Semper Fi

Ok, so the last post was a bit depressing. And, frankly, the commentary on the vast majority of published versions of the Camp Pendleton Cross story have been depressing.

Best commentary? The Marine Corps News. OF COURSE there are individuals there who honor their crosses over their constitution. But damned if there aren’t a whole lot of thoughtful Marines who know and respect the rule of law.

There will always be disagreement and variability of opinion. That does not bother me. What bothers me is the appearance of an assumption that All Marines Are Christians, and that Marines will follow the bible first, the constitution second. The death threats–yes, death threats–against fellow Americans, because they would remove an unconstitutionally installed religious marker from federal property.

So when I saw “The Marine Corps News”, I expected more of the same. I was wrong, and happily so. When roughly a fifth of our armed forces declare themselves non-religious (2004 study, check page 25, table 5), they have to be somewhere! And at the Marine Corps News, those whose allegiance is (as per their oaths) to the constitution are a match for those whose allegiance is to the cross.

No rhyme here–just happy to be wrong.


  1. Graham Martin-Royle says

    I wonder why it is that I, a foreigner, can understand why the erection of this cross is wrong and yet so many USA citizens can’t? Do we who don’t live there actually know the USA constitution better than those who do live there? How bizarre.

  2. mutt50 says

    As a former Marine, I can tell you the Corps has it’s share of non-religious folks (atheists/agnostics/deists), gay folks, and the religious fundies, which are usually also xenophobes, sexist, and/or racist. It is up to the senior officer corps to instill tolerance and weed out the haters. They mostly do a half-assed job of this. Until recently, a great Marine could be kicked out for being gay, and a flaming bigot could finish a career.
    Change is slow, but it’s coming.

  3. astrosmash says

    ” Do we who don’t live there actually know the USA constitution better than those who do live there?”

    As an american…Short answer. Yes.

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