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No Compassion: Far-Right Catholic Group Gloats Over Defeat Of Bill To Help Victims Of Clerical Abuse

A few days ago, I receive the July-August issue of Catalyst, the newsletter of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights.

If you’re not familiar with the Catholic League, it’s a right-wing outfit that exists mainly to scream loudly anytime anyone anywhere dares to criticize the clerical leaders in the Catholic Church or the political goals of the bishops. The group, based in New York City, is run by William Donohue, a man who, when it comes to the issue of sexual abuse of minors by priests, is either deliberately provocative or remarkably tone deaf.

Expansion Of Statute Of Limitations Fails In N.Y.

The New York Senate failed to vote on a bill that would have expanded the statute of limitations for reporting child sexual abuse.

The Child Victims Act would have eliminated the criminal statute of limitations for several types of sex crimes against children and allowed victims a one-year window during which they could pursue civil suits against perpetrators.

State senators voted 30-29 on May 23 to prevent the bill from coming to a vote.

The Curious Case Of Kiryas Joel

Editor’s Note: Louis Grumet is former executive director of the New York State School Boards Association. In 1994, Grumet served as plaintiff in an important church-state case called Board of Education of Kiryas Joel Village School District v. Grumet that reached the U.S. Supreme Court. Grumet and his co-author, John Caher, have just released a book about the legal challenge titled The Curious Case of Kiryas Joel: The Rise Of A Village Theocracy And The Battle To Defend The Separation Of Church And State (Chicago Review Press).

Unfriendly Skies: American Airlines Accused Of Discriminating Against Muslim And Sikh Passengers

Religion-based discrimination takes many forms in modern America. Often it looks like a county clerk who won’t give a marriage license to a same-sex couple. Other times, it looks like three Muslims and one Sikh getting booted from a flight because they allegedly made passengers and crew “uneasy.”

N.Y. Governor Pushes School Tax Credit Plan

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has announced that he intends to push a tax-credit program that would subsidize tuition at private schools. Under the proposed scheme, taxpayers would receive a cut by donating directly to private school scholarship funds.

The measure has been criticized as a neo-voucher program. Cuomo has been campaigning for it in synagogues and churches, and leaders of the Catholic Church have indicated support for the scheme.

‘Choice’ Charade: N.Y. Governor Slams ‘Manhattan Liberals’ For Supporting Church-State Separation In Neo-Voucher Battle

What does rent control in New York City have to do with tax credits that would be used to support religious schools? Quite a bit, at least as far as New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is concerned.

In a move that can best be described as desperate, Cuomo initially tied together a piece of legislation that would renew expiring rent control laws with the creation of a new tuition tax credit program.

State Officials Examine N.Y. School District Run By Orthodox Jews

For years, a New York community’s public school system has been drained of resources by school board members who are more interested in assisting sectarian institutions than in improving public education. But thanks to complaints from angry residents, the state has finally assigned a financial monitor to oversee the board’s activities.

School Swindle: N.Y. Board Makes Private Education Its Top Priority

A New York community provides a frightening example of what can happen when sectarian interests that don’t really care about public education gain control of taxpayer-funded schools that are meant to serve all.

The controversy centers on the East Ramapo Central School District in Rockland County. The area is home to a large concentration of Orthodox Jews, and they dominate the local school board. Seven of the board's nine members are Orthodox men.

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