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All the most recent posts from AU's Wall of Separation Blog & The Protect Thy Neighbor Blog

Virginia's Religious Freedom Survives Legislative Attack

An attempt to rewrite Virginia's religious freedom provisions - words crafted by Thomas Jefferson and honed by James Madison and George Mason - has failed.

The Senate Courts of Justice Committee voted 10 to 5 Monday to reject a proposed constitutional amendment that would have opened the door to state-sanctioned prayer in public schools and other institutions.

'Faith-Based' Flim-Flam: Initiative Didn't Have A Prayer, Says Former White House Aide

The former deputy director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives has unleashed a stinging attack on the White House, asserting that President George W. Bush and his fellow Republicans were not serious about helping the poor through their much-vaunted "faith-based" initiative.

David Kuo, who worked in the faith-based office until December of 2003, blasted both Democrats and Republicans for blocking the scheme in a personal column that ran on www.beliefnet.com yesterday.

Focus On Politics: IRS Asked To Review Dobson Electioneering

James Dobson of Focus on the Family isn't shy about his increasing involvement in politics. During the 2004 campaign, the Religious Right leader traveled the country, rallying evangelical voters on behalf of favored candidates and issues. He is widely credited with helping to defeat former Sen. Tom Daschle in South Dakota. Since then, Dobson has given several media interviews about his political activities.

Love For Sale: Faith-Based Grant Buys TV Preacher's Favor

What a difference four years and $1.5 million makes!

On Feb. 20, 2001, TV preacher Pat Robertson expressed grave concerns about President George W. Bush's "faith-based" initiative. Addressing his "700 Club" audience, Robertson opined that the scheme could lead religious groups to become dependent on government handouts.

"[T]his thing could be a real Pandora's box," Robertson said. "And what seems to be such a great initiative can rise up to bite the organizations as well as the federal government. And I'm a little concerned about it, frankly."

Religion At Guantanamo: An American Disgrace?

The treatment of prisoners in ongoing American military operations remains a source of deep ethical concern. In addition to the questions of torture and the application of established international law, recent revelations from the military prisons at Guantanamo Bay and elsewhere present important issues about the role of religion in the debate.

Lugar To America: Brace Yourself For Theocracy In Iraq

U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) seemed to warn America yesterday that we may be surprised and disappointed by the government that results from this Sunday's election in Iraq. The national assembly that will be elected this weekend is tasked with drafting a constitution for the new Iraqi state.

Lugar, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, asked that we steel ourselves for the result. "Now, from our standpoint, the United States' standpoint, we may or may not be pleased with the final results of the constitution," he said.

Troubled Marriage: Religious Right Threatens To Walk Out On Bush

Having spent last year diligently supporting George W. Bush's reelection campaign, the Religious Right's political brigades expected that the president would remember them when shaping his second-term agenda.

As 2005 began, President Bush traveled across the country campaigning hard for his policy priorities. But as right-wing activists listened to his statements, they didn't hear what they had hoped for: somehow Social Security privatization had replaced a ban on gay marriage and abortion curbs as a top-tier agenda item.

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