"No Atheists in foxholes", eh?

A few weeks ago Katie Couric, the SDMB’s favorite talking head, repeated that hoary old chestnut on air. It seems Gid L. White, Master Sergeant, United States Army (Retired), wasn’t content to just roll his eyes and move on. He wrote her a letter. And Penn Jillette read it on his FreeFM radio show. I heard it there and emailed the show to see if a copy was available.

It seems I wasn’t alone in requesting a copy, so the show has posted the full text of Gid’s letter. I’ll quote a bit of it:

Thanks for that. I hadn’t heard it. I am all in favor of this and a big fan of Penn. I wonder if it had any success at all in penetrating the skull of Katie. I regret that it seems unlikely.

Haha. He takes himself a bit too seriously.

Hmm… I never took the line too seriously, and never in that sense that Penn seems to be rebutting: ie, ‘no atheist would ever sign up to serve his country.’

More like ‘war is so bad, even if you don’t really believe in God you’ll be praying for some higher power to save you.’ Which, if taken literally, is still a bit of a slight to the committed beliefs of some atheists, but not badly so compared to some other things you’d hear in jokes.

And, just because this topper seems a little apropos:

“…on the other hand, there aren’t very many worshippers in the charnel house.”