One hardly knows how to begin to react to Alan Cohick's recent letter ("The Proof," Jan. 22), but one has to begin somewhere, so I'll just make two points.
First, to write that "We have watched God or any reference to our Lord God, be stricken from every public situation, even our schools," Mr. Cohick must not have heard today's school children begin their school day by reciting the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag, which includes the phrase "one nation, under God." Nor could he have watched President Obama take the oath of office, ending with "so help me God" - a phrase, by the way, which is not included in the Constitutionally required oath. Nor could he have heard President Obama's inaugural address, which included five - five! - references to God.
Second, to write, as a veteran, that he " ... applaud[s] our sailors and soldiers today for tolerating and putting up with" the president, Mr Cohick must have forgotten the Oath of Enlistment taken by members of our military in which members of the military "do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God."
Doesn't that oath mean that our "sailors and soldiers" don't "tolerate" or "put up with" any particular president, but that they willingly and affirmatively commit themselves to obey the president's orders?
And, of course, that oath includes the pesky phrase "So help me God," putting the lie once again to Mr. Cohick's delusion that "any reference to our Lord God" has been "stricken from every public situation" - unless, of course, the members of our armed services don't take their oaths in public.
Lawrence F. Bassett
Submitted by Virtual Newsroom