Wichita Elementary School Takes Down Display About Islam After Conservatives Flip Out

When students attended the first day of school at Minneha Core Knowledge Magnet Elementary in Wichita, Kansas last week, they saw a bulletin board displaying the core beliefs of one of the world’s largest religions: The Five Pillars of Islam.

As far as displays go, this one pretty unimpressive. And uninformative. There’s almost literally no useful information in that display. I mean, it doesn’t even explain what the Five Pillars are…

But somehow, conservatives found a reason to freak out about it. The Facebook page Prepare to Take America Back posted the image with a caption that made a factual claim with no basis in reality:

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Texas Church Sets Up Shop Across the Street from an Elementary School and Offers ‘Free Cookies and Prayer’

This is a guest post by Joe Zamecki.

As I type this, the church next door to my house is focusing its attention on Katy Elementary School which is across the street from us. It looks like Orientation Day, so all of the new students and their parents are at the school, late in the day, and they’re all very busy, moving from one area to another.

The church is medium-sized, which in this town, Katy, Texas, means that the building is about the size of a high school gymnasium. It’s a Methodist church, and a somewhat active one.

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Alabama State Senator Files Unnecessary ‘Merry Christmas’ Bill

Remember when Texas Governor Rick Perry signed a law making it legal to say “Merry Christmas” in public schools — even though no one ever said it was illegal — and also allowing for religious holiday displays?

Now, Alabama State Senator Gerald Allen (R-What else?) is set to to pass a similar bill in his state:

Allen said he is bringing the bill to protect schools from litigation.

“I’m convinced that there is an undeniable secular progressive agenda to remove all religious freedoms from the public square and that includes our public schools,” Allen said.

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Atheist Family in Ontario Finally Puts an End to Public School Distribution of Holy Books

Last year, I wrote about how, in Toronto, the Gideons wanted to distribute Bibles to fifth grade students and how the District School Board of Niagara was letting them do it.

Rene and Anna Chouinard, who have three kids in the district, attempted to put a stop to that for years, beginning in 2009. They told the school board that if the Gideons could distribute Bibles to children, then they should be able to distribute copies of Dan Barker‘s Just Pretend: A Free Thought Book for Children and Losing Faith in Faith: From Preacher to Atheist. That year, the school board ended up saying no to both kinds of books.

The year after, the board changed their policy to allow for the distribution of all religious materials. The Chouinards said Fine! Let us distribute our atheist books!… and the school board said no.

Huh?! The Bibles were okay, but the atheist books were not? What gives?

Only last year did a court finally agree to look at the case.

It took a year, but the Chouinards have finally prevailed!

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Hawaiian Atheists’ Lawsuit Alleges That Churches Have Deprived Public Schools of $5,600,000

Mitch Kahle, founder of the Hawaii Citizens for the Separation of State and Church, has been a successful activist for a few years now:

In 2010, he protested an invocation prayer in the Hawaii State Legislature and won a lawsuit after being roughed up and arrested by police for “disorderly conduct.”

Last year, after a public school partnered up with a local church to raise money for a Christian charity, he wrote a letter to the Department of Education and stopped the Constitutional violation.

This is a guy who knows how to stand up for his principles, even if they’re unpopular.

Now, along with his partner Holly Huber, he’s tackling his biggest case yet.

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