Air Force stands alone in requiring atheists to say ‘so help me God’

Sep 16, 2014

By Stephen Losey

An atheist airman who must take a reenlistment oath concluding “so help me God” or end his Air Force career would have better luck enlisting in the Army, Navy or Marine Corps, which allow soldiers, sailors and Marines to omit the phrase.

Air Force officials have said “so help me God” is a required part of the oath, spelled out in Title 10 USC 502 that governs military reenlistment. The Air Force is asking the Defense Department’s general counsel for a legal review of the rule, and said its opinion will help inform future decisions.

The other branches of the armed forces, which are subject to the same statute, have a different interpretation of the requirements, spokesmen for the services said Sept. 10 and 11. Soldiers, sailors and Marines may choose not to say “so help me God.”

And a Pentagon official said the issue is settled — and the Air Force is wrong.

Read more here.

11 comments on “Air Force stands alone in requiring atheists to say ‘so help me God’

  • If this goes to court, I think the AHA should go one further and state that if the person is religious they should be able to use “God” by any other name……”so help me Allah” should see a few veins pop!!!



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  • But who takes the decisions in the US Air Force? a board of high ranking officers, a high command, a general… … Superman? The Air Force isn’t a private firm whose owner is the Church (whichever), anyone should be able to take the oath in the name of Yahweh, Allah, God, the Flying Spaghetti Monster, the Pink Unicorn, etc, if people believe in these Beings. An atheist, not being a believer, shouldn’t be forced to mention these creatures at all. The Air Force seems to be placing religion before national security, as the candidate appears to be an experienced airman seeking reenlistment in the USAF. As I said once the airman ought to sue that institution for discrimination based on religious beliefs or lack of them. The US Army, Navy and Marine Corps allow soldiers, sailors and Marines to omit the phrase, therefore, the Air Force, whose owner is the same as the owner of the above Services, should do the same. Must do the same.



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  • I was at the Anaheim Angels (Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim is an abomination) game on Tuesday, September 16. Before the game, in an on-field ceremony, a local group of Army recruits was sworn in. The last words of the oath? “So help me god”. God could’ve helped the Angels. They were smoked 13-2.



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  • Come on you guys ! When some person sitting under a mountain in Colorado has to push the button to destroy a wedding party in Pakistan, that person has to feel that they have done the right thing ! God can be very useful that way.



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  • Army recruits [ ] sworn in

    Is that what the uniformed folks (top photo) are doing? Makes sense, top-notch propaganda, err publicity.

    Funny, I never questioned the appearance of military on fields. Even at high school games, the cub scouts are the ones who carry the American flag to the 50 yard line.

    Just shows to go blind faith at something grandfathered in. Have courage, step back and say “wtf?”.



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  • 10
    Light Wave says:

    There are three things you could do….don’t join them at all……..leave on account of secular prejudice ……….lie if you’ve no morals and still want to join…….



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