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Sign Of The Times: ‘Hell Is Real’ Billboard May Cost Kentucky Its Federal Funds

Some Kentucky legislators seem to have a thing about church-state relations.

If the Bluegrass State’s lawmakers aren’t busy pushing for Ten Commandments displays on public land or advocating for the Bible to be taught in public schools, they’re looking for other ways to give religion a little governmental help.

The legislature’s latest debacle involves an aggressive effort to keep a “Hell is real” billboard standing beside a major interstate highway.

Stacked Deck: Truth Is Not In The Cards For Liberty Counsel’s ‘Adopt-a-Liberal’ Collection

My “Adopt-a-Liberal” cards have arrived!

I’m almost ashamed to admit this, but I spent some of my hard-earned cash on a set of 51 trading cards of famous liberals produced by Liberty Counsel, a Religious Right legal outfit associated with the the late Jerry Falwell’s empire. (The Counsel wants us to pick one or more of the subjects of these cards and pray for their conversion to religious and political rectitude – as the Falwellian Big Brothers define it.)

Heritage Of Shame: Right-Wing Foundation Exploits Poor D.C. Kids

Every morning, I pass through Union Station, a majestic restored train station, on my way to work at Americans United.

Union Station contains a stop for the Washington, D.C., subway, the Metro. Lately, I’ve noticed huge posters plastered all over the station walls. They depict pictures of smiling (mostly minority) children demanding to know why Congress won’t give them “scholarships” to attend private schools.

Waiting For God’s Endorsement?: The ADF’s Endgame Is Church-Based Political Power

Samuel Beckett, one of my favorite writers, had a lot to say about human nature and the inevitable repetition of inane life experiences. In Waiting for Godot, Krapp’s Last Tape and Endgame, the protagonists in Beckett’s most famous pieces are static creatures of habit; each repeats the same stale cycle of events, expecting a variation in circumstance. But invariably, each play ends almost exactly where it begins.

Dutch Treat: AU Helps Netherlands Newspaper Kick CAN Over Anti-Gay Extremism

Yesterday I received an interesting call from a reporter in the Netherlands. He was seeking information on an American Religious Right outfit called the Christian Action Network (CAN).

CAN is not a major player in the world of the Religious Right, but I am familiar with the Forest, Va.-based group. It’s pretty low-rent, a point I made clear in my 2000 book Close Encounters with the Religious Right.

Bah, Humbug: Florida City’s Holiday Policy Raises Church-State Concerns

From now on, only “legal” religions will be officially recognized in North Miami Beach – at least, that will be the case if the city council’s multicultural committee has its way.

According to the Miami Herald, the committee recommended that the council recognize one main holiday for every religion in the form of an official proclamation. It’s part of the city’s effort to be “fair” and “inclusive.”

Ave Church-State Separation!: Supreme Court Rejects High School Religious Music Case

The U.S. Supreme Court this morning declined to hear a case from Washington state concerning a young woman who wanted to play religious music during a public school graduation ceremony.

Kathryn Nurre was a senior at Mill Creek’s Henry M. Jackson High School in 2006 when she and other members of a school wind ensemble sought permission to play “Ave Maria” during graduation.

Florida Flim-Flam: ‘Inspirational Message’ Bill Is Attack On Church-State Separation

Ten years ago, the Santa Fe (Texas) Independent School District was just another American town that loved its high school football team. On Friday evenings, students congregated in metal bleachers to cheer for their friends, parents attended with camcorders and warm coffee in gloved hands, and full recaps of exciting games were printed in the local papers.

Happy Birthday, Pat!: Virginia Legislature Lauds Extremist TV Preacher Robertson

TV evangelist Pat Robertson’s 80th birthday is on Monday, and to mark that momentous occasion, the Virginia legislature decided to pass a resolution lauding him a great American, visionary leader and all-around swell fellow.

The resolution is full of the “whereases” and flowery language that are common in this type of thing. It lauds Robertson’s creation of the Christian Broadcasting Network, Regent University, the American Center for Law and Justice and the Christian Coalition.

HB 31: School Prayer Strikes Back in Florida

On Tuesday morning, I found out that a hearing was scheduled for Wednesday morning on a school prayer bill in the Florida House PreK-12 Education Policy Committee.  This bill has been around for a number of years, and thankfully, hasn’t been passed by the legislature.

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