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Nashville, TN

Although it may seem odd to list a religious denomination among the nation’s top Religious Right groups, the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) has earned the distinction. The leadership of the nation’s largest Protestant denomination has been firmly aligned with the Religious Right for nearly three decades. SBC agencies often take public policy positions identical to that of major Religious Right organizations and join with them in various coalition efforts and legal briefs at the Supreme Court.

The SBC’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission – a fancy name for a lobbying office – is headed by Richard Land, who openly participates in Republican Party politics.

Land does not even pretend to be non-partisan. In 1998, he told The New York Times that the Religious Right was tired of being taken for granted by the GOP. “The go-along, get-along strategy is dead,” Land said. “No more engagement. We want a wedding ring, we want a ceremony, we want a consummation of the marriage.”

During the 2008 primary season, Land hyped the candidacy of Fred Thompson, frequently lauding him in the media. He compared U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton to Darth Vader and a witch (saying if she failed to be president, she would want to park her broom outside the Supreme Court for life). He has called George W. Bush “the greatest president of my lifetime.” Land claims he recommended that John McCain put evangelical Christian Sarah Palin on the ticket.

Since the election, Land has been harshly critical of President Barack Obama, going so far as to compare his heath-care reform efforts to Nazi genocide.

In a 1997 sermon, Land insisted he does not favor theocracy – he just believes a majority should be able to impose its religious will on others.

“It’s our work to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” Land said. “But when we preach that Gospel, and God has blessed it and people’s hearts and minds have been changed, then they have the right as citizens to come forth in the public arena and say, ‘This is wrong, and we want it stopped.’ For example, abortion is the killing of innocent children, and we want laws to change it. When we convince a majority of Americans that we are right, that’s not called a theocracy, that’s called the democratic process.”

Land Quote: “We must confront those trying to keep us from the public square. [America] was founded by Christian men who believed Christians should use their faith to make public policy.” (Family Impact Summit, Tampa, Fla., September 2007)

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AU Urges New Jersey Supreme Court To Prevent Morris County Tax Dollars From Funding Houses Of Worship

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After Raking In Various Government Subsidies For His ‘Ark Park,’ Ken Ham Refuses To Pay A Modest Safety Tax

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Tomorrow, the House of Representatives’ Appropriations Committee will vote on a bill that could cripple enforcement of the Johnson Amendment. Americans United has joined with 108 other organizations to urge the committee to strip the troubling provision.

Pages

Most Recent Blog Posts
All the most recent posts from AU's Wall of Separation Blog & The Protect Thy Neighbor Blog

AU Urges New Jersey Supreme Court To Prevent Morris County Tax Dollars From Funding Houses Of Worship

Americans United this week urged the New Jersey Supreme Court to stop Morris County officials from awarding taxpayer-funded grants to houses of worship.

Since 2012, Morris County has distributed more than $4.5 million in tax revenue to a dozen active churches through an historical preservation program. These grants are in direct conflict with the Religious Aid Clause in New Jersey’s state constitution, which proclaims that no resident can be compelled to pay taxes for “building or repairing any church or churches, place or places of worship.”

The Texas Legislature Is Meeting For A Special Session And Has A Second Chance To Pass Bad Legislation

The Texas legislature’s regular session ended just weeks ago, but lawmakers are already back in Austin for a special session. Governor Greg Abbott (R) was forced to call the special session after the state legislature failed to adopt must-pass legislation during the regulation session: in a dramatic stand-off, the Senate had refused to pass key bills as retaliation for the House refusing to pass legislation that would discriminate against transgender people.

The U.S. Supreme Court Has Rejected Trump’s Cruel ‘Grandma Ban,’ But Refugees Remain In Limbo

The U.S. Supreme Court offered a mixed bag of good and bad news Wednesday on President Donald Trump’s Muslim ban.

The good news: The high court left in place a federal court’s decision last week that the U.S. must grant entry to grandparents and other extended family members from the six Muslim-majority countries targeted in Trump’s ban. That lifts the so-called “grandma ban” and will prevent the cruel separation of many Muslim families.

After Raking In Various Government Subsidies For His ‘Ark Park,’ Ken Ham Refuses To Pay A Modest Safety Tax

When Australian evangelist and creationist Ken Ham decided he wanted to open Ark Encounter, a theme park centered on a rendition of Noah’s Ark in northern Kentucky, he was quick to point out that the facility would be a for-profit enterprise.

Two New Trump Administration Attorneys Have Worked To Undermine Women’s Health Care

As new federal regulations reportedly are imminent that would gut the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requirement that most health insurance plans cover contraceptives, two Trump administration attorneys who fought for employers to be able to cite religious beliefs as justification to deny women access to vital health care have been in the news recently.

The Trump Administration Had A Busy Week of Cozying Up To Religious Right Leaders

President Donald J. Trump had quite a week as more scandals involving Russia, his family and his campaign unfolded. But that didn’t stop him from finding time to talk to Religious Right leaders and do a news interview with Pat Robertson of the Christian Broadcasting Network. All the while, his administration and friends in Congress were taking steps to implement the campaign promises he made to allow churches to endorse candidates and to allow religious freedom laws to be used to discriminate.

Proposed Provision To Weaken The Johnson Amendment Heads To House Floor

Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee voted to cripple the IRS’ ability to enforce the Johnson Amendment – the law that ensures tax-exempt nonprofits, including houses of worship, cannot endorse or oppose candidates.

AU Supports Mississippians Challenging Discriminatory HB 1523, A So-called “Religious Freedom” Law

Because our laws should be a shield used to protect religious freedom and not a sword used to harm others, Americans United has filed a friend-of-the-court brief in support of the Mississippians challenging the state’s discriminatory House Bill 1523.

Congress Should Not Undermine The Johnson Amendment

Tomorrow, the House of Representatives’ Appropriations Committee will vote on a bill that could cripple enforcement of the Johnson Amendment. Americans United has joined with 108 other organizations to urge the committee to strip the troubling provision.

Pages

Most Recent Blog Posts
All the most recent posts from AU's Wall of Separation Blog & The Protect Thy Neighbor Blog

AU Urges New Jersey Supreme Court To Prevent Morris County Tax Dollars From Funding Houses Of Worship

Americans United this week urged the New Jersey Supreme Court to stop Morris County officials from awarding taxpayer-funded grants to houses of worship.

Since 2012, Morris County has distributed more than $4.5 million in tax revenue to a dozen active churches through an historical preservation program. These grants are in direct conflict with the Religious Aid Clause in New Jersey’s state constitution, which proclaims that no resident can be compelled to pay taxes for “building or repairing any church or churches, place or places of worship.”

The Texas Legislature Is Meeting For A Special Session And Has A Second Chance To Pass Bad Legislation

The Texas legislature’s regular session ended just weeks ago, but lawmakers are already back in Austin for a special session. Governor Greg Abbott (R) was forced to call the special session after the state legislature failed to adopt must-pass legislation during the regulation session: in a dramatic stand-off, the Senate had refused to pass key bills as retaliation for the House refusing to pass legislation that would discriminate against transgender people.

The U.S. Supreme Court Has Rejected Trump’s Cruel ‘Grandma Ban,’ But Refugees Remain In Limbo

The U.S. Supreme Court offered a mixed bag of good and bad news Wednesday on President Donald Trump’s Muslim ban.

The good news: The high court left in place a federal court’s decision last week that the U.S. must grant entry to grandparents and other extended family members from the six Muslim-majority countries targeted in Trump’s ban. That lifts the so-called “grandma ban” and will prevent the cruel separation of many Muslim families.

After Raking In Various Government Subsidies For His ‘Ark Park,’ Ken Ham Refuses To Pay A Modest Safety Tax

When Australian evangelist and creationist Ken Ham decided he wanted to open Ark Encounter, a theme park centered on a rendition of Noah’s Ark in northern Kentucky, he was quick to point out that the facility would be a for-profit enterprise.

Two New Trump Administration Attorneys Have Worked To Undermine Women’s Health Care

As new federal regulations reportedly are imminent that would gut the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requirement that most health insurance plans cover contraceptives, two Trump administration attorneys who fought for employers to be able to cite religious beliefs as justification to deny women access to vital health care have been in the news recently.

The Trump Administration Had A Busy Week of Cozying Up To Religious Right Leaders

President Donald J. Trump had quite a week as more scandals involving Russia, his family and his campaign unfolded. But that didn’t stop him from finding time to talk to Religious Right leaders and do a news interview with Pat Robertson of the Christian Broadcasting Network. All the while, his administration and friends in Congress were taking steps to implement the campaign promises he made to allow churches to endorse candidates and to allow religious freedom laws to be used to discriminate.

Proposed Provision To Weaken The Johnson Amendment Heads To House Floor

Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee voted to cripple the IRS’ ability to enforce the Johnson Amendment – the law that ensures tax-exempt nonprofits, including houses of worship, cannot endorse or oppose candidates.

AU Supports Mississippians Challenging Discriminatory HB 1523, A So-called “Religious Freedom” Law

Because our laws should be a shield used to protect religious freedom and not a sword used to harm others, Americans United has filed a friend-of-the-court brief in support of the Mississippians challenging the state’s discriminatory House Bill 1523.

Congress Should Not Undermine The Johnson Amendment

Tomorrow, the House of Representatives’ Appropriations Committee will vote on a bill that could cripple enforcement of the Johnson Amendment. Americans United has joined with 108 other organizations to urge the committee to strip the troubling provision.

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Church & State
May 2011 Church & State

Religious Freedom

No Matter What The Religious Right Says, It’s For Everyone

May 2011 Church & State

Conversion Story

A Former Jerry Falwell Follower Reflects On How The Religious Right Gets It Wrong