First Liberty Institute is taking on the United States Army for banning a small business from using the military logo on their Christian merchandise.
After the Army told Shields of Strength, the faith-based accessory company, “You are not authorized to put biblical verses on your Army products,” First Liberty’s Michael Berry responded in defense of the small business.
“These are not the government-issued dog tags, these are replica dog tags,” Berry said during a recent interview with The Todd Starnes Show. “The government can’t discriminate against people and private businesses … on the basis of religion.”
“That’s blatant discrimination and it’s unconstitutional,” he told Starnes.
The battle was instigated by Mikey Weinstein, the notorious leader of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation. The MRFF is known for its efforts to eradicate Christianity from the military.
Weinstein claims the Shield of Strength dog tags contradict “separation of church and state.”
“I had no idea that all it would take to bring the Army to its knees was a little complaint from Mikey Weinstein,” Berry told Starnes. Listen to the full interview here.
While Berry recognizes that “the Army is the one that gets to control its licenses and its trademarks,” he added that “there’s another rule called the U.S. Constitution, and the First Amendment.”
“This is just a despicable cowardly act, really a publicity stunt, by Mikey Weinstein,” Berry told Starnes.
Berry, a Marine Corps veteran, fired off a letter calling for the Army to reverse its decision.
“Your directive that SoS remove all Biblical references from its Army-licensed products is unconstitutional and violates RFRA,” he wrote.
Berry believes religion and the United States military have long overlapped: “We had chaplains serving with the Continental Army … and we’ve had chaplains ever since then.”
“Nobody who puts their life on the line defending our freedoms should not be able to enjoy those freedoms themselves,” Berry told Fox News. “We will not stop fighting for [Shields of Strength].”