Most people don't think of former House Speaker Newt Gingrich as a theologian. After all, he's best known for the slash-and-burn style of highly partisan politics that he unleashed in Washington during the presidency of Bill Clinton.
The official blog of Americans United for Separation of Church and State.
What a difference four years and $1.5 million makes!
On Feb. 20, 2001, TV preacher Pat Robertson expressed grave concerns about President George W. Bush's "faith-based" initiative. Addressing his "700 Club" audience, Robertson opined that the scheme could lead religious groups to become dependent on government handouts.
"[T]his thing could be a real Pandora's box," Robertson said. "And what seems to be such a great initiative can rise up to bite the organizations as well as the federal government. And I'm a little concerned about it, frankly."
Parents and students in California are ramping up their efforts to hold accountable a Religious Right group that last year accused public school officials of barring the Declaration of Independence from classrooms.
The treatment of prisoners in ongoing American military operations remains a source of deep ethical concern. In addition to the questions of torture and the application of established international law, recent revelations from the military prisons at Guantanamo Bay and elsewhere present important issues about the role of religion in the debate.
President George W. Bush's choice of Alberto Gonzales as attorney general has sparked debate in many quarters. While he is best known for his memos relating to torture and the Geneva Convention, his responses to questions from the Senate Judiciary Committee reveal a disturbing perspective on religious discrimination.
U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) seemed to warn America yesterday that we may be surprised and disappointed by the government that results from this Sunday's election in Iraq. The national assembly that will be elected this weekend is tasked with drafting a constitution for the new Iraqi state.
Lugar, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, asked that we steel ourselves for the result. "Now, from our standpoint, the United States' standpoint, we may or may not be pleased with the final results of the constitution," he said.
Having spent last year diligently supporting George W. Bush's reelection campaign, the Religious Right's political brigades expected that the president would remember them when shaping his second-term agenda.
As 2005 began, President Bush traveled across the country campaigning hard for his policy priorities. But as right-wing activists listened to his statements, they didn't hear what they had hoped for: somehow Social Security privatization had replaced a ban on gay marriage and abortion curbs as a top-tier agenda item.
James Dobson recently announced his discovery that another insidious homosexual media take-over is in the offing. Since Jerry Falwell famously outed Tinky Winky, the purple Teletubby, the trail had grown cold. Speaking at a black-tie dinner for members of Congress and political allies, Dobson revealed his epiphany with a simple question: "Does anyone here know SpongeBob?"
Two of the nation's leading newspapers, The New York Times and The Washington Post, have published strong editorials opposing the introduction of "intelligent design" creationism into public school science classes. The editorials focus, in part, on the lawsuit - brought by Americans United and the ACLU - challenging promotion of the religiously grounded concept in the Dover, Pa., schools.
'Tis the season for prospective candidates to start putting feelers out for elections to be held this year, next year or even for presidential races in the distant future. It is in this spirit that Ralph Reed is said to be seeking the job of Georgia lieutenant governor.
According to the Washington Times, "Associates say Mr. Reed, 43, whose picture first appeared on the cover of Time magazine nearly 10 years ago, hopes to use the lieutenant governor's job to position himself to run for Georgia governor."