A Virginia lawmaker is calling on the Air Force to reverse a decision to remove a Latin reference to â€œGodâ€ from a logo after an atheist group complained.
Rep. Randy Forbes, (R-VA), said the Air Force removed the logo several weeks ago from the Rapid Capabilities Office. The patch included a line written in Latin that read, â€œDoing Godâ€™s Work with Other Peopleâ€™s Money.â€
But after the Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers complained,
Forbes said the line was rewritten in Latin to read, â€œDoing Miracles with Other Peopleâ€™s Money.â€
Forbes, along with a bi-partisan group of 35 lawmakers, sent a letter to Air Force Secretary Michael Donley and Air Force Chief of Staff Norton Schwartz expressing concern over the decision to remove a non-religious reference to God.
â€œIt is most egregious,â€ Forbes told Fox News. â€œThe Air Force is taking the tone that you canâ€™t even use the word â€˜God.â€™â€
Forbes said his office contacted the Air Force and officials there confirmed that the logo had been changed after the atheist group complained.
A spokesman for the Air Force told Fox News they had received the letter and would investigate the claims.
Forbes said the removal of â€œGodâ€ is a â€œbridge too far in terms of the rights of men and women who serve in our services and their ability to express their faith.â€
â€œBut the significance of this is what the Air Force is saying with this move â€“ that the word â€˜Godâ€™ â€“ whether it has any reference to faith or not, canâ€™t be used in the Air Force,â€ Forbes said.
He said the incident is one of several in recent months that have caused him to wonder if the military is cleansing itself of religious references.
â€œItâ€™s a very dangerous course to take,â€ he said.
â€œI am concerned that the RCO capitulated to pressure from an outside group that consistently seeks to remove references to God and faith in our military,â€ he said. â€˜The RCOâ€™s action to modify the logo sets a dangerous precedent that all references to God, regardless of context, must be removed from the military.â€