Fox’s Todd Starnes Shows Ignorance in Police Car Decal Case

Todd Starnes

Why does Todd Starnes still have a platform? Oh right, because millions of deplorables still eat up his Christian persecution, anti-Muslim, anti-atheist, homophobic, transphobic, “everyone is bad but old fat Christian white guys” rhetoric. On Friday, he published a post on Fox News and his website called, “Sheriff Ordered to Remove ‘Blessed are the Peacemakers’ Decals.” The post covered the […]

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Florida Religion in School Legislation SB 436 Passes

Religion in public schools may become law thanks to Kim Daniels and Dennis Baxley - SB 436

Late on Friday, the Florida legislature passed SB 436 (also known as the “Florida Student and School Personnel Religious Liberties Act”) as a part of a compromise to pass changes to the state’s “Stand Your Ground” law. Upon becoming law, SB 436 will prohibit Florida public school districts “from discriminating against students, parents, & school personnel on basis of religious viewpoints or expression.” At […]

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Trump’s Executive Order on Religious Liberty Was Thankfully Scaled Down

religious liberty executive order signing

Today, President Trump signed an executive order on “religious liberty” — a buzz-phrase that is code for “make everyone comply with my belief system.”  In it, Trump calls for less IRS enforcement of the Johnson Amendment, which prevents churches from politicking from the pulpit, not that they’ve been very successful in enforcing it anyway.  Since the law was enacted in 1954, […]

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Americans United Sends Warning to School Aiding Good News Club

Good News Club (GNC) infiltrating schools

In March, I published a piece about Marrs Elementary School in Indiana, exposing the school’s principal for deleting negative comments on the school’s Facebook page and blocking commenters.  This started when I responded to the school’s post promoting the Good News Club and publishing the group’s permission slip. My comment was quickly deleted and I was blocked from commenting further. So […]

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Trump To Sign “Religious Liberty” Executive Order Thursday [UPDATED]

Trump anti-LGBTQ executive order

Donald Trump is expected to sign a ‘religious liberty’ executive order (EO) this Thursday as a part of the National Day of Prayer. The EO – originally leaked in February – was widely panned because of its broad language that would allow discrimination against the LGBTQ community. According to reporting at Politico, the language of the EO “hasn’t been dialed back much—if at all—since […]

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TN Public School Under Fire For Promotion of Religion

Milan High School

Milan High School in Milan, Tennessee faces criticism and possible legal action over allowing Larry Eddings – a math teacher and coach – to promote religion and potentially “teach” a class next term that would involve proselytizing Christianity to public school students. The teacher’s religious activities came to the attention of the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) recently following complaints from […]

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WV: Lesbian Couple Suing Over Harassment While Obtaining Marriage License

Samantha Brookover and Amanda Abramovich

When marriage equality became law in their hometown in 2014 following the federal court decision in Bostic v. Schaefer, Samantha Brookover and Amanda Abramovich sought out a marriage license in Gilmer County, West Virginia. They were met with derision, harassment and hatred and refused an application by the county clerk’s office. Sixteen months later (following the Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v Hodges […]

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Religious Establishment: He Who Frames the Issue

First Amendment Establishment Clause

As I often tell my students, the most important thing I learned in law school was that “he who frames the issue wins the debate.” In other words, whoever is successful in defining what’s at stake generally prevails. You can see that truism pretty vividly in debates over culture war issues like abortion and LGBTQ rights: if  abortion is the […]

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Florida Religion in School Legislation SB 436 Advances

Religion in public schools may become law thanks to Kim Daniels and Dennis Baxley - SB 436

In February, two Florida legislators proposed companion bills in the state House and Senate that would significantly weaken the church and state wall within public schools. House Bill 303 and it’s companion bill Senate Bill 436 – known collectively as the “Florida Student and School Personnel Religious Liberties Act” – would prohibit Florida public school districts “from discriminating against students, parents, & school personnel on basis of religious […]

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Religion, Taxes & School Vouchers: The Church/State Loophole

religious proselytizing - prayer in schools & promotion of religion using tax money via school vouchers

Last week, the Indianapolis Star did something called “journalism.” (These episodes have become sufficiently rare that we should applaud loudly when they occur. I’m clapping.) Snark aside, the Star followed the money, in this case, our tax dollars, which are flowing ever more generously to Indiana’s parochial schools. And as the introductory paragraphs made clear, these are schools that take both their religious identity […]

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