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

Education For Everyone: In Defense Of ‘Government Schools’

Over the weekend, The New York Times ran a story about a trend among far-right conservatives in Kansas who call public schools “government schools.”

The idea is that a shift in terminology will change opinions. After all, to many people, “public” equals good, while “government” equals bad.

As Erica Massman, a moderate Republican, told The Times, “They are trying to rebrand public education.”

Inappropriate Appropriations: U.S. House Approves Spending Bill Limiting Reproductive Rights While Boosting School Vouchers And Pulpit Politicking

The U.S. House of Representatives passed an important appropriations bill (H.R. 5485) yesterday that will help fund the federal government for the next year. Tucked into this legislation are three troubling provisions that would weaken church-state separation and harm true religious liberty.

Some members of Congress are working to limit true religious freedom.

A Flood Of Nonsense: Ken Ham’s False Dichotomy

Ken Ham’s $102 million Ark Encounter theme park in Williamstown, Ky., opens today. The official launch of this boat on dry land has led to a spate of media attention for the Australian creationist and would-be Noah.

Ham’s “ark park” was the subject of a lengthy New York Times story recently, during which Ham admitted, yet again, that the entire project has one goal: converting people to his brand of fundamentalist Christianity.

Keeping Secrets?: Kim Davis Accused Of Violating Ky. Open-Records Law

Kim Davis’ legal woes aren’t quite over yet. The office of the State Attorney General announced yesterday that the embattled Rowan County clerk may have violated the Kentucky Open Records Act when she refused to comply with a records request from a Washington, D.C.-based government watchdog.

Taxing Case: Pending Supreme Court Controversy Could Lead To More Public Support For Religion

Editor’s Note: This is the first of a two-part blog post by Carmen Green, a Madison Fellow in AU’s Legal Department. Read the second part here.

Back in January, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear a case that has the potential to change church-state law dramatically – and not for the better.

Censorship Crusade: Far-Right Politician, Parents Team Up To Ban Books In Va. Public Schools

Some parents in a Virginia county are upset about a few books on public school summer reading lists – so much so that they’re calling for censorship.

Chesterfield County, which is just south of Richmond, has been besieged for a second-straight year by a group that is clearly under the influence of the Religious Right.

Fireworks For The Fourth: No, The United States Was Not Founded To Be A ‘Christian Nation’

Note: Today’s blog post originally ran last year to mark Independence Day. For more information about the “Christian nation” myth, see this Americans United brochure.

Today is Independence Day, and many of us will be meeting up with family for cook-outs, picnics, reunions and other events.

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