Back in November, Family Research Council president Tony Perkins charged that the Obama administration “has been the most hostile toward religious freedom” and particularly “hostile toward Christianity.” However, apparently the freedom of religion for non-Christians is not important for Perkins, who today was joined by Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-MO) on Washington Watch Weekly where they condemned the Air Force Academy for allowing self-identified pagans to build and pray at an outdoor worship grounds. As Air Force Chaplain Maj. Darren Duncan told the Los Angeles Times, “We’re here to accommodate all religions, period,” noting that Muslim, Buddhist and Hindu cadets also have worship spaces on campus.
The Air Force Academy spent $3.5 million to build the Cadet Chapel, but Perkins and Hartzler were outraged that the Academy spent $80,000 on the pagan worship center. Perkins said that it shows government “promotion” of “fringe religions” and Hartzler called the move “crazy.” Hartzler went on to say that “Christianity is the main religion in our country” and the government should not be “facilitating or accommodating fringe religions.”
While Perkins and Hartzler say they speak for the freedoms of people of faith, they clearly lack any respect for the freedoms of Americans, even service members, of minority religions:
Perkins: Do you see this as a part of a growing trend that we see that there is really kind of a marginalization of Christianity and almost a promotion of other forms of, I would have to say, fringe religions?
Hartzler: I agree, I think so. Christianity is the main religion in our country and as a policy for the Department of Defense we need to defend the practice of religion but we do not have to obligate taxpayer funds to facilitate or accommodate it or pay for it.
Perkins: Is it the government’s role to try to put all religions on the same plane?
Hartzler: No, it’s not their role at all. Their role is to facilitate basic policy for our country and to not to try to lift up one religion over the other, they should be defending the basic rights that we have, that freedom of religion here, and certainly not facilitating or accommodating fringe religions, it’s crazy.