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

Ralph Reed’s Rebound?: Fallen Fundamentalist Icon Hopes To Influence Upcoming Elections

As the November elections approach, it seems a second-tier advocacy group run by a disgraced Religious Right icon is gearing up to make a major impact.

Politico reported this week that Ralph Reed’s Faith & Freedom Coalition (FFC) is planning an all-out blitz in states like Colorado, Iowa, Arkansas, Kansas, Michigan, Louisiana and North Carolina in the hope that Republicans and can take control of the U.S. Senate. Read more

Bad News From The Badger State: More Wisc. Voucher Students Get Taxpayer Dollars For Religious Education

The number of students using vouchers to attend private schools in the Oshkosh, Wisc., area grew rapidly in the past year, showing once again that so-called “school choice” schemes are frequently little more than a taxpayer-funded bailout for religious schools. Read more

The Subpoena Saga: Houston Officials’ Misstep Feeds Religious Right Persecution Complex

Last week, a story began circulating in the media about five conservative churches that were subpoenaed in Houston and ordered to turn over any sermons they had delivered about gay rights (along with a lot of other material).

Religious Right groups went ballistic. It often turns out in cases like this that what’s really going is less horrifying than the far right would have you believe. In this case, it turns out they actually had a point. Read more

Piety Or Prison No More: Atheist Jailed For Refusal To Enter Faith-Based Drug Rehab Program Receives Large Settlement

An atheist who once spent 100 days in prison because he refused to enter a religion-based rehab program has been awarded a sizable settlement for his unjust treatment.

Back in 2007, Californian Barry Hazle was busted for possession of methamphetamine and sentenced to one year in jail. Hazle was paroled, but to stay out of jail he had to enter a treatment program. That’s where Hazle, described in media reports as a lifelong atheist, ran into trouble. Read more

Divine Discrimination?: Religious Refusals Likely To Grow In Marriage Equality’s Wake

North Carolina’s same-sex marriage ban is probably history. But the Supreme Court’s decision to let a lower court ruling striking the ban doesn’t sit so well with the Religious Right, and thanks to the efforts of local extremists, a new front in the civil rights battle has emerged: religious refusals. Read more

The Walking Dead?: Despite What Some Claim, The Religious Right Is Alive And Kicking

Just as author and humorist Mark Twain was once pronounced dead prematurely, so too it seems is the case with the Religious Right.

Last week, Politico published a story on “how Republicans lost the culture war.” Author Bill Scher writes that the GOP “stopped being savvy on abortion,” “got weird about birth control” and “bet wrong on gay marriage.” Read more

Fundamentalist Freak-Out: It’s (Not) The End Of The World As We Know It, And The Religious Right Doesn’t Feel Fine

Mat Staver, a Religious Right attorney and dean of Liberty University’s law school, isn’t very happy with the Supreme Court’s refusal to hear the same-sex marriage cases.

As I’m sure you’ll recall, the high court’s Oct. 6 decision not to wade into this matter had the effect of legalizing same-sex marriage in a bunch of states, several of them in the Bible Belt. (Here are some shots of same-sex couples getting married in Oklahoma – Oklahoma! Pretty darned amazing.) Read more

Constitutional Confusion: Ky. ‘Ark Park’ Claims First Amendment Right To Taxpayer Assistance

Thanks to a complaint from Americans United, a proposed theme park run by a fundamentalist Christian ministry is in danger of losing tax incentives preliminarily approved by misguided Kentucky officials. Now, with so much at stake, that ministry is going on the offensive – claiming it has a “religious liberty” right to taxpayer subsidies! Read more

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