In the U.S. Army band, if you don’t strike the right political notes, your musical abilities could be flat out discordant.
Master Sgt. Nathan Sommers, a 25-year veteran and decorated soloist, was given his walking papers on July 31 for his alleged disruptive religious and political beliefs, and filed a federal lawsuit the following day for reinstatement, back pay and full benefits.
His heinous crimes included serving Chick-fil-A at his promotion party, affixing a “NOBAMA” and Democrat-spoofing bumper stickes to his car, and reading too much Sean Hannity, David Limbaugh and Mark Levin, Fox News reported.
Retired Naval commander John Bennet Wells, Sommers’ attorney, termed his client a “true hero,” who upset his superiors because of his Christian conviction in traditional marriage and his conservative political beliefs.
“Those who protect our rights must be allowed to exercise them,” he said. “Master Sgt. Sommers did nothing to interfere with good order and discipline. He was the perfect soldier.”
Wells accused the U.S. Army Band Chorus, known as “Pershing’s Own,” of “betraying the core principles of the U.S. Army.”
He said that Congress had passed laws to protect the religious rights of soldiers and that the Army had violated them.
“I am certain that General ‘Black Jack’ Pershing, a true leader, is spinning in his grave at the actions taken by the organization that bears his name,” he commented.
While the Army took no action against soldiers who drove with pro-Obama bumper stickers, Sommers was ordered to remove his.
While reading a David Limbaugh book backstage before a performance, Sommers was harshly criticized for causing “unit disruption” and offending other soldiers.
And for serving Chick-fil-A at a party in honor of the repeal of “Don’t Ask – Don’t Tell,” he was admonished for disrespecting the president.
Trumped up charges like this pious flapdoodle led the Army’s Quality Management Panel to discharge Sommers on July 31, and Wells to rebuke them. “Just because someone joins the military, they do not give up their rights as a citizen,” he said.
Sommers first came under scrutiny for his conservative behavior in June of last year.
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