Air Force Academy drops 'so help me God' from oath

Photo: Beverly&Pack via Flickr

The Air Force Academy has announced it will now be optional for cadets to recite "so help me God" at the end of its honor oath, The Air Force Times reports.

The change is in response to a complaint from the Military Religious Freedom Foundation.

Currently, those attending the academy pledge: "We will not lie, steal or cheat nor tolerate among us anyone who does. Furthermore, I resolve to do my duty and live honorably, so help me God."

“Here at the academy, we work to build a culture of dignity and respect, and that respect includes the ability of our cadets, airmen and civilian airmen to freely practice and exercise their religious preference — or not,” academy Superintendent Lt. Gen. Michelle Johnson tells The Air Force Times.

However, MRFF President Mikey Weinstein said the academy "took the cowardly route" and says its decision "creates a tremendous amount of unconstitutional turmoil."

Weinstein has pleged to bring a lawsuit against the academy if the religious language is not dropped entirely from the oath.