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Biblical Blunder: Proposed Mass. Religion Classes Could Violate First Amendment

Constitutional concerns plague a new bill that would mandate religious education in Massachusetts public schools.

The bill, sponsored by State Rep. Christopher Fallon, would create a mandatory class in Bible and international religions for “the purposes of teaching morality and brotherhood” to high school students.
Read more

Resuming The FEMA Fiasco: U.S. House Continues Effort To Rebuild Houses Of Worship Damaged By Hurricane Sandy

It has been one year since Hurricane Sandy ravaged parts of the East Coast, and lawmakers are still trying to hand taxpayer money to houses of worship to fix damage caused by the storm. Read more

Outrage Over Oath: Religious Right Objects To New Conscience Rules At Air Force Academy

In a shift toward inclusivity, the Air Force Academy has announced that cadets will no longer be required to recite “So help me God” as part of the school’s Honor Oath. The decision followed a complaint by Mikey Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation. Read more

Motto Mania: Pa. Lawmaker Proposes Religious Statement For Public Schools

A Pennsylvania state legislator is pushing a bill that would require public schools in the state to post “In God We Trust” signs – but he insists religion has nothing to do with it.

Rep. Rick Saccone (R-Allegheny/Washington) says he merely wants to honor the anniversary of the first appearance of “In God We Trust” on coins, which occurred 150 years ago. Read more

Poor Prayer Proposal: Utah Legislator Pushes Unnecessary ‘Religious Liberties’ Bill

A Utah legislator seems to have forgotten about the U.S. Constitution and decades of judicial jurisprudence. State Sen. Todd Weiler (R-Woods Cross), is currently working on an unnecessary bill that introduces redundant or dangerous provisions regarding religious freedom for students in public schools. Read more

Retreating Or Repositioning?: Southern Baptists And The ‘Culture War’

When the Religious Right started to become a prominent force in American politics in the late 1970s, its advocates had a major impact on the country’s largest Protestant denomination: the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC).

Younger readers may be surprised to read that the SBC, which claims 16 million members, used to be fairly moderate on social issues. It strongly supported the separation of church and state, citing historical Baptist leaders like John Leland and Isaac Backus. Read more

Publicly Funded Presidential Prayers?: Former ‘Faith-Based’ Office Director Releases Book Of Daily Devotionals

If you’ve ever wondered about the spiritual life of President Obama (and I bet you have), the former head of his Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships has a real treat for you in his new book of daily devotionals. Read more

Extremism Expunged: In Kansas, A Religious Right Hero Gets His Comeuppance

At the Religious Right’s recent Values Voter Summit, Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange talked about how far-right attorneys general can undermine progressive policies in the states and promote extreme conservatism.

Strange might want to consult with a guy name Phill Kline before going too far with that.

Kline was Kansas’ attorney general from 2003-2007 and later district attorney in Johnson County. An extreme fundamentalist, he decided to spend much of his time harassing abortion providers. Read more

Everything Old Is New Again: Culture Warriors Seek Flock Of Young Recruits

The rhetoric offered at last weekend’s Values Voters Summit confirmed an Orwellian truth: The Religious Right has always been at war with Eastasia. Its manufactured culture war remains at the heart of its message – and it needs young people to take up the fight.

Viewed through this militant lens, the Religious Right’s fixation on the young makes sense. Armies recruit, and lately, recruitment is down. They're losing the younger generation. Read more

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