Brandon Longcrier 
Member since Feb 14, 2013


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Re: “UPDATE: Bible verse gets Mikey going, again

"Hot Stuff" (at least I have the courage to post as me and use my real name), I encourage you to continue posting because with each and every post, you make the case for separation of church and state clearer and clearer.

Also, you seem to think that I have something against your faith or that I want to debate it, but that simply isn't the case. It's obvious that you and others have completely missed the point here, which is Professional Behavior vs. Unprofessional Behavior, not religion. And I'm actually quite irritated with myself for even responding to you because I know your kind. You're 100% set in your ways and will never see, or even try to see the other side to this argument.

My spiritual or non-spiritual beliefs have nothing to do with my stance on this topic. I've spent my entire Air Force career (18 years and counting) as someone who has followed the rules, instructions, and regulations to the best of my ability; and I expect others to do the same. Most of what I posted above are copied and pasted straight out of Air Force regulations. I'm not making this stuff up. So you can ramble on all you want about your interpretation of history and your faith, but the rules are the rules and I'm sorry, but you lose.

16 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Brandon Longcrier on 03/13/2014 at 11:20 AM

Re: “UPDATE: Bible verse gets Mikey going, again

Oh and just because something has always been done a certain way, doesn't make it right. The USA is a great country, but not without fault. We've come a long way from the days of slavery, women's rights (or lack thereof), segregation, etc... But we still have a long way to go yet.

20 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Brandon Longcrier on 03/12/2014 at 2:17 PM

Re: “UPDATE: Bible verse gets Mikey going, again

I never said anything about the Bible. If the message was out of any other religious text, I would have the same stance on the issue. And to make myself clear, there are many verses in various religious text (including the Bible) that would be just fine to put up on a board. The problem with this one, was that it made clear the religious stance of the cadet who also had rank and/or title listed. I'm just saying that it's unprofessional.

And you can spout off all the historical data you want about how this country was founded on this or that, but truth be told; this country was founded on religious freedom, not one religion over another. And I don't care if all the founding fathers were Christian. At least they had enough respect for others to write the constitution in a way that didn't serve one religion over another.

21 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Brandon Longcrier on 03/12/2014 at 2:10 PM

Re: “UPDATE: Bible verse gets Mikey going, again

We have rules people. Plain and simple.

AFI1-1 7 AUGUST 2012

2.11. Government Neutrality Regarding Religion. Leaders at all levels must balance
constitutional protections for an individual’s free exercise of religion or other personal beliefs and the constitutional prohibition against governmental establishment of religion. For example, they must avoid the actual or apparent use of their position to promote their personal religious beliefs to their subordinates or to extend preferential treatment for any religion. Commanders or supervisors who engage in such behavior may cause members to doubt their impartiality and objectivity. The potential result is a degradation of the unit’s morale, good order, and discipline. Airmen, especially commanders and supervisors, must ensure that in exercising their right of religious free expression, they do not degrade morale, good order, and discipline in the Air Force or degrade the trust and confidence that the public has in the United States Air Force.

2.12. Free Exercise of Religion and Religious Accommodation. Supporting the right of free
exercise of religion relates directly to the Air Force core values and the ability to maintain an effective team.

2.12.1. All Airmen are able to choose to practice their particular religion, or subscribe to no
religious belief at all. You should confidently practice your own beliefs while respecting
others whose viewpoints differ from your own.

2.12.2. Your right to practice your religious beliefs does not excuse you from complying
with directives, instructions, and lawful orders; however, you may request religious
accommodation. Requests can be denied based on military necessity. Commanders and
supervisors at all levels are expected to ensure that requests for religious accommodation are dealt with fairly.

16 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Brandon Longcrier on 03/12/2014 at 9:44 AM

Re: “UPDATE: Bible verse gets Mikey going, again

Below is just a taste of some of the things that civilians may think that us military folks should have control over, but don't. So not only do our dorm rooms belong to the government, but so do we. And guess what...we're ok with that. Those of us who want to follow the rules anyway.

- Tattoos and body piercings are regulated

- Religious Apparel is regulated. Example: While in uniform, you can wear a necklace with a cross (or whatever religious symbol) on it all day, but it must remain inside your shirt and not be seen.

- While in uniform; Do not stand or walk with hand(s) in pocket(s), except to insert or remove an item.

- While in uniform; Do not smoke or use smokeless products in other than designated smoking areas.

- While in uniform; Do not consume food and/or beverage while walking.

- While walking in uniform use of personal electronic media devices, including ear pieces,
speaker phones or text messaging is limited to emergencies or when official notifications are necessary

- We can be punished for getting a bad sunburn.

- You do know that we have standards which regulate the hair on our heads and faces, right?

- In uniform on or off a military installation: With the exception of earrings for women, all members are prohibited from attaching, affixing, or displaying objects, articles, jewelry or ornamentation to or through the ear, nose, tongue, eye brows, lips, or any exposed body part (includes visible through the uniform).

- "IN CIVILIAN ATTIRE on official duty on OR OFF A MILITARY INSTALLATION: With the exception of earrings for women, all members are prohibited from attaching, affixing or displaying objects, articles, jewelry or ornamentation to and/or through the ear,
nose, tongue, eye brows, lips, or any exposed body part (includes visible through clothing)."

- Dental ornamentation: Teeth, whether natural, capped, or veneered, will not be
ornamented with designs, jewels, initials, etc. The use of yellow gold, white gold, or
platinum caps (permanent or temporary) merely to add ornamentation to the teeth and not required by dental/medical necessity is prohibited.

- Intentional alterations and/or modifications to a members
body that result in a visible, physical effect that disfigures, deforms or otherwise detracts from a professional military image are prohibited. Examples of prohibited conduct include (but are not limited to) tongue splitting or forking, tooth filing, acquiring visible, disfiguring skin implants, and gouging (piercing holes large enough to permit light to shine through.)

- Intentional alterations and/or modifications to a members
body that result in a visible, physical effect that disfigures, deforms or otherwise detracts from a professional military image are prohibited. Examples of prohibited conduct include (but are not limited to) tongue splitting or forking, tooth filing, acquiring visible, disfiguring skin implants, and gouging (piercing holes large enough to permit light to shine through.)

- Airmen may wear a total of no more than three rings; wedding sets count as one ring when worn as a set. Rings will be worn at the base of the finger, and will not be worn on the thumb.

- Necklaces will not be visible at any time while in uniform. If worn, will be concealed under a collar or undershirt

- Eyeglasses/Sunglasses/Contact Lenses. Will be worn in the manner for which they
are made. Eyeglasses and sunglasses will not be worn around the neck or on top/back of
head or exposed hanging on the uniform.


So, tell us about all those constitutional freedoms we have again. Actually, don't. Most of us had a pretty good idea what we were getting into when we signed the dotted line and we did it anyway. We're here to serve our country first. Everything else comes second...including religion. If you want to put your religion before your country, then there are other groups out there you should join, but it isn't the US Armed Forces. We have a mission to do that doesn't need to be hindered by your religious convictions. That doesn't mean you can't have and practice your religion in the military, but there's a time and a place for it, and it isn't in the work place or posted on your door next to your rank / title.


You can find everything listed above in AFI 36-2903. Google it and see for yourself.

Knowledge is power!

14 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Brandon Longcrier on 03/12/2014 at 9:27 AM

Re: “UPDATE: Bible verse gets Mikey going, again

Taking a quick glance at many of the comments posted here, it's easy to see how many of you have never served a day in your life and you probably shouldn't be making comments about things you know nothing about.

Like others have said, we don't have the same constitutional rights as civilians. And as far as the whiteboard message goes, whether you believe it was within the Cadet's rights to write the message or not isn't even the issue here. What the Cadet should have asked him or herself before writing the message was, "Will what I'm about to write be considered "PROFESSIONAL"? And the answer should have been "No".

Many of you say that this is the Cadet's personal space, but you're wrong. When I was in technical training school (Keesler AFB, Biloxi Mississippi), I lived in the dorms. We could not have pictures of women or men (clothed or not) hanging up in our rooms; pictures of our girlfriends or boyfriends had to be in "good taste"; we're weren't allowed to wear clothing that depicted sexy, violent, or drug related images on them (this rule applies for everyone on military bases); nor could we have anything political laying around where others could see it.

So the fact that you "live" in a government building doesn't mean that space belongs to you. That space belongs to the government and they're just "letting" you stay there a while. Have you ever seen a dorm room? Do you think that over 4000 Cadets arrange their rooms the same way because they all think the same? Not at all. The rooms are arranged the same way because they are told how to arrange their rooms and what they can or can't have in those rooms. Sure they get more freedom the longer they're here, but the fundamental rules still apply. Keep it professional!

16 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Brandon Longcrier on 03/12/2014 at 8:50 AM

Re: “UPDATE: Bible verse gets Mikey going, again

It makes me so angry that something like this made it the Military Religious Freedom Foundation in the first place and the fact that people are so quick to send something such as this to MRFF should be looked at as a direct reflection on how leadership in the ranks is viewed these days.

I mean really, how many Officers, NCOs, and/or Cadets walked by this and did nothing? I don't understand why Officers and NCOs wouldn't do anything, but to tell you the truth; I do understand why Cadets didn't. I've been at the Air Force Academy for a long time now now and it's a good day if I can make it through the entire day without seeing Cadets dressed incorrectly. If they aren't being taught how to dress or being held accountable for not dressing correctly, then do you really think that they care about getting in trouble over something like this?

I use to be "that guy" who would correct Cadets on the spot, but I must admit that I've grown tired of telling future Officers / adults how to dress or anything else that should have been learned in basic training. And I hate to admit that about myself because there was a time when I placed great pride in the institution that raised me from the tender of age of 18 to where I am today. Now, I just can't wait for them to let me out of here.

I've met a lot of great Cadets, Officers, NCOs, and staff during my time here at USAFA, but ultimately, this assignment has shown me a side of the Air Force that I would have been perfectly ok never knowing about. So for any Officers, Faculty, Staff, or NCOs reading this... WE HAVE FAILED THE CADETS and it's up to US to fix it. So either we pull our heads out of the sand, or we let the Military Religious Freedom Foundation do it for us.

30 likes, 14 dislikes
Posted by Brandon Longcrier on 03/11/2014 at 3:47 PM

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