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

Targeting Texas: Social Studies Panel May Include Right-Wing Ideologues

First it was science. Now it's social studies. What's next – a Religious Right version of algebra?

Texas Freedom Network (TFN) reported over the weekend that the Texas State Board of Education is gearing up to appoint a social studies curriculum "expert" panel, and according to TFN, David Barton is at the top of this "expert" list. Read more

Diplomas And Disrespect: Public Schools Should Not Force Religion On Graduating Seniors

This summer, I will celebrate my 10-year high school reunion. In fact, just last week I received a Facebook message from our class president to "save the date" (which, as a side note, I doubt I will be "saving").

But reading the message got me thinking. High school can be a tough place, but there definitely were some good times. And one of those times was putting on my cap and gown to celebrate finally getting out of there! Read more

The First 100 Days: President Obama's Scorecard On Church And State

I guess it's a little impertinent for me to issue a report card for President Barack Obama on his performance during his first 100 days in office. I'm not his teacher, and he's not my student.

But what the heck? It's a free country and everyone else is doing it. So here goes.

I'm focusing on issues with church-state implications. Somebody else can tackle the other topics. Read more

History Hysteria: Religious Right Attacks Holocaust Education In Kentucky

Teachers are always looking for ways to make history a more interesting and relevant subject. Young people tend to get turned off if history appears to be little more than memorizing a dry list of dates, names and battles.

Many schools want to find ways to make history come alive. In my daughter's high school, the class did special projects when they discussed the 1920s. (My daughter designed and sewed her own flapper dress.) When it was time to study the Great Depression, the class watched and then discussed the 1940 film adaptation of "The Grapes of Wrath." Read more

Spiritual Warfare: Ex-Chaplain Prays For Death Of AU's Lynn

On Friday I wrote about Gordon James Klingenschmitt, a former Navy chaplain who has been trying to raise money and recruit supporters through a Religious Right Web site titled prayinjesusname.org.

Americans United and the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) took issue with Klingenschmitt's site and his e-mail alerts that referred to him as "Chaplain Klingenschmitt" and showed him in a Navy uniform. We wrote to Navy officials, arguing that Klingenschmitt was attempting to mislead people, as he is a former chaplain. Read more

The Devil And Bishop Finn: Catholic Prelate Wages Spiritual War To Enforce God's Law

Are you an agent of Satan? Bishop Robert W. Finn thinks you might be.

In a recent address to the Catholic Church-sponsored "Gospel of Life Convention," Finn stated bluntly, "We are at war!"

Using highly intemperate language, the Kansas City, Mo., prelate said the "Church Militant" is "engaged in a constant warfare with Satan" and "human enemies," people who are "deceived by Satan's distortions and lies." Read more

A Ruse By Any Other Name: Texas Fundamentalists Want State To Honor Religion As Science

At least some people in Texas are standing up for sound science education. And hopefully, they won't back down, despite a new lawsuit challenging their decision.

According to The Dallas Morning News, the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) has sued the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board for failing to approve its master's degree in creationism-based science education. Read more

Pastors In Prison?: Religious Right Spreads Lies About Hate Crimes Bill

Legislation that would target hate crimes is expected to start moving in Congress soon. The Religious Right is going bananas.

The legislation, the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009 (H.R. 1913), is intended to do a few key things: It would allow the U.S. Justice Department to offer assistance when a crime that results in death or serious injury is committed against any American because of the victim's race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability. Read more

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