The Orange County chapter of Americans United for Separation of Church and State November 8th event will present Jere Lipps, a geologist, paleontologist and marine biologist who has studied the evolution and paleo-biology of marine organisms for decades. He will address the politics of climate change, which is yet another place where some would like public policy to be based on religious beliefs rather than science.
A group in Mississippi is collecting signatures for a ballot initiative to change the state constitution in several ways.
The proposal put forth by the Magnolia State Heritage Campaign is pretty wide-ranging and is being pitched as a way to protect “Southern” (read: pro-Confederate) culture. It contains 12 subsections. Read more
The Supreme Court in June handed down its verdict in Hobby Lobby v. Burwell, and, just as we feared, that ruling’s reverberations continue to be felt as the Religious Right adopts the cause of corporate religion. Now, Moody Theological Seminary in Chicago has introduced an initiative that appears directly inspired by the ruling – and motivated by a desire to encourage more business owners to introduce religion into secular workplaces.
Every other year during election season, Americans United reminds clergy nationwide to stay out of partisan politics.
Most religious leaders have no problem respecting the federal tax code’s prohibition against campaign intervention by houses of worship and other non-profits that are tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Read more
A recent Christianity Today column provides an evangelical argument for keeping public schools secular.
Author Caryn Rivadeneira, who identifies herself as a devout Christian, objects to the idea that public schools are devoid of prayer, and of God Himself. She argues that for believers, God is present everywhere. Read more
A local government in a conservative state recently made a surprising decision – it voted not to open its meetings with an official prayer.
The Ketchikan, Alaska, Gateway Borough Assembly voted this week not to incorporate official invocations into its meeting agenda by a count of 5-2.
Given the controversial nature of this issue, there was quite a bit of debate before the vote. KTOO News, an Alaska radio network, reported that 10 people spoke in favor of official prayer and eight against it. Read more
In a few weeks, Religious Right groups, aided and abetted by their allies at the Fox News Channel, will start their annual carping about the “war on Christmas.” But before that starts, we have to get through Halloween. Read more
Next month, Alabama voters will have an opportunity to weigh in on Amendment One, which would add a provision to the state constitution that ostensibly attempts to ban Islamic, or Sharia, law. It’s hardly the first bill of its kind. Last year, state legislatures in Florida, Missouri, North Carolina and Oklahoma debated similar measures; Missouri’s bill never made it past the governor’s desk. In the other states, the bills were limited to family law. Read more
As the November elections approach, it seems a second-tier advocacy group run by a disgraced Religious Right icon is gearing up to make a major impact.
Politico reported this week that Ralph Reed’s Faith & Freedom Coalition (FFC) is planning an all-out blitz in states like Colorado, Iowa, Arkansas, Kansas, Michigan, Louisiana and North Carolina in the hope that Republicans and can take control of the U.S. Senate. Read more