On June 17, Dylann Storm Roof walked into Charleston, S.C.’s Mother Emanuel AME Church. He sat there for an hour – quietly, by all accounts – and pulled out a handgun and opened fire. State Sen. Clementa Pinckney (D-Beaufort), Sharonda Singleton, Myra Thompson, Tywanza Sanders, Ethel Lance, Cynthia Hurd, Daniel Simmons, DePayne Middleton-Doctor and Susie Jackson are dead.
They are dead because Dylann Roof hated black people. Read more
Let’s say a legislator in your state came up with the bright idea to force everyone to pay a special tax to support “teachers of the Christian religion.” What would you do?
You’d probably fire up your computer and use social media and Twitter to mobilize opposition. You might start an online petition or lobby the legislature directly.
But if it were 1785, and you didn’t have any of those tools, you might just have to do what James Madison did – reach for a quill pen and write a broadside so powerful it would sink the idea. Read more
How far does the Religious Right intend to go with its argument that “religious freedom” shields Christians who refuse to serve entire groups of people? The recent case of a Maryland disc jockey who declined to provide his services for a gay man’s birthday party may offer some insight. Read more
Editor’s Note: The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2014-15 term is coming to a close, and a landmark ruling on marriage equality is pending. In light of that, “The Wall of Separation” asked AU’s Legal Department to examine the three possible outcomes in this case. In this blog post, Gregory Lipper, senior litigation counsel, and Matthew Russo, an AU legal intern, discuss what will likely happen if the high court extends marriage equality nationwide. Read more
Where Freedom Stands: Civil Liberties in Kansas Today
The Great Plains Chapter of Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the American Civil Liberties Union of Kansas are having a conversation about the status of civil liberties in the state and nation. They will celebrate recent victories, discuss what happened during the 2015 Kansas legislative session, get advice on priorities for the coming year, and share steps every Kansan can take to defend their freedoms. Read more
A Delaware State University (DSU) student claims she lost an athletic scholarship because she refused to attend her coach’s church. Natalia Mendieta filed suit against the university earlier this month.
What does rent control in New York City have to do with tax credits that would be used to support religious schools? Quite a bit, at least as far as New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is concerned.
In a move that can best be described as desperate, Cuomo initially tied together a piece of legislation that would renew expiring rent control laws with the creation of a new tuition tax credit program. Read more
Conventional wisdom holds that social issues won’t have much impact on the 2016 presidential election. Americans are more concerned about jobs and the economy, and besides, some recent polls show that Americans are less religious and moving to the left on social issues.
That’s the conventional wisdom. But there’s a problem – conventional wisdom can be, and often is, wrong. Read more