A School Prayer Bill in Mississippi Will Allow for More Student-Led, Administration-Supported Proselytization

Let’s get this straight right now: Students are allowed to pray in school. No one has ever taken that right away from them. What public schools can’t do is force everyone to say a prayer over the loudspeaker, at a football game, at an assembly, etc.

So you have to wonder why Senate Bill 2633 (PDF) in Mississippi is even necessary. The bill, called the “Mississippi Student Religious Liberties Act of 2013,” would take those rights and then tack on a whole bunch of illegal methods of pushing religion in school.

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City Council Member Who Wants Prayer at Meetings: ‘This is a Government Institution, Not a Secular Institution’

In nearby Meade County, the Commissioners want to “show their solidarity” with their Rapid City counterparts by praying at their next meeting.

At least one person (not on the council) had the good sense to speak out against it: [Read more...]

Secular Coalition for America’s Lobby Day Approaching

The Secular Coalition for America is sponsoring a Lobby Day this April. With the schedule the way it is, it almost seems like a full-fledged conference. The event takes place April 24th-26th, they’re expecting to be addressed by two sitting members of Congress as well as a White House official, and the panels are focused on issues we can actually change through legislation (e.g. Science education, religion and taxes, etc).

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Kentucky Bill Would Allow Discrimination Based on ‘Sincerely Held’ Religious Beliefs

Human rights groups in Kentucky are fighting a proposed bill that would allow people to sidestep anti-discrimination laws if they could justify their actions with “sincerely held religious beliefs.”

House Bill 279, sponsored by conservative Democrat Rep. Bob Damron and recently passed in the State Senate, would strengthen a person’s ability to “ignore state regulations or laws that contradict his or her ‘sincerely held’ religious beliefs.” Gay rights groups say this could legalize discrimination against LGBT people on the basis of certain religious beliefs that maintain homosexuality is wrong: [Read more...]

Atheist Isn’t Allowed to Give Invocation at County Meeting Because He’s Not Part of a Tax-Exempt Religious Institution

It was last summer when two young atheists tried to put a stop to the Christian prayers being recited at meetings of the Hamilton County Commissioners (in Tennessee) by filing a lawsuit:

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