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

Adopting Bias: New Va. Rules Seek To Safeguard ‘Faith-Based’ Bigotry

Legislators and media pundits in Washington, D.C., continue to obsess over the birth control mandate in the new health care law and whether church-related institutions like hospitals and colleges must provide contraceptive coverage.

While that’s going, a quieter tussle in Virginia has captured fewer national headlines. That’s a shame because a debate over adoption by same-sex couples in that state is perhaps a better indicator of where the Religious Right wants to take this country.

Air Farce: Religious Right Allies Complain About Removal Of ‘God’ From Military Motto

It seems there is no limit to the minute, inane issues that get the Religious Right all hot and bothered.

On Feb. 6, 36 members of Congress -- including Congressional Prayer Caucus Co-chair Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.) -- sent a letter to Air Force Chief of Staff General Norton Schwartz in protest of the removal of "God" from the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office (RCO) logo.

Standing Up For Birth Control: Religious Voices Speak Out In Contraceptive Debate

Every morning, it seems, I pick up The Washington Post and read another article or column about President Barack Obama’s decision to require employers to provide free coverage of birth control in their health insurance plans.

The move, announced on Jan. 20 by the Department of Health and Human Services, has sparked some controversy because, while it exempts houses of worship, it doesn’t exempt church-related institutions. Thus, church-owned hospitals, colleges and other entities will have to buy insurance plans for their employees that include contraceptive coverage.

Evolution Weekend – In Church!: Clergy Letter Project Shows Science And Religion Can Get Along

A group of religious leaders is working to dispel that idea that religion and science don’t get along.

Evolution Weekend is sponsored by the Clergy Letter Project, which seeks to inform the public that numerous clergy of multiple denominations support the teaching of evolution. To date, the project has gathered more than 13,000 signatures in support of sound science.

Buncombe’s Bible Battle: Time For Change At A N.C. Public School

Change can be difficult, but it’s often necessary. Just because you’ve been doing something for a long time doesn’t mean you should keep on doing it – especially if what you are doing isn’t legal.

Public education officials in Buncombe County, N.C., are learning this hard lesson right now. The community is ensnared in a flap over the role of religion in its schools. Officials are crafting new policies, and we hope they do the right thing.

It’s A Bird, It’s A Plane, It’s ‘Bible Man’: Alabama School Board Makes Super-Bad Decision

“Bible Man” isn’t a super hero, but it seems he has the power to control the minds of the Jackson County (Ala.) School Board.

Bible Man, also known as Horace Turner, Jr., leads monthly assemblies in public schools in which he tells biblical stories to elementary children. The original Bible Man, Horace Turner Sr., started this program at least 35 years ago.

Gerson Goes Goofy: Columnist Bashes Obama’s Decision To Side With People Over Prelates

I know that there are thoughtful conservative commentators in the world, but I do have to wonder why, when it comes to issues of religion and church-state separation, so many of them go off the deep end.

Consider Michael Gerson. The former speechwriter for President George W. Bush is now a syndicated columnist, and, while I don’t agree with much of what he says, he sometimes writes columns that make me think.

Indiana Creationism Bill, Part II: New Amendment Exposes Unconstitutional Religious Agenda

The attitude of the Indiana Senate seems to be: if at first you can’t make a bill constitutional, try, try again.

Yesterday I wrote about SB 89, legislation advancing through the Indiana Senate that would “require the teaching of various theories concerning the origin of life, including creation science” in public school science classes.

Creating Controversy: Misguided Indiana Creationism Bill Advances In State Senate

A bill is advancing in the Indiana Senate that would “require the teaching of various theories concerning the origin of life, including creation science” in public schools.

Similar versions of SB 89 have been tried before and always died in committee. This time, though, a longtime creationism advocate – Sen. Dennis Kruse (R-Auburn) – is chair of the Senate Education Committee. He also authored the legislation.

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