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God And Galileo: Why People Who Believe The Universe Should Revolve Around Their Religion Are Dangerous

Occasionally something I write for Church & State or on this blog will spur a reader to mail me a letter or send me an email thoughtfully pointing out to me why I’m all wet.

This happened a few years ago after I wrote an article about efforts by creationists to infiltrate public schools. A gentleman in Nebraska sent me a booklet that asserted that not only is the Earth young (a mere 6,000 years), it is also the center of the universe. Read more

Making Creationism Extinct: New Film Explores Dangers Of Anti-Evolutionism

Last week I took a vacation with my family in New Mexico, a state I had never visited before. We were all impressed with its incredible beauty and fascinating history.

One of the sites we visited was White Sands National Monument. This amazing desert park contains enormous dunes of sand as white as snow. It’s like visiting a vast, oceanless beach. Read more

Biological Warfare: Battles Under Way In Texas And Louisiana Over Science Education

It looks like Texas is due for another round of fussing and fighting over creationism in public schools.

The state Board of Education continues to be dominated by Religious Right zealots who refuse to accept modern science and seek to teach religiously based concepts in biology classes. (They also reject accepted history. Remember, these are the people who hired “Christian nation” propagandist David Barton to help rewrite their social studies standards.) Read more

Kern Spurned: Oklahoma Legislator’s Backdoor Creationism Bill Bounced

Oklahoma is one of the most religiously conservative states in the country. Fundamentalists have a strong political presence there, and “culture war” battles are common. This is the state, you’ll recall, that recently tried to ban Sharia law – even though no Muslims are attempting to impose it there.

It’s always a pleasant surprise, then, when Oklahoma legislators resist Religious Right pressure and do the right thing. And yesterday they did. Read more

Freshwater Fired: Ohio Teacher’s Classroom Crusade – Finally – Comes To An End

We’ve written several times about the antics of John Freshwater, an eighth-grade science teacher in Mount Vernon, Ohio, who was accused of teaching creationism and promoting religion in class.

It took a while, but there is good news to report: Freshwater has been fired. Read more

Dover Dividends: Five Years Later, AU Challenge To ‘Intelligent Design’ Helps Education Evolve

On Dec. 20, 2005, a federal judge in Pennsylvania struck down an ill-conceived plan to teach “intelligent design” in the public schools of the town of Dover. Read more

Reading, Writing And Respect: School Officials Should Resolve To Protect Students' Religious Freedom

Happy New Year! After a break for the holidays, I'm back at work here at Americans United. And, as far as I know, it's back to school for kids across the country today, too.

In an effort to make everyone's lives easier in 2010 – including students, parents, teachers and school officials – we'd like to start things off by asking all public school staff to make this a constitutionally sound new year and resolve to uphold the wall of separation between church and state. Read more

'Palin-tology': Have Former Alaska Governor's Views On Creationism Evolved?

I regard Sarah Palin's new book like I do the movie "New Moon" – I'm not the intended audience and I don't really care about it.

But the media keeps sticking the thing in my face. In the case of Palin's book, it has become obvious that I'm going to be forced to look at the train wreck even though I'd rather not.

So let's just plunge right in, shall we?

It turns out there's actually a church-state angle because release of the book has reopened questions about what Palin does (or does not) believe about evolution. Read more

School Daze: Religious Right Still Can't Grasp Separation Of Church And School

Yesterday, I took the day off to attend a special end-of-the-year event at my son's school: He and other members of his fifth-grade class wrote and illustrated stories, which they bound in books and read aloud to visiting parents.

As I surveyed the classroom full of eager students and proud parents, I couldn't help but be struck by the diversity. All races were represented, and several kids mentioned being born in other countries. Read more

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