Arizona State Sen. Sylvia Allen (R-Snowflake), a creationist, has been named chairwoman of the Senate Education Committee. Senate President Andy Biggs (R-Gilbert) appointed her late last December.
According to the Arizona Republic, Allen is a controversial figure in the legislature. The senator, who is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, said in 2009 that she believes God created the world 6,000 years prior.
In 2013, she used her public Facebook page to posit that the government had released poisonous chemtrails over her constituency. Read more
Rob Hudelson, a member of the Coolidge, Ariz., City Council, has strong opinions about the role of Christianity in government.
“I think it’s very important,” Hudelson said during a September council meeting. “We just proclaimed Constitution Week. You know what was said at the end of the [Revolutionary] War? A treaty in Paris that said, ‘In the name of the most holy and undivided Trinity.’ You don’t get that from the Quran. You get it from the Bible. You get it from Christianity. That’s our heritage.” Read more
Americans United recently sent a warning letter to an Arizona public charter school, telling officials there to stop assigning a textbook that promotes religion to students in government classes.
In a letter sent Aug. 28 to officials at Heritage Academy in Mesa, Americans United explained that a text used in the school’s mandatory senior government/U.S. Constitution class teaches students religious beliefs such as divine creation of all things, divine judgment after death and the Ten Commandments. Read more
An Indiana woman alleges that a police officer interrogated her about her religious views after pulling her over for a traffic violation. Ellen Bogan says Trooper Brian Hamilton of the State Police used the stop as an opportunity to ask her if she’d accepted Jesus Christ as her personal savior. Read more
The school year’s begun and debates over sex education have already spilled into school board meetings across the country. In Arizona, officials in the Tempe Union High School district are attempting to insert dogmatic views into a sex education course to be launched this fall.
It may seem like a dispatch from the Jim Crow era, but a recent poll shows that some Americans still believe business owners have a religious freedom right to discriminate against customers based on their race. Read more
The Religious Right continues to push for a religion-based freedom to discriminate in state after state, but there are signs they’re losing the battle.
Arizona’s infamous ‘religious freedom’ bill, which would grant religious business owners the right to refuse service to LGBT people (or others they deem unsuitable), is quickly losing what little public support it enjoyed. Members of the business community say the bill, which is currently awaiting Gov. Jan Brewer’s signature, would actually hurt business.