Subscribe to RSS - History and Origins of Church-State Separation

America’s founders crafted a constitution that separated church and state. They believed this was the best mechanism for protecting the rights of all. Their efforts have paid off handsomely. The United States enjoys unprecedented levels of religious liberty, expanding pluralism and a high degree of inter-faith harmony. None of this would have been possible without the wisdom of our founders. Despite this record of success, opponents of church-state separation are trying to rewrite American history to promote their ideas of an officially “Christian nation.” This section debunks these discredited claims and provides sound historical materials.

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

In The Wake Of Tragedy, Pat Robertson Unleashes A Raft Of Thoughtless Comments

Americans were horrified by the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas. It’s still unclear what motivated Stephen Paddock to unleash such carnage, and that’s leading some people to engage in speculation.

Some ideas we can easily discount. TV preacher Pat Robertson, for example, has blamed the incident on a lack of respect for President Donald Trump, a thoughtless move that does little more than shift the blame away from the killer.

With New Birth Control Rule, Trump Administration Ramps Up Attack On Women’s Health Care

Ask women about birth control, and they’ll tell you they use it to protect their health and to plan their families. They are also likely to explain that it allows them to participate in the workforce and pursue their education. In other words, it’s critical to their health and equality.

New regulations issued by the Trump administration today, however, could threaten all of that. Under the regulations, bosses and universities can use religion as an excuse to deny their staff and students health insurance coverage for birth control.

Americans United Asks Court To Block Trump’s Muslim Ban 3.0

Today, Americans United and our allies will ask a federal court to block President Donald Trump’s Muslim Ban 3.0 from taking effect until the case we filed challenging the latest ban is decided.

We are filing a request for a preliminary injunction that would stop the Muslim ban from taking effect on Oct. 18. The Trump administration wants to indefinitely bar nationals from the predominantly Muslim countries of Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen from entering the United States.

We Don’t Need To Bring Back School Prayer Because We Already Have It

Jeff Landry, the attorney general of Louisiana, told a Religious Right group recently that he plans to work to bring prayer back to public schools.

“With your prayers, and an offense, we will get prayer back in public schools,” Landry told attendees of an event sponsored by the Louisiana Family Forum last month.

Federal Court Ruling Supports Religious Freedom, Strikes Down Florida County’s Prayer Practice

Over the weekend, a federal court struck down a Florida county’s practice of denying atheists, humanists and other non-theists the opportunity to offer invocations at the start of the county commission’s meetings.

The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida ruled the policy of Brevard County’s Board of County Commissioners to allow only monotheistic, overwhelmingly Christian invocations violated both the U.S. and Florida Constitutions – namely by the government showing favoritism for certain faiths.

Forced Patriotism: You Don’t Have To Stand For It

A few days ago, as Puerto Rico and other American territories were reeling from the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, President Donald J. Trump had other things on his mind – primarily professional football players who chose to “take a knee” during the playing of the National Anthem.

As usual, Trump kicked things off with an obligatory string of tweets. He then ramped up the rhetoric in other forums.  

Pages

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

In The Wake Of Tragedy, Pat Robertson Unleashes A Raft Of Thoughtless Comments

Americans were horrified by the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas. It’s still unclear what motivated Stephen Paddock to unleash such carnage, and that’s leading some people to engage in speculation.

Some ideas we can easily discount. TV preacher Pat Robertson, for example, has blamed the incident on a lack of respect for President Donald Trump, a thoughtless move that does little more than shift the blame away from the killer.

With New Birth Control Rule, Trump Administration Ramps Up Attack On Women’s Health Care

Ask women about birth control, and they’ll tell you they use it to protect their health and to plan their families. They are also likely to explain that it allows them to participate in the workforce and pursue their education. In other words, it’s critical to their health and equality.

New regulations issued by the Trump administration today, however, could threaten all of that. Under the regulations, bosses and universities can use religion as an excuse to deny their staff and students health insurance coverage for birth control.

Americans United Asks Court To Block Trump’s Muslim Ban 3.0

Today, Americans United and our allies will ask a federal court to block President Donald Trump’s Muslim Ban 3.0 from taking effect until the case we filed challenging the latest ban is decided.

We are filing a request for a preliminary injunction that would stop the Muslim ban from taking effect on Oct. 18. The Trump administration wants to indefinitely bar nationals from the predominantly Muslim countries of Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen from entering the United States.

We Don’t Need To Bring Back School Prayer Because We Already Have It

Jeff Landry, the attorney general of Louisiana, told a Religious Right group recently that he plans to work to bring prayer back to public schools.

“With your prayers, and an offense, we will get prayer back in public schools,” Landry told attendees of an event sponsored by the Louisiana Family Forum last month.

Federal Court Ruling Supports Religious Freedom, Strikes Down Florida County’s Prayer Practice

Over the weekend, a federal court struck down a Florida county’s practice of denying atheists, humanists and other non-theists the opportunity to offer invocations at the start of the county commission’s meetings.

The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida ruled the policy of Brevard County’s Board of County Commissioners to allow only monotheistic, overwhelmingly Christian invocations violated both the U.S. and Florida Constitutions – namely by the government showing favoritism for certain faiths.

Forced Patriotism: You Don’t Have To Stand For It

A few days ago, as Puerto Rico and other American territories were reeling from the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, President Donald J. Trump had other things on his mind – primarily professional football players who chose to “take a knee” during the playing of the National Anthem.

As usual, Trump kicked things off with an obligatory string of tweets. He then ramped up the rhetoric in other forums.  

Pages

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

In The Wake Of Tragedy, Pat Robertson Unleashes A Raft Of Thoughtless Comments

Americans were horrified by the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas. It’s still unclear what motivated Stephen Paddock to unleash such carnage, and that’s leading some people to engage in speculation.

Some ideas we can easily discount. TV preacher Pat Robertson, for example, has blamed the incident on a lack of respect for President Donald Trump, a thoughtless move that does little more than shift the blame away from the killer.

With New Birth Control Rule, Trump Administration Ramps Up Attack On Women’s Health Care

Ask women about birth control, and they’ll tell you they use it to protect their health and to plan their families. They are also likely to explain that it allows them to participate in the workforce and pursue their education. In other words, it’s critical to their health and equality.

New regulations issued by the Trump administration today, however, could threaten all of that. Under the regulations, bosses and universities can use religion as an excuse to deny their staff and students health insurance coverage for birth control.

Americans United Asks Court To Block Trump’s Muslim Ban 3.0

Today, Americans United and our allies will ask a federal court to block President Donald Trump’s Muslim Ban 3.0 from taking effect until the case we filed challenging the latest ban is decided.

We are filing a request for a preliminary injunction that would stop the Muslim ban from taking effect on Oct. 18. The Trump administration wants to indefinitely bar nationals from the predominantly Muslim countries of Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen from entering the United States.

We Don’t Need To Bring Back School Prayer Because We Already Have It

Jeff Landry, the attorney general of Louisiana, told a Religious Right group recently that he plans to work to bring prayer back to public schools.

“With your prayers, and an offense, we will get prayer back in public schools,” Landry told attendees of an event sponsored by the Louisiana Family Forum last month.

Federal Court Ruling Supports Religious Freedom, Strikes Down Florida County’s Prayer Practice

Over the weekend, a federal court struck down a Florida county’s practice of denying atheists, humanists and other non-theists the opportunity to offer invocations at the start of the county commission’s meetings.

The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida ruled the policy of Brevard County’s Board of County Commissioners to allow only monotheistic, overwhelmingly Christian invocations violated both the U.S. and Florida Constitutions – namely by the government showing favoritism for certain faiths.

Forced Patriotism: You Don’t Have To Stand For It

A few days ago, as Puerto Rico and other American territories were reeling from the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, President Donald J. Trump had other things on his mind – primarily professional football players who chose to “take a knee” during the playing of the National Anthem.

As usual, Trump kicked things off with an obligatory string of tweets. He then ramped up the rhetoric in other forums.  

Pages

Press Releases
Church & State
December 2016 Church & State

Pickney's Promise

Two Hundred and Thirty Years Ago, An Obscure Founding Father Put Something Very Important Into The U.S. Constitution

March 2016 Church & State

Debunker Of Lies

Chris Rodda Refutes 'Christian Nation' Pseudo-Historian David Barton In New Book

February 2016 Church & State

A Wall For All

Church-State Separation Protects Everyone, But Non-Religious Americans Have Special Reasons For Supporting It

February 2016 Church & State

Presidential Proclamations

U.S. Chief Executives Have Said Some Wonderful Things About Separation Of Church And State Over The Years. Here Are Ten Great Ones.

February 2016 Church & State

The Last Political Taboo?

The U.S. Constitution Forbids 'Religious Tests' For Public Office, But When It Comes To Non-Believers, Many Voters Have Decided To Impose One Anyway

January 2016 Church & State

Holy Hysteria

A New Look At The Salem Witch Trials