TV preacher Pat Robertson's top lawyer, Jay Sekulow, is all atwitter because a minority religious group wants equal treatment from a local government in Utah. The group, called Summum, wants to erect a monument bearing its "Seven Aphorisms" near a Ten Commandments display in a local park. Read more
You have to give the creationists credit: When the courts knock down one of their schemes for sneaking the Book of Genesis into the public schools, they come right back with another one. You might say their strategies evolve.
Here's a case in point: Louisiana has seen numerous attempts to bring creationism into public schools. It was a Louisiana law that mandated "balanced treatment" between evolution and creationism that the Supreme Court struck down in 1987's Edwards v. Aguillard. Read more
Milwaukee's school voucher program has been in the news a lot lately. A recent study by the University of Arkansas showed voucher students fare no better academically than their peers in the city's "failing" public schools. (Voucher students in Catholic schools, in particular, perform dismally in mathematics.) Read more
Part of my job involves reading Religious Right fund-raising mail and newsletters. It's like stepping into some Bizarro World where up is down, black is white, and truth is determined not by factual evidence but by whatever the Maximum Leader says.
The Family Research Council's Washington Watch is a good example of this. It's always entertaining.
"How FRC Is Fighting Tax-Funded Atheism in Schools," blared the envelope of a recent mailing. As I opened it, I thought to myself, "I'll bet this is about evolution." Read more
Do you have your free tickets to the national simulcast of "Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Separation of Church and State...but Were Afraid to Ask!" yet?
If not, you better hurry! The event is just two days away and tickets are going fast. Thirty-seven theaters (up from the original 25) nationwide will run the simulcast this Wednesday evening.
Did I mention that's just two days from today? Read more
It's a fairly tired truism that when government gets involved in the business of prayer, bad things are bound to happen.
Yet government meddling in religion never seems to be a thing of the past. Over and over again, we witness legislatures interfering in what ought to be private matters about prayer. At some point in time, sooner, rather than later I would hope, it would be a great relief if lawmakers at every level from coast to coast were to get a clue and quit playing the religion card. Read more
Last year Americans United sent a letter to the Pennsylvania Senate, asking the leadership to revise that body's prayer policy. Like a lot of government bodies, the state Senate opens with a prayer, often one delivered by a guest minister.
AU had received complaints from Keystone State residents who noticed that the prayers were almost always Christian. We asked the members of the Senate to use non-sectarian prayers instead, noting that the Supreme Court has allowed these types of prayers before meetings of government bodies but not sectarian ones. Read more