Tag Archives: 1st amendment

White Evangelicals Gave Us Trump Because They Are Afraid Of Equality

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Christians hate youA recent post-election poll showed that white evangelical Christians are way outside the views of a majority of Americans on a lot of issues. For people interested in keeping the church and state separate, it really isn’t a surprise. How far white evangelicals are outside the majority points to one tough obstacle seculars face – white evangelicals confuse the loss of cultural dominance with oppression. Demanding a level playing field doesn’t take away from people who already have the privilege of sitting at the table.
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Religious Conservative Think Tank Believes In Forcing Religion In Public Schools

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image of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos who has ties to shadowy religious conservative group
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos has ties to shadowy religious conservative group

The Washington Post reported on a ‘secret’ conservative think-tank that has for years wanted to eliminate the US Department of Education and force the Christian religion into the public schools. The report uncovered by the Post and the fact that many members of the group are involved in the present Trump administration should give us supporters of secular education some pause.
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A Presidential Candidate Panders To The Religious Using The Johnson Amendment

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Official image of President Lyndon B. Johnson in the 1950s as a US Senator
President Lyndon B. Johnson in the 1950s as a US Senator

Every election cycle, Secular Americans have to endure slimy pandering to the religious right by candidates looking to get elected to office. Some on the right of the political spectrum want to see the Johnson Amendment repealed so that churches are free to be involved in politics as much as they want. As it stands now, promises for repealing the law is pandering because it is hardly enforced and it can’t get a repeal vote now in a Congress with a Republican majority.
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Subtle Violations Of The First Amendment May Still Be Found In Public Schools

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image of a young girl praying from freeimages.comObvious violations of the first amendment in public schools can include a sign with an obvious religious message, a teacher proselytizing, or a school promoted event sponsored by a religious group that includes a sermon or prayer. There are, however, many smaller violations going on all the time that might be harder to see or stop. It takes all of us, checking into our local schools, to police these minor violations and to educate people about the 1st amendment.
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Richmond Mayor Thinks Questioning City Relationship With His Church Is Against Separation Of Church & State

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offical photo of Richmond, Va Mayor Dwight C. Jones
Richmond, Va Mayor Dwight C. Jones

Richmond, Virginia Mayor Dwight C. Jones has a problem. According to news reports, it seems that work done for the church he heads was done by vendors and contractors that also do business for the city and it looks like at least one city employee used city time and e-mail to oversee construction at the church on behalf of the Mayor. The appearance of irregularity is something that needs to be investigated but the Mayor believes the scrutiny is a violation of the separation of church and state. You can’t use the 1st amendment to block an ethics investigation.
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Ohio House Speaker Cuts Off Prayer For Wrong Reason

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screencap of Pastor B.J. Van Aman, Rep. Tim Schaffer, R-Lancaster, and Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger, R-Clarksville with head bowed in prayer
Pastor B.J. Van Aman of the Pickerington Baptist Temple, Rep. Tim Schaffer, R-Lancaster, and Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger, R-Clarksville with head bowed in prayer in the Ohio House of Representatives on Tuesday January 26, 2016

Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger (R) cut off the opening prayer, in the Ohio House of Representatives, Tuesday, after it went past 5 minutes in length. In reviewing the rules for a prayer opening the legislature, it’s clear the prayer should have been stopped much sooner for violating court advised guidelines and not just for length.
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