Subscribe to RSS - Wall of Separation

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

Robertson Roils Israel

Not content with mucking up American politics, TV evangelist Pat Robertson has created a stir in Israel. On his 40th visit to the country, Robertson used a 40-minute speech to encourage Jews to accept Jesus as their messiah.

Robertson declared that Jews need to begin to cry out for their messiah. "I've met wonderful Jews in Siberia, Brazil, the United States, here in Jerusalem, who are all saying 'Yes, Jesus, you are our messiah," he said.

Panda-monium: Creationism On The March

Earlier this week, the school board in Dover, Pa., voted to bring attacks on evolution into biology classrooms. Students and teachers will be given books titled "Of Pandas and People" as reference works.

Offended by the choice of a mainstream textbook for classroom use, some members of the board pushed for this creationist tome to be distributed. Although it is not a required part of the curriculum, controversy erupted as church-state separationists and advocates for science education reminded the school board that state guidelines require the teaching of mainstream science.

Reading, Writing And Foot Washing?

It is a legitimate and constitutionally sound function for a public school teacher to teach about world cultures, including the religions they celebrate. What public school teachers must not do is to immerse their students in religious rituals, such as a baptism, or in the case of a fifth-grade teacher in California, Bible-based foot-washings.

A teacher at a public school near Sacramento, Calif., has apparently gone far beyond the bounds of the U.S. Constitution by engaging his students in a biblically based foot-washing ritual.

Religious Right Pushes 'Christian Ideals' In Congress

In an election-year ploy designed to energize Religious Right conservatives, the House of Representatives is planning to vote on several "culture war" issues over the next few days.

Votes are expected on a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage as well as bills that would legalize church-based partisan politicking and strip the federal courts of their ability to hear cases challenging the constitutionality of "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance.

'Holy Warrior' General Takes To CBS To Repair Reputation

After months of keeping from public view, the Army general who sparked international condemnation for his public statements describing the U.S. war on terrorism as a Christian battle against evil Islamists is now working to salvage his reputation.

On Wednesday, Lt. Gen. William G. "Jerry" Boykin took to a CBS News program to argue that his controversial statements before Christian evangelical gatherings had been badly represented in the media and that he was not a bigot.

Religious Liberty Cherished, Not Understood

Although a clear majority of Americans cherish their religious liberties, too many of them don't recognize the importance of keeping government and religion separate, according to a new poll from a Virginia-based nonprofit.

The survey, released today by the Council for America's First Freedom (CAFF), finds that 52 percent of respondents ranked religious freedom above other fundamental rights, such as freedom of the press and the right to assemble.

IRS Reminds Churches Not To Break The Law

In this heated election year, Jerry Falwell and his allies on the far right are working to confuse America's pastors about tax law. In late July,  the Lynchburg, Va.-based televangelist   wrote to churches telling them not to worry about federal tax law.

Under the headline, "NO CHURCH HAS EVER LOST ITS TAX-EXEMPT STATUS," Falwell wrote, "Every American pastor, as a tax-paying citizen, is free to express his views and opinions."

Falwell also claimed that the IRS rarely enforces the "no politicking" rule, implying that churches should not worry about it.