Fighting for our servicemembers' rights, so they can fight for ours.
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MRFF Contact: Bekki Miller
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MRFF Founder and President Mikey Weinstein Ranked as One of the 100 Most Influential
People in U.S. Defense
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
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MRFF's loudest critics often claim that we lack credibility
or influence, despite the fact that they are forced to contend with our highly effective advocacy. This inaugural ranking among the 100 Most Influential People in U.S. Defense, just released by Defense News, proves that criticism to be no more
a shameful "poisoning of the well." As one individual on the list explained, inclusion on the list is a matter of "…making change, it’s not just celebrity." As a distinguished "Opinion shaper" exercising a hard-fought influence over the U.S. Armed Forces, Mikey's influence has been recognized as exceeding that of former General David Petraeus himself by a publication that represents the world's biggest military newsroom.
Attorney and businessman Mikey Weinstein has fought for years to defend servicemembers' religious liberties. As the Founder and President of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF), it's been his arduous task to safeguard the United States Constitution's protections for the civil rights of those who fight to protect our freedoms. MRFF's outspoken defense of church-state separation within the military has led to the removal of official U.S. Military emblems from commercial Holman Military Bibles, the exposure of mandatory "mass Christian prayer" sessions, and the issuance of instructions that standardize and strengthen religious neutrality within the U.S. Air Force, among other achievements this year alone. MRFF's efficacy has led to it being nominated for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize, marking the fifth occasion and fourth consecutive year of receiving a nomination for the prestigious award.
Click here for a list of MRFF's past achievements and victories
Speaking from Albuquerque, New Mexico, Weinstein noted:
"This honor belongs not just to myself alone, but to all of us at MRFF who've put in our blood, sweat, and tears to support our brave men and women in uniform. Most importantly, it represents a nontrivial victory for the 30,000-plus MRFF clients within the armed forces who've long sought to bring attention to the metastasizing cancer of Christian fundamentalism within their ranks. We at MRFF wouldn't be on this list if we didn't work tooth-and-nail, 24/7, against the tsunami of religious zealotry that our servicemembers are subject to. Hyper-evangelical Dominionist Christian supremacy shall not pass -- not if we have anything to say about it!"
BY DEFENSE NEWS
100 Most Influential
People in U.S. Defense
Monday, December 17, 2012
#95 - Mikey Weinstein
Founder of Military Religious Freedom Foundation
A former Air Force officer and White House lawyer during the Reagan administration, Weinstein is today a one-issue whistle-blower who has driven real change in religious policy throughout the military. Advocating for secularism in the military through the Military Religious Freedom Foundation he founded in 2005, Weinstein has fought a campaign against public prayer and proselytizing by Air Force officers, particularly at the Air Force Academy, his alma mater, where he says he and his sons experienced religious discrimination. Weinstein has been accused of tilting at windmills in his struggles, but he scored a major victory in 2011, when the Air Force suspended a training course for nuclear missile launch officers that used Bible passages and religious imagery in a PowerPoint presentation about the ethics of war. Weinstein's public persistence continues to influence Pentagon religious policies, including new rules released in 2012 restricting the sale of Bibles adorned with military insignia.
How this list was compiled:
- This inaugural 100 Most Influential People in U.S. Defense list was compiled over five months by more than two dozen reporters and editors representing the world's biggest military newsroom and the award-winning staffs of Gannett Government Media's sector-leading publications: Defense News, Army Times, Air Force Times, Navy Times, Marine Corps Times, Armed Forces Journal and Federal Times.
- Individuals' personal influence — not just the power that comes with their offices — was foremost in our minds. What makes someone influential? One individual on the list explains it this way: "Influence is making change, it's not just celebrity."
- More than 200 candidates were nominated by staffers and vetted through sources. Each person's clout in shaping American defense policy, strategy and capability was discussed, debated and analyzed.
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