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Separation of Church and State

Momentum And Inertia: Twin Threats To The Separation Of Church And State

Rev. Barry Lynn | Posted 02.17.2014 | Religion
Rev. Barry Lynn

Today, we have two main problems related to separation of church and state. To borrow from physics, one relates to momentum, the other to inertia.

How About a Saturnalia Display?

Chris Weigant | Posted 02.17.2014 | Politics
Chris Weigant

There are only two valid choices for a secular government agency to make, constitutionally, when it comes to allowing religious displays on its property: Allow everyone in, or allow nobody to erect such displays. What the Constitution forbids is playing favorites.

Baby Jesus and the Beer Pole?

Victor M. Feraru | Posted 02.17.2014 | Politics
Victor M. Feraru

It was six feet from the Nativity scene erected on government-owned property that three wise men appeared: a political blogger, an attorney, and a local pornography producer. They left behind a Festivus pole made of empty beer cans.

Baby Jesus: Not Welcome Here

Cheryl Moch | Posted 02.16.2014 | Religion
Cheryl Moch

I can admire your trees and your lights in this dark season and your Santa with his merry laugh. But it all gets too serious when I see that manger with its empty cradle waiting for the birth of a baby whose horrible death will be blamed on me.

Hindus Seize Opportunity For Statue On Oklahoma Capitol Steps

Religion News Service | Greg Horton | Posted 01.25.2014 | Religion

OKLAHOMA CITY (RNS) A few days after a group of Satanists announced plans to donate a memorial on the grounds of the Oklahoma Capitol, a Hindu organiz...

The Perils of Religious Politicking

Peter Montgomery | Posted 02.10.2014 | Politics
Peter Montgomery

Sen. Mark Pryor's ad is a cautionary tale about the fact that, as he himself has said, the intersection of faith and politics can be difficult to navigate. It can come across as saying, "vote for me because I'm a Christian," a message that fails to respect America's constitutional ideals and growing religious pluralism.

This School Science Lesson Contains A Very Religious Message

The Huffington Post | Rebecca Klein | Posted 12.04.2013 | Politics

Well, this doesn’t look like accurate science to us. Reddit user Dtooth0 posted the above photo on the site’s “WTF” thread Tuesday morn...

Thanksgivukkah Foretold in Talmud Over 2000 Years Ago

Salvador Litvak | Posted 01.27.2014 | Religion
Salvador Litvak

In our house, we'd like to cut out the presents entirely, but we don't want our kids to associate being Jewish with getting ripped off, so we compromise with books.

Being Good for Goodness' Sake: Why Operation Christmas Child Is Wrong

Roy Speckhardt | Posted 01.26.2014 | Politics
Roy Speckhardt

Rather than giving because it's the right thing to do, these charities give aid in exchange for religious conversion.

Let Us Pray

Jonathan Richards | Posted 01.26.2014 | Politics
Jonathan Richards

...

Ronald Reagan's Son Records Atheist Radio Ad: 'Not Afraid Of Burning In Hell'

The Huffington Post | Shadee Ashtari | Posted 11.27.2013 | Politics

Ron Reagan, the son of former President Ronald Reagan, has recorded a radio ad promoting the Freedom From Religion Foundation. The ad has been running...

Tax-Free Housing For Clergy Struck Down By Court

Religion News Service | Sarah Pulliam Bailey | Posted 11.25.2013 | Religion

(RNS) A federal judge has ruled that an Internal Revenue Service exemption that allows clergy to shield a portion of their salary from federal income ...

Christian Football in Nebraska

David Moshman | Posted 01.23.2014 | College
David Moshman

Contrary to Coach Brown's expansive claims about the rights of professors, UNL faculty do not have a right to indoctrinate students in their religious (or anti-religious) views. Faculty are hired to teach and do research in philosophy, chemistry, engineering, and other subjects, and this is what they do.

Separate Church From State and Guarantee Religious Liberty

Tom Carpenter | Posted 01.23.2014 | Religion
Tom Carpenter

Does anyone really think hard line conservative faith groups, and their influential religious leaders, would embrace such common sense steps, and willingly give up their power and authority to sanction civil marriage?

A New Understanding of Legislative Prayer

Bruce Ledewitz | Posted 01.23.2014 | Politics
Bruce Ledewitz

The problem is, of course, that such prayers seem an obvious affront to the governmental neutrality toward religion that Supreme Court precedent interpreting the Establishment Clause of the first amendment requires.

The Problem With Public Prayer

Religion News Service | Lauren Markoe | Posted 11.07.2013 | Religion

WASHINGTON (RNS) The Supreme Court struggled Wednesday (Nov. 6) with a case that asks whether government bodies can open with prayers that some people...

Vietnam, JFK and Not Dying for the Pope

Reese Schonfeld | Posted 01.23.2014 | Politics
Reese Schonfeld

Moyar compares the Diems with the autocratic leaders in today's Middle East. I think the comparison is a good one. But there is one real difference; the Diems were Catholics and so was JFK.

Keeping Church at Arm's Length From State

Ted N.C. Wilson | Posted 01.23.2014 | Religion
Ted N.C. Wilson

There's a difference between government allowing certain actions with which we might disagree on moral grounds... as opposed to compelling them. That is the fine line that is religious liberty.

The Lies Used by Jay Sekulow to Defend an Oath Against Lying: An Open Letter to the Superintendent of the Air Force Academy

Chris Rodda | Posted 01.23.2014 | Politics
Chris Rodda

Optionally adding the words "so help me God" is, of course, anyone's right. These words, however, should not be a part of the official oath, where they inevitably lead to situations in which cadets are forced or coerced to say them.

New Jersey Cracks Down On Religion In Schools With New Ban

Star-Ledger | Jeff Goldman | Posted 10.30.2013 | Religion

BORDENTOWN, N.J. (RNS) Students won’t be allowed to sing religious holiday songs at winter concerts in a south-central New Jersey school district. ...

Pennsylvania Bill May Soon Put 'God' In The Classroom

The Huffington Post | Rebecca Klein | Posted 10.30.2013 | Politics

The words “In God We Trust” may soon be displayed in all Pennsylvania public schools. A Pennsylvania bill that would require the state’s scho...

What Quebec's Battle Over Religious Symbols Can Teach Americans About Church-State Separation

Rabbi Jordie Gerson | Posted 01.23.2014 | Religion
Rabbi Jordie Gerson

As post-9-11 Americans, we know all too well that there's often a thin line between the separation of church and state and the infringement of rights we would otherwise take for granted; it's not easy to preserve individual rights while protecting religious groups.

Atheists Celebrate 'Godless Constitution' Day

The Huffington Post | Nick Wing | Posted 09.17.2013 | Politics

Atheists commemorated the 226th anniversary of ratification of the U.S. Constitution on Tuesday by purchasing ads in various newspapers, calling atten...

Debunking David Barton's Jefferson Lies (Because They Still Need to Be Debunked)

Chris Rodda | Posted 11.16.2013 | Media
Chris Rodda

Over the last couple of weeks, I've seen a number of articles about pseudo-historian David Barton's "comeback." My first thought upon seeing these articles was "what comeback?"

West Point's Miracle on the Hudson

Michael L. (Mikey) Weinstein, Esq. | Posted 10.29.2013 | Politics
Michael L. (Mikey) Weinstein, Esq.

"The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong." - Mahatma Gandhi Ready for a good news story? As this letter of gratitude ...