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'Gum Game' Spat: Ministry's Sex Ed. Class Raises Church-State Questions In Maryland Public School

Rockville Crisis Pregnancy Center (RCPC), the non-profit group responsible for sex education in several Montgomery County, Md., public schools, recently came under fire for asking students to participate in a rather unsanitary exercise. To show how quickly and easily sexually transmitted diseases supposedly spread, 15 students were asked to take turns chewing one stick of gum for five seconds each. Read more

Land Of Hypocrisy: Partisan SBC Official Chides Carter For Religious Politicking

Recently President Jimmy Carter announced a new initiative to pull together moderate Baptist bodies under an informal umbrella group. President Bill Clinton endorsed the effort. Both men are Southern Baptists who are unhappy with the right-wing tilt of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC). Read more

Panning Paine: Arkansas Lawmakers Block Resolution Celebrating American Hero

Thomas Paine, the 18th-century writer and philosopher who played a significant role in the American Revolution, has been honored by nine states for his invaluable contributions to our nation's independence. But Arkansas will not be joining the list any time soon. Read more

High-Flying Lies: The Christian Coalition, Nancy Pelosi And The Plane Truth

Once the most powerful and influential Religious Right group in America, the Christian Coalition (CC) these days finds itself desperately struggling for relevance.

The Coalition's latest stunt to try to get its name in the newspaper, however, only shows how pathetic the organization has become.Yesterday CC President Roberta Combs issued a press release attacking Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi for allegedly demanding a lavish military jet to fly her from Washington to her home district in San Francisco. Read more

Wild About Harry: Schwartzbart Preaches The Gospel Of Church-State Separation

Harry Schwartzbart is a man with a mission.

"I am determined," he says, "to keep the United States from becoming a theocracy."

To achieve that goal, the 84-year-old San Fernando Valley, Calif., activist has devoted countless hours to educating people in his community about the religious liberty clauses of the First Amendment and promoting Americans United for Separation of Church and State. Read more

At Cross Purposes: Chapel Change At William And Mary Ignites Nasty Debate

A seemingly simple gesture of inclusion has set off fierce debate at one of the nation's oldest public universities. In October 2006, College of William and Mary President Gene Nichol decided a cross should be removed from permanent display in the Williamsburg, Virginia university's Wren Chapel. Read more

Jailhouse Crock: Religious Right Unleashes Propaganda Barrage In Advance Of 'InnerChange' Court Appearance

A week from today, the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments in an Americans United-sponsored case challenging tax funding of Prison Fellowship's "InnerChange Freedom Initiative" (IFI) for inmates in Iowa.The case is receiving heightened scrutiny because of a surprise development: Retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor will sit on the three-judge panel that will hear the case. Read more

Dishonoring John Leland: Baptists Give Religious Liberty Award To Bush

The Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberty Committee (ERLC) recently presented their annual John Leland Religious Liberty Award to President George W. Bush.

According to Baptist Press News, ERLC President Richard Land presented the honor to the president in a Jan. 29 ceremony in the Oval Office. Read more

Black Backtracks: Senate Chaplain Drops Out Of Religious Right Conference

It's not unusual for government officials to appear at dinners, conferences and galas, but when Americans United staffers came across Senate Chaplain Barry Black's name on the list of speakers at an extreme right-wing event, we were shocked.

Black was scheduled to appear at Coral Ridge Ministries' "Reclaiming America for Christ" conference in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., next month. Yesterday afternoon, AU Executive Director Rev. Barry Lynn sent a letter to Black's office, asking him to reconsider. Read more