Category Archives: Politics

Couple Of Proposed Ohio Laws Give Students Cover For Religiously Based Bigotry

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Outline of State of Ohio with a Latin Cross on topSince I’ve started working with the Secular Coalition for Ohio, I’ve been getting updates on proposed laws in the Ohio legislature that could be at odds with the separation of church and state. House Bills 303 and 304 were referred to committee in October and if passed by the Republican controlled state house, each would give students in public schools cover for religiously based bigotry not normally allowed.
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Help The Secular Coalition For Ohio

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logo for the Secular Coalition For OhioThe Secular Coalition For America (SCA) is a 501(c)(4) advocacy organization that lobbies our elected officials in Washington and now they want to expand into Ohio to cover state and local political issues of interest to secular Ohioans. I have volunteered as co-chair to form the Ohio chapter. We need your help.
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Report Shows Christian Persecution Is A Myth

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created clipart showing Church welfare courtesy of US TaxpayersWe hear all the time from Christian conservatives, in the US, that they are being persecuted in some way like the fake ‘war on Christmas’ or the new rules requiring businesses to cover contraceptives for their employees. We seculars have always known that such claims of persecution were false and now a report from the Council for Secular Humanism and University of Tampa offers proof that most religious groups aren’t doing charitable work and taxpayers are in fact propping up some of them with tax subsidies.
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The Price For Getting Political Should Cost Churches $82.5 Billion

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photo of a church serviceChurches get tax exemptions yet some want to get more involved in politics without losing those exemptions. Tax exemptions were a way of promoting the separation of church and state by limiting the influence of government on religion – a government might try to influence what a church supports or teaches by using the tax rates for example. The cost of this protection also limits how involved a church can get in politics. Some on the religious right want to remove those limits of involvement and I think if they do get those restricts removed they should then pay taxes. It is only fair, right?
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Heartbeat Bill Returns In Ohio

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photo of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar
Quiverfull proponents Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar as props at the heartbeat bill press conference

In 2012, anti-choice groups got a heartbeat bill introduced in the Ohio legislature in an attempt to make abortion technically illegal. The bill was passed in the Ohio House but died in the Senate. This week the heartbeat bill was reintroduced by the same man who introduced it in 2012, Republican state Rep. Lynn Wachtmann of Napoleon. This time they used the celebrity Quiverfull proponents The Duggar Family as props at the press conference. Even after Ohio just enacted some of the most restrictive regulations on abortion in the country, the forced-birth people are back again for more restrictions.
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Obama Administration Says Prayers Before Town Council Meetings Are Okay

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photo of people praying before a meeting
Praying before a meeting

Town of Greece v. Galloway is a US Supreme Court case to heard in the fall that might set the boundaries for prayers before town council meetings so they aren’t a violation of the separation of church and state. One interesting thing to come out of the pre-hearing filings is that the Obama administration is supporting the prayers. I really never knew why it was so important for an elected body to pray before working since prayers don’t make elected officials do a better job nor do the prayers improve living in a certain town or county. As one church state group put it, a town council meeting ‘isn’t a church service and it shouldn’t seem like one.’
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