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

Insane Initiative: Calif. Attorney General Balks At Certifying ‘Kill The Gays’ Ballot Question

California Attorney General Kamala Harris has moved to block a ballot measure that would legalize vigilante violence against the state’s LGBT community. Harris has asked a state court to grant her the authority to prevent the measure from becoming eligible for a public vote.

As attorney general, she is currently required to draft a title and summary for the measure – even though the initiative in question would authorize the execution of gay people. Read more

Offended By An Oath: Proposal Would Force Air Force Cadets To Say ‘So Help Me God’

A federal lawmaker thinks cadets at the U.S. Air Force Academy and all members of the armed forces, whether enlisted or commissioned, should be forced to recite an oath that ends with the words “so help me God,” and he recently introduced legislation that would attempt to do just that by requiring Congress to approve any changes to oaths. Read more

Unrepentant And Unpunished: Charges Dropped Against Fla. Vandal In Satanic Temple Case

Susan Hemeryck, the self-described “Catholic warrior” who vandalized a display by the Satanic Temple in the state capitol rotunda in Tallahassee, Fla., is getting off scot-free.

You read that right. All charges against Hemeryck were dropped, even though she admitted to police officers that she attacked the display because she considered it offensive. Read more

Turning The Tables: Okla. Lawmaker’s Proposal Would Have Required Businesses To Give Public Notice If They Intended To Discriminate Against LGBT Persons

As some business owners nationwide argue that they have a “religious freedom” right to refuse service to LGBT customers, one Oklahoma lawmaker fought back with a proposal that would have required businesses to issue public notice if they intended to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation. Read more

Bumpy Lane: Religious Right Operative Seeks To Build (Another) Church-Based Political Machine

Here’s what the country doesn’t need right now: another zealot aiming to mobilize right-wing pastors to become a force in electoral politics.

Yet that’s what the country is getting. Read more

Marriage Mess: Okla. Bill Tries But Fails To Remove The State From The Wedding Business

The Oklahoma House has passed a bill that would, critics claim, throw the current laws on civil marriage in the state into chaos. HB 1125, sponsored by State Rep. Todd Russ (R-Cordell), would require couples to have a member of the clergy or another registered officiant solemnize the wedding and issue a marriage certificate.  The bill would eliminate marriage licenses altogether. Read more