by Pam Zubeck
We told you on March 10 that the Air Force had assigned Ret. Gen. Patrick Gamble to survey the Air Force Academy's religious climate.
Now, it's happening, according to an e-mail obtained by the Indy.
Subject: Religious Climate Review Team: Request for volunteers for individual interviews
A Religious Climate Review Team, led by General Patrick K. Gamble, USAF (ret.), would like to hear from you about your impressions of and experiences with the religious climate at the Air Force Academy. This review is not an investigation or compliance inspection, but rather an independent look at the overall religious climate at USAFA. Your perspective as a faculty member will play a critical part of our understanding of the climate.
If you would like to volunteer to be interviewed, one-on-one, by a member of the Religious Climate Review Team, please send an email to us at USAFA/RCRT@usafa.edu to coordinate your appointment. This email address has been established by the Religious Climate Review Team and is only accessible by us.
Anyone who speaks with us can do so in confidence. If you request, we will not disclose your identity — either by name or uniquely identifying facts. We sincerely hope this confidentiality will encourage individuals to come forward to discuss their personal experiences concerning the religious climate at USAFA.
Multiple slots available for each session:
Wednesday, 30 Mar 0920-0950 (primary)
Wednesday, 30 Mar 1050-1120
Thursday, 31 Mar 0920-0950 (overflow)
Friday, 1 Apr 1020-11120 (overflow)
We look forward to hearing from you!
Religious Climate Review Team
Notice how they're offering confidentiality? That might be due to the contention by the Military Religious Freedom Foundation that it has upwards of 200 clients who work at the academy who are scared stiff of leaking how they feel about religious intolerance for fear of retribution.
This whole thing goes back to 2004-05 when cadets and faculty alleged the academy had a bias in favor of evangelical Christianity. Back then, in case anyone has forgotten, the Air Force got an old general to head up a study that concluded there were problems, but it wasn't a grand conspiracy only the result of a lack of awareness.
A story in the daily at that time (by yours truly) reported in late June 2005:
At a Pentagon news conference, task force leader Lt. Gen. Roger Brady, Air Force deputy chief of staff for personnel, said, "Is it really widespread? I don’t think so."
This, after the then-Supt. Lt. Gen. John Rosa had said three weeks earlier that religious bias problems saturated his "entire organization."
Any guesses on what Gamble's findings will be? Stay tuned.