WASHINGTON, DC -- Family Research Council (FRC) and American Family Association (AFA) today delivered a petition with 77,024 signatures to the Pentagon in support of Colonel Leland Bohannon. After a decades-long career with the Air Force, Col. Bohannon’s superior suspended him from command, withheld his decoration, and submitted a letter to the Air Force Brigadier General promotion board recommending that he not be promoted because he sought a religious accommodation exempting him from having to sign a "certificate of spouse appreciation" for an airman in a same-sex marriage.
The petition asks Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson to fully reverse the complaint against Colonel Bohannon and remove any indication of it from his record. A letter signed by a coalition of 31 religious liberty advocacy groups also asks the Air Force Secretary to correct Air Force policy to ensure this does not happen again.
Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jerry Boykin, Family Research Council's executive vice president, made the following comments shortly after delivering the petitions:
“Like a lot of service members, Colonel Bohannon had reason to be encouraged when President Trump signed the executive order protecting religious freedom. But that same May, he found out the hard way that not everyone in the military had gotten the memo. Instead of encouraging faith, Air Force officials were continuing the Obama policy of punishing it. But now, over 77,000 Americans have joined together in this petition to say they will not stand for service members being punished and driven out simply for living in accordance with their religious beliefs.
“We not only delivered petitions, we delivered a message – we will not back down from defending the religious liberty of those in the military. The action taken against Colonel Bohannon is unacceptable, and Air Force policy must be corrected to ensure this does not happen again. In addition, the complaint against Col. Bohannon needs to be reversed and removed from his record,” concluded Boykin.
To read the petition from FRC, click here: https://frc.quorum.us/campaign/5581/
To read the petition from AFA, click here: https://www.afa.net/activism/action-alerts/2017/11/tell-air-force-secretary-to-end-religious-discrimination/
To read the letter signed by 31 religious liberty advocacy groups: http://downloads.frc.org/EF/EF17L15.pdf
Colonel Bohannon is legally represented by the First Liberty Institute which is dedicated to protecting religious liberty for all Americans.