DOJ defunds Young Marines for recognizing God

young marines

This Week’s Sign the Apocalypse is Upon Us
by Rebekah Maxwell

It’s for the children.

The ever-growing slice of money you find suspiciously subtracted from your paycheck, under the “taxes withheld” section. Federal, state, local, fee upon fee. It’s for the children. You don’t need to possess the money you earned. We the Guv’ment must confiscate…er, collect your compulsory contribution for the good of the community. For the children.

Unless those children mention “God,” or want to pray to Him. They can go kick rocks.

Todd Starnes of FOX News reports:

Julian Whittington, the sheriff of Bossier Parish, Louisiana says the Department of Justice Office of Civil Rights defunded $30,000 for their Young Marines chapter, as well as a youth diversion program.

Federal officials objected to a voluntary student-led prayer in the department’s youth diversion program and an oath recited by the Young Marines that mentions God, according to Whittington, who blasted what he considers the government’s “aggression and infringement of our religious freedoms.”

“We were informed that these are unacceptable inherently religious activities and the Department of Justice would not be able to fund the programs if it continued,” Whittington told Fox News. “They wanted a letter from me stating that I would no longer have voluntary prayer and I would also have to remove ‘God’ from the Young Marine’s oath.”

The sheriff was told he would not be given any money unless he wrote a letter pledging not to pray or use the word “God.”

“I flat said, ‘It’s not going to happen,’” he said. “Enough is enough. This is the United States of America — and the idea that the mere mention of God or voluntary prayer is prohibited is ridiculous.”

The Young Marine’s oath states:

“From this day forward, I sincerely promise, I will set an example for all other youth to follow and I shall never do anything that would bring disgrace or dishonor upon God, my Country and its flag, my parents, myself or the Young Marines. These I will honor and respect in a manner that will reflect credit upon them and myself. Semper Fidelis.”

Ironically, both the U.S. military’s commissioning oath and enlistment oath include the phrase, “So help me God.”

Whittington said he could not understand why the federal government would take issue with the oath or the prayers.

“Right here in good old Bossier Parish, Louisiana, in the United States of America — something as basic as voluntary prayer and the mere mention of God is offensive and prohibited (by the government),” he said.

Both youth programs have been hailed as a successful way to reach at-risk young people. Since 2002, more than 1,000 young people have graduated from the program, directed by a Bossier Parish deputy who is a former U.S. Marine.

The federal money had been used to purchase uniforms and supplies for the kids. But Whittington said it’s not about the money.

“The money is not the issue,” he said. “It’s the principle of the matter. What is going on here? Who is dictating what can or can’t be said in Bossier Parish?”

The sheriff fired off a letter to Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal defending his decision not to compromise.

“This is an appalling situation where someone at the Department of Justice Office of Civil Rights in Washington, D.C. could, would and did go to great lengths to prevent even the mere mention of God in any way to the youth in these programs,” he wrote.

Gov. Bobby Jindal has yet to reply.

Were one to advise the fine Governor of Louisiana (especially if he wants his name anywhere near the terms, “Presidential” and “2016”), I’d say to take this situation like the opportunity that it is.

Start a collection for the Young Marines, Governor. Make a personal donation to the group, then pass the hat. Publicly commend Sheriff Whittington for standing up for the values of his district and his state.

Get up on the highest podium you can find, flanked by Young Marines in uniform, and say, “The federal government has determined that funding youth programs that encourage honor, leadership, and military service now runs contrary to their priorities. Well, here in Louisiana, we have our own priorities. We uphold a Constitution forged in prayer, for a country founded on faith. We respect the God that the U.S. Military swears by, and the Bible we swear upon. We will not undermine our brave heroes by attacking the faith that keeps so many of them strong in the very shadow of death. And it is our honor and our duty to take care of our own children and support the legacy that made us free.”

Then he can take the DOJ letter from the sheriff, rip it in two, and say “Thanks, but no thanks, Washington.”

That ought to get their attention.


  • teddifish

    Question: If this organization was using federal money and talking about Allah, would it still be ok? It seems to me that we all have an interest in keeping religious activities and federal funding separate. N’est pas?

    • Kami_sama_no_Otaku

      Freedom of religion, not freedom from religion. Our founding documents recognize the same “God” as the oath in question, and in either case voluntary student led prayer is voluntary student led prayer.

      Stating you can’t use “God” here the way it is used in countless founding documents of our country isn’t neutrality… it is an attack on those faiths that recognize such a God (even if they don’t all agree on exactly what constitutes “God”) and undermines our countries own identity and authority.

      The closest you can come to neutrality is… to just say “God”. The Christian will think of the Trinity. The Orthodox Jew of Yaweh. The Muslim of Allah… and the atheist of his ultimate authority: himself.

    • Dona

      This country has taken on an anti-Christian mood but any other religion is okay. This country needs to stick with the Christian principles that it was founded on. It is the only religion that allows freedom to choose what religion a person wants to follow. Secularists want no religion in the public square. Muslims kill infidels. Christians allow people to choose the religion they want to follow and love those who hate them. The government is anti-Christian but seems to be pro-muslim. I’ve included articles here where the government is more than happy to fund muslims, yet they pull funding for anything with any hint of Christianity. Really people? Study your history. Christianity has made the best place to live. People have been willing to die to get into our country. You don’t see them doing that to get into other countries.

  • teddifish

    Kami, it’s not an attack on faith at all–just a separation of faith from funding. No one is saying people can’t have prayer–just that taxpayer dollars shouldn’t support it. I’m not sure why that is a problem.

    • Kami_sama_no_Otaku

      Except you can’t separate “faith” from “funding”. Everyone has a faith, even if they don’t recognize it. Yes, there is the obvious such as the Christian, but there is also the many who worships money and power… or government.

      The United States is founded upon Christian ideology, and cites that ideology to justify itself; if all men are not created equal, that they are not endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, then the justification for the founding of this country and the source from which its government draws its authority are null and void.
      So… an oath that is meaningless without God can’t cite “God”? Student led, voluntary prayer is somehow “tax payer supported”?

      If you wish to continue discussing this, remember that if you don’t actually “reply” to a comment, I will receive no notification of any responses (if you did hit “reply”, for some reason it didn’t show up as such on my end). Also, I apologize for my confusing screen name, but it is what it is and if you need to shorten it… go with “Otaku”: the first part is a modifier for “otaku”. I am in the middle of moving to a new place so it is likely I won’t succeed at continuing the discussion, but we can try.

  • dona

    What the government funds, it supports. Right now it’s cool to support homosexuals and illegal aliens but not leadership, honor, and military service. We have our priorities messed up in this country and it shows!!! As Isaiah 5:20 says, Woe to those who call evil good and good evil. God, and the morals and principals that come from following Him are good and decent and lately they are seen as criminal. But let people break the law, such as coming into this country illegally, and they are seen as defended. We are really messed up!!