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The official blog of Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Ignorance Is Bliss?: Del. Pastor Proposes Excluding LGBT Definitions From Textbooks

Delaware’s Indian River School District (IRSD) is prepared to vote on new health textbooks this month. And if board member Shaun Fink gets his way, the books will exclude any mention of LGBT individuals. He’s also proposed excluding lessons on HIV/AIDS and contraception in favor of promoting an abstinence-only approach to sex education.
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Angered By Atheists: Fla. City Commissioners Walk Out During Secular Invocation

Governments – particularly those of the local variety – are supposed to be inclusive toward all citizens they serve. But some members of a Florida city council are clearly unaware of this responsibility, since they felt it was appropriate to walk out of a recent meeting right before an atheist was to deliver a message. Read more

Boot These Bigoted Bans: Movement Seeks To Remove Anti-Atheist Bias From State Constitutions

Eight states still have provisions in their constitutions that either bar atheists outright from holding public office or require people to believe certain things about God and religion before they can be elected.

These provisions can’t be enforced. They were declared invalid by the U.S. Supreme Court in a 1961 ruling in the case of Torcaso v. Watkins. Yet they linger on, a testament to the bigotry of bygone days. Read more

Creationist Canard: Judge Tosses Lawsuit That Claims Evolution Is A ‘Religious’ Viewpoint Unfit For Public Schools

It seems creationists are running out of ways to undermine evolution after a federal judge tossed a lawsuit that had sought to ban evolution from public school classrooms on the grounds that it promotes atheism. Read more

Georgia Justice?: City Officials Grant Special Zoning Exemptions To A Church But Reject A Mosque

A Georgia city council has rejected a zoning request for a mosque, despite previously approving a similar request for a Christian church.

The Kennesaw City Council voted 4-1 to deny the Suffa Dawat congregation a permit for a storefront worship space. Council members cited concerns about traffic, but congregants argued that the space would have simply acted as a temporary home during the construction of a permanent mosque. Read more

Soviet Smear: Santorum Spreads Old Lie Linking Church-State Separation To Communism

Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) once said of himself and his Religious Right allies: “We will never have the elite, smart people on our side….” After Santorum’s recent comments about church-state separation, it’s not hard to see why. During a conference call with members of extremist pastor (and failed Virginia political candidate) E.W. Read more

Unsuccessful Maneuvers: Ex-Navy Chaplain’s Latest Lawsuit Fails

For the past few years, Americans United has been sparring on and off with a former Navy chaplain named Gordon James Klingenschmitt.

Klingenschmitt first came to our attention when he insisted that he had a right to pray in Jesus’ name at official events, even though his superiors had urged him to use more inclusive invocations. Read more

Retaining The Towel: The Religious Right Hasn’t Given Up On Same-Sex Marriage Just Yet

Is the Religious Right ready to give up on same-sex marriage? At least one observer thinks so.

Damon Linker, writing in This Week, cites a short article that appeared in the conservative journal First Things recently as evidence of some kind of turning point in how theocratic groups deal with same-sex marriage. Read more

Thanksgiving: What I'm Thankful For – Besides The Turkey And Dressing

Editor's Note: This post originally ran on Thanksgiving Day 2007. It was written by Joe Conn, Americans United's former director of communications. Joe, who retired in July of 2013 after a remarkable 33 years of service to AU, makes the case for being thankful for the church-state wall. Happy Thanksgiving!

When you sit down to your Thanksgiving dinner today, do you plan to say grace? Read more

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