Tag: Ohio

May 13, 2020 / Podcast

In this episode we look at people who think their freedom includes spreading a virus that can kill people. Next we talk about the huge obstacle for Joe Biden to becoming the Democratic nominee in November and finally we talk about a congressional candidate who makes the stay-at-home protestors look like the establishment. We also have an update on the taxpayer bail out of churches.

May 13, 2019 / Anti-science
Ohio Rep. John Becker (R-65)

Rep. John Becker (R-65) claims to be Ohio’s most conservative legislator. He also claims to be ‘Pro-Life,’ Pro-Gun, and ‘Limited Government’, yet a recent anti-abortion bill he introduced shows Becker to not only not be pro-life or for limited government but also shows he isn’t very bright about basic biology. He’s made Ohio government even more of a laughing stock in the country and it passed a so-called ‘heartbeat’ bill.

May 13, 2016 / Courts
image of Former Ohio Governor George Voinovich poses in 1998 with the state seal and motto he had installed at the Statehouse
Former Ohio Governor George Voinovich poses in 1998 with the state seal and motto he had installed at the Statehouse

While cleaning out some old files, I came across a 1998 newspaper clipping that opposed the use of the Ohio state motto, ‘With God All Things Are Possible‘, as a lawn decoration at the statehouse. ACLU of Ohio v. Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board was the first separation of church and state case I followed closely. I published handcrafted web pages that included some thoughts about the case and the text of newspaper clippings from the time. Even 20 years later, the Ohio state motto is still religious.

Back in mid 90s, the Ohio Governor at the time, George Voinovich, had seen religious messages engraved onto government buildings while on a trade trip to India. He thought since the Ohio state house was getting a massive restoration at the time that it would be a good idea to engrave our religous state motto, ‘With God All Things Are Possible’, on the building.

April 26, 2016 / Entanglement
image of Religious Message wall sign similar to one seen in Genoa OH High School
Religious Message wall sign similar to one seen in Genoa OH High School

While watching local TV news on March 21st, during a story about a Genoa Ohio high school student who died in a traffic accident, the station reporter interviewed Cari Buehler, the high school principal, in front of a sign with an ‘inspirational’ message on it. Too bad it was a religious message. Now the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) is asking the school district to remove the sign.

The interview was on WTOL in Toledo, Ohio and the screencap below shows the religious sign.

March 22, 2016 / Entanglement
image of Ohio House of Represenatives in session
Ohio House of Represenatives in session. Photo by Joshua Rothaas Used with permission.

In Ohio, Substitute HB 425, also known as the Ohio Student Religious Liberties Act seems to codify rights in state law that public school students currently enjoy from the 1st amendment of the US Constitution and that have been affirmed through various court cases over the years. Why would a GOP majority seem to want to protect religious freedom for students? To give cover to discriminate and bully LGBT students of course.

A majority of the HB 425 just rehashes current legal precedents covering religious freedom in the public schools. As the Columbus Dispatch put it:

February 21, 2016 / Groups
created image showing Ohio State House rotunda

On February 10th I attended Secular Summit 4.0 at the Ohio State House in Columbus. It was hosted by CFI NE Ohio. It was the second lobby day I attended and this time I tried to as prepared as I could be to speak to my representatives. Secular people need to do more in person lobbying of our elected officials in addition to phone calls, written messages, and blog posts.

The Secular Summit is a chance for secular people around Ohio to get together for a morning meeting then in the afternoon we have appointments with our state representatives and senators.