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

Making 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue An Islam-Free Zone: Ben Carson Says No Muslim Should Be President

Dr. Ben Carson, a retired neurosurgeon who is currently seeking the Republican nomination for president, apparently believes Americans should not elect a Muslim to the presidency because, he says, Islam is incompatible with the U.S. Constitution.

“I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation,” Carson said during a “Meet the Press” interview on Sunday. “I absolutely would not agree with that.” Read more

Barton Bounces Back: Religious Right Purveyor Of Ersatz History Still Going Strong

Three years ago, Religious Right phony historian David Barton published a ridiculous book called The Jefferson Lies that argued, in part, that Thomas Jefferson was a fundamentalist Christian who wanted Christianity to form the basis of the U.S. government.

The tome marked a turning point for Barton. His previous books had been self-produced, but The Jefferson Lies was issued by Thomas Nelson, a respectable publisher of evangelical works. Read more

Godly Raiment Sought: Ala. City Official Says The Almighty Would Support Proposed Ban On Saggy Pants

An Alabama city lawmaker wants to ban his constituents from wearing saggy pants and short skirts because such fashion choices are supposedly outside the divine dress code.  

Perhaps quoting from the Book of Vogue, Dadeville City Council Member Frank Goodman told The Daily Beast website, “I prayed and asked God to show me what I should do, and the way I should go about it. What would God do? Did God go around doing this?” Read more

Once More, With Enthusiasm: Texas Attorney General Again Refuses To Recognize Marriage Equality

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton seems to have his sights set on being the next Religious Right martyr.

In a move that is as petty as it is mean spirited, Paxton recently asked a court not to recognize the common-law marriage of two women, one of whom is now deceased. The issue arose when Sonemaly Phrasavath, surviving wife of Stella Powell, made a claim to the inheritance that Powell left her when she died in 2014. Read more

Coercion In Kansas?: State Worker Claims She Was Fired For Non-Attendance At Christian Service

Let’s say some people at a company want to get together during lunch hour and hold a Bible study. It’s totally voluntary, and they don’t pressure anyone else to attend. This is not likely to cause any problems.

But let’s say the boss organized the Bible study and attends it regularly. Now we might have a problem if subordinates are coerced to attend overtly or even subtly. (If, for example, those who attend get in good with the boss and are first in line for promotions, raises, etc.) Read more

Religion 101: Students Can Benefit From Religion Classes As Long As Public Schools Teach Rather Than Preach

One of the best ways to build religious tolerance in this country is by educating children about various perspectives on both belief and non-belief. But as an experienced educator reminds us, any public school that offers a course on religion must be mindful to stay focused on teaching, not preaching. Read more

Dry In The Sky?: Muslim Flight Attendant Files Lawsuit Over Airline’s Refusal To Exempt Her From Touching Alcohol

When it comes to people refusing to do their jobs on religious grounds, Rowan County, Ky., Clerk Kim Davis is getting all the attention right now. But when her 15 minutes pass, we’ll be left with plenty of private-sector employees who think the First Amendment exempts them from performing any job functions they don’t like. Read more