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The official blog of Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Remembering Vashti’s Victory: McCollum Decision Is Landmark Of Liberty

Sixty-two years ago today, the U.S. Supreme Court held that “released time,” a program whereby public schools set aside class time for on-campus religious instruction, violated the constitutional separation between church and state.

The 1948 decision, McCollum v. Board of Education, was a landmark in application of the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause to church-state violations occurring in the public schools.

Whale Tale: AFA Staffer Says Bible Mandates Death For SeaWorld Orca

On Feb. 24, a tragedy occurred at SeaWorld in Orlando, Fla. A six-ton killer whale known as Tillikum pulled trainer Dawn Brancheau underwater to her death in front of a crowd of horrified spectators watching a show.

Brancheau’s tragic death has led to some soul searching: What should be done with Tillikum? Is it ever appropriate to keep killer whales (also known as orcas) in captivity? Is it right to expect these animals to perform for our amusement?

Miffed About A Meeting: Religious Right Carps About White House Confab With Secularists

As last week came to a close, the Secular Coalition of America – an advocacy group made up of atheists, agnostics and humanists – had a chance to meet with members of the Obama Administration.

The meeting on Friday reportedly marked the first time American non-believers have ever met with White House officials, and it really struck a nerve with the Religious Right.

Forsyth County Appeals Prayer Ruling: A Vote Of Olympian Shortsightedness

I love the Winter Olympics—the ski jumping, the hockey games, the figure skating rivalries and even the curling have kept me glued to my TV for the Vancouver games. I find the athleticism and precision required of these winter sports fascinating, but many of my friends consider the time trials and individual events too redundant to watch.

Street Fight: Ohio Clergy Seeks End Of Tax Exemption For D.C. Structure Owned By ‘The Family’

The infamous “C Street house” is back in the news.

A group of clergy in Ohio, aided by a tax lawyer, has written to the Internal Revenue Service today asking the federal tax agency to examine the house’s tax-exempt status as a church.

If you’re just joining us, the C Street house is a structure in Washington, D.C., owned by a shadowy Religious Right group called “The Family” – a.k.a. the Fellowship Foundation.