In my mind if it is taken publically then its an illusion of choice to many atheists who are not ready or able to come out openly as an atheist. Further, it uses coercion to force an oath to a deity they don't believe in on the cadets.

Conversely, if it is private and they ensure that it won't be leaked out then I don't see the problem.

Safest bet, eitherway, is just to get rid of it. If the religious want to make an oath to god, let them make their own oath, on their own time, at their own location. The military can't stop them and they can be as devout as they please. This is logical, practical and leaves everyone happy.

OF COURSE that the rub isn't it? It has NOTHING to do with the oath at all. This is about linking god and religion to the military and to the government. Its about coercion and making atheist not feel welcome in the military and make us feel like we are not real citizens.

It being there is about propaganda.

Not all those who wander are LOST!!!

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