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

Casper's Commandments Caper: 'Historic Plaza' Offers Thin Disguise To Decalogue Display

Sometimes it seems politicians strive for ways to waste time and public funds.

For example, city officials in Casper, Wyo., are dead set on frittering away taxpayer dollars on public promotion of religion.

Apparently facing no budget difficulties and itching to appease the city's religious majority, Casper Mayor Kate Sarosy and other city officials today will dedicate a so-called "historic plaza," containing a large granite Ten Commandments monument surrounded by other displays. Read more

Prayer War On The Hill: Hindu Invocation In Senate Reveals Religious Right Rancor

Our nation's Religious Right cabal carps constantly about a lack of religion in the public square and promotes the wildly misleading notion that the nation's Founding Fathers envisioned a government devoted to Christianity.

This morning an incident unfolded in the U.S. Senate that provided a glimpse of the nastiness that movement has wrought. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) had invited a Hindu clergyperson to offer a prayer to open today's session, and it was disrupted by angry howls from a gaggle of Religious Right protestors. Read more

Unsound Science: Former Surgeon General Laments Bush Administration's Theology-Driven Health Policies

It should come as no surprise that the Bush administration is silencing science to push its political and religious agenda. A string of government scientists, from the National Institutes of Health to NASA, has criticized Bush for ignoring scientific evidence demonstrating the promise of embryonic stem-cell research and the dangers of global warming. Read more

Repentant Evangelicals?: Conservative Christians Reconsider Salvation Through Politics

A growing number of evangelicals seems to be going through a new "great awakening" by realizing that salvation does not come through partisan politics.

Recent books by evangelicals such as David Kuo, Randall Balmer and Darryl Hart have challenged the Religious Right's view that Christians have a duty to use the political system to exercise control over society. Read more

Arlington Advance: Wiccan Pentacle Placement Represents Religious Liberty Progress

Among the many memorial services at Arlington National Cemetery this Independence Day was a small gathering at the gravesites of Army Captain William O'Rourke and his wife, Jan Deanna.

Captain O'Rourke passed away 11 years ago and had a Christian cross engraved on his headstone. His wife's side of the marker, however, has remained blank since her death in 2005 because she was Wiccan. Read more

Portrait Of Unconstitutionality: La. Judge Defends Jesus Picture In Courthouse

A local judge in Slidell, La., says he has no intention of removing a religious display from his courthouse.

The ACLU of Louisiana sent a letter to the Slidell City Court on June 20, asking the clerk to remove a 16th century Russian Orthodox painting called "Christ the Savior" and its accompanying message, "To know peace, obey these laws." Read more

Flunking A Test: Vouchers Fail Again In D.C.

Republicans in Congress pushed a voucher plan aimed at students in Washington, D.C., through Congress late in 2004. The controversial plan was described as an "experiment" that would be subject to oversight to see if it was effective.

The first results are in. An objective study of students taking part in the program found no significant improvement in academic performance of the voucher students compared to students who remained in D.C.'s public schools. (As is common with voucher plans, most private schools taking part in the Washington program are religious.) Read more

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