Speaking about incidents in which atheists allow themselves to suffer abuse without standing up to the abusers, the Daily Kos has a story of a presentation given to air force officers in England. This presentation was camouflaged as a talk on suicide prevention. It was, in fact, a propaganda lecture telling air force officers that a life is not worth living unless it is spent fighting against atheists, materialists (naturalists), and evolutionists.
(See: Daily Kos: Creationism: The Latest in Military Suicide Prevention.)
This slide tells the theme of the presentation:
This is a classic "us" verses "them" propaganda piece. Where "us", the "good guys", the ones who have lives worth living believe in God, and "them", "the enemy", "those the good guys are truly at war against", are those who do not believe in God.
The Daily Kos referenced above ends with a declaration that those who are responsible for this presentation should face trial.
This 'Purpose-Driven Airmen' mandatory presentation is the epitome of military-sanctioned 'hatred of the other' and those commanding its viewing must face trial by General Courts Martial."
They are entirely correct. If this were a story about an air force officer, not in uniform, expressing a private opinion – even if he does so before an audience as a guest speaker – then the only legitimate response would be in the form of words of condemnation and private actions – though both words and private actions should express the harshest condemnation.
As it stands, the people who used their air force authority to command attendance at this presentation should be treated no differently than if they had given a presentation in which "them" were the Jews and the nation of Israel, or "them" were blacks corrupting the pure and wholesome blood of the white race.
This case represents an abuse of authority and, unless it is punished, delivers the message that the official government position (the position that the government has the right to order those in uniform to learn) is that atheists are, in fact, the enemy, and deservedly regarded as such by all military officers.
We have a right to demand that the prestige and authority of the U.S. government not be put behind a message of hate such as this – and to punish those who use their authority as officers in the military to execute such a campaign of hate.
Yet, the question remains whether the people responsible for this presentation will get the punishment they deserve. It is a question about whether those concerned with right and wrong in this case care enough to demand punishment.
Please consider contacting the Military Religious Freedom Foundation and ask them how you can best help them ensure that justice is done in this case.