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Problematic Proclamation: Texas Mayor Declares 2014 ‘Year of the Bible’

Mayor Tom Hayden of Flower Mound, Texas, rang in the new year by with a controversial use of his public office: He declared 2014 to be the “Year of the Bible,” based on a “One Year Bible” program that divides Scripture readings into a daily format over 12 months.

In an interview with a local TV station, Hayden spoke bluntly about his motivation. “There's so much benevolence on helping your fellow person,” he told reporters.
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Thickening Pill Plot: Non-Profit Challenges To Birth Control Mandate See Mixed Results In Courts

The waning days of 2013 were a mixed bag for supporters of the Affordable Care Act’s birth control mandate, as courts took conflicting stances on whether or not religious non-profits must comply with the new requirement, which went into effect yesterday.   

Many observers are focused on the fate of secular, for-profit corporations, which claim that the mandate violates their religious liberty rights, a matter the U.S. Supreme Court will decide this year. Read more

A Little List: The Top Ten Church-State Stories Of 2013

It’s that time of year when people are compiling lists. So let’s look at the Top Ten Church-State Stories of 2013.

1. Greece, N.Y., prayer case argued before U.S. Supreme Court: An Americans United-sponsored lawsuit challenging legislative prayer in the city of Greece, N.Y., reached the Supreme Court. Read more

Presidential Piety: Obama’s Faith Is In The Public Eye Again

News that President Obama did not attend Christmas church services has reignited a public debate over the president’s true religious affiliation. The New York Times reports that in lieu of church, Obama celebrated the holiday by singing carols, opening presents with his family and greeting soldiers at a local military base in his birth state, Hawaii.
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Voucher Swamp: Audits Of Louisiana’s ‘School Choice’ Program Find Oversight Lacking, Desegregation Efforts Stalled

It seems that every objective report on Louisiana’s ever-expanding school voucher program exposes serious problems, and the latest audits are no exception.

A federal report released before Christmas by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) said Louisiana’s voucher program has increased segregation in at least 15 public schools. According to the report, those schools would have been more racially integrated had some students not left because they received vouchers. Read more

The Waltons' War On Public Education: Heirs Of Wal-Mart Founder Spend Millions Supporting School Vouchers

A lot of people don’t like Wal-Mart, and with good reason. The big-box retailer has been accused of paying unreasonably low wages, intimidating employees who complain about poor working conditions and even bribing foreign officials. Read more

Religious Freedom: The Greatest Gift Of All

Note: This blog post is a re-publication of an item that originally appeared on Christmas Day, 2007. Happy Holidays to all!

It's Christmas. Some Americans are observing this day by attending religious services, others are celebrating in a mostly secular fashion while still others aren't making note of it at all.

What could be better than to have the right to choose for yourself?

Push Back At Notre Dame: Federal Court Rejects University’s Attack On Contraceptive Access

If you’ve been following the news, you know that secular, for-profit corporations like Hobby Lobby have been challenging the contraceptive mandate that the Department of Health and Human Services has interpreted to be part of the Affordable Care Act. Read more

Duck Doofus: Reality TV Star’s Anti-Gay, Racist Ramblings Draw Support From Politicians Courting Religious Right

Quite a brouhaha erupted this week over homophobic comments made by Phil Robertson, head of the family that stars on A&E’s hit reality show “Duck Dynasty.” Now several politicians looking to court Religious Right voters are diving into the fray – in support of Robertson’s “religious liberty.” Read more

Christmas Stories: All Too Often, Religious Right Tales Of Holiday Horror Don’t Add Up

Earlier this week, FoxNews.com published a column by Religious Right attorney Kelly Shackelford accusing Americans United and other groups of ignoring the allegedly overwhelming evidence that there is a “war on Christmas.”

In his column, Shackelford mentioned several incidents that he insists are proof of this war. Let’s take a closer look at them, shall we? Read more

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