Friday, February 25, 2011

Rock Beyond Belief

A secular-type person?  Going to be anywhere near North Carolina on April 2nd?  Then consider attending:

From a statement by the Military Associations of Atheists and Freethinkers (MAAF) on how the event originated:

On Sep 25th, 2010, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association held a concert on the Fort Bragg Main Parade Field. Attendance was projected by BGEA to be 10,000, but photos indicate closer to hundreds than thousands. Whatever the size, this event was specifically "evangelical in nature" according to the event site and letters sent to the community by the senior Ft Bragg chaplain. The photos also show that the Golden Knights parachute team performed at the event, which requires special military authorization. An included "Family Fun Event" has balloons and face painting targeted at children and the "God Rocks" children ministry. The prayer call associated with the event calls for soldiers to bring their "battle buddies". The chaplain enthusiastically encouraged members of the local community to attend. New reports by the Freedom From Religion Foundation show the Army spent at least $50,000 of taxpayer funds on this event. . .
On a positive note, the Ft Bragg commander's letter offered "similar support to comparable events." The fact is that only evangelical Christians would request an evangelical event, so there will be no request for a 'comparable event'. MAAF would oppose an military promotion of religion or nontheist beliefs like atheism or Secular Humanism just as it does Christianity. That having been said, nontheists at Ft Bragg may request the opportunity to hold an event for themselves with no atheist "evangelical" purpose. The new Ft Bragg military group Military Atheists & Secular Humanists is planning an event titled Rock Beyond Belief. While any event held should not be a "me too" copy of this evangelical concert, nontheists do come together and local nontheists may accept the commanding general's offer to host a nontheistic, non-evangelical event that has none of the Constitutional complications of Rock the Fort.
As noted on the poster, the event will be free for both military members and civilians.

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