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Application Of Church-State Separation Key To Marriage Equality Issue, Says Americans United

Group Says Supreme Court Should Reject Mixing Theology With Public Policy

The U.S. Supreme Court should extend marriage equality nationwide, says Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

The high court announced this afternoon that it will hear four consolidated cases challenging the constitutionality of same-sex marriage. The practice is now legal in 36 states.

Americans United Executive Director the Rev. Barry W. Lynn said it’s time for the court to make it clear that this issue won’t be settled on the basis of religion.
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Supreme Court Will Hear Ariz. Church Sign Case

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear a lawsuit over restrictions on church signs in Gilbert, Ariz.

Good News Presbyterian Church alleges that the town’s law, which forbids groups from placing advertising in public right-of-ways more than 12 hours before an event, is discriminatory. Currently, the law allows political signs to be posted 60 days before an election, and ideological signs may be posted indefinitely. Read more

Building Backlash

When the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its disastrous decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores June 30, millions of Americans expressed their anger. Religious Right leader Tim Wildmon was not among them. Read more

Good Outcome

When it comes to church-state separation, the news from the U.S. Supreme Court this year can hardly be called good.

On May 5, the high court gave its blessing to official prayers before meetings of municipal government – even if they’re mostly Christian. At the end of June, the justices ruled that certain closely held corporations can deny employees access to birth control in health-care plans if such coverage offends the owners’ religious beliefs. Read more

Supreme Court Right To Skip Wisc. Graduation-In-Church Case, Says Americans United

Appeals Court Said Public School Commencement Ceremonies Should Not Be Held In Religious Settings

 

Americans United for Separation of Church and State today hailed the U.S. Supreme Court’s announcement that it will not hear an appeal of a lower court’s ruling striking down a Wisconsin school district’s use of an evangelical megachurch to hold commencement ceremonies. Read more

Prisoners’ Plea Proscribed: High Court Limits Inmates’ Religious Liberty Lawsuits

The U.S. Supreme Court has let us down again this week.

The justices ruled 6-2 that prisoners cannot seek money damages from the state when their rights are violated under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA). The federal statute’s purpose, in part, is to protect prisoners’ rights to practice their religion. Read more

‘Faith-Based’ Fracas: Supreme Court Lets Taxpayer Challenge Go Forward In Kentucky

Americans United got some good news yesterday in a “faith-based” funding case that began back in 2000.

The lawsuit was brought on behalf of Alicia Pedreira and other Kentucky taxpayers against the Kentucky Baptist Homes for Children. Using millions in public funds, the sectarian childcare agency has been indoctrinating children in religious beliefs and discriminating on religious grounds in employment, firing Pedreira for being a lesbian. Read more

Access Denied: Supreme Court Slams The Courthouse Door In The Face Of Church-State Litigants

Thanks to yesterday’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, it will now be a lot easier for the government to fund religion.

The high court, in a 5-4 decision in Arizona Christian Tuition Organization v. Winn, ruled that taxpayers have no right to challenge tax credits, exemptions or deductions that support religious organizations. Read more

The Phelps Decision: Supreme Court Decision Undercuts Religious Right Lie

As I’m sure everyone knows by now, the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld the right of Westboro Baptist Church to picket near the funerals of soldiers who died while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In any writing about Westboro Baptist, it is important to immediately make it clear that the messages from Pastor Fred Phelps and his family are vile, obnoxious and disgusting. But, as the high court has made clear, even jerks have free-speech rights. Read more

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