With reports indicating President Obama will accept the traditional role of honorary president of the Boy Scouts of America, the Secular Coalition calls on him to use his power to move the Boy Scouts beyond their "traditional values" and to practice the American values of diversity and tolerance. The Coalition also hopes the First Lady, likely to become Girl Scouts' honorary president, uses her position to promote that group's enlightened embrace of diversity.
March 9, 2009
President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President,
You and the First Lady have been invited to become Honorary Presidents of the Boy Scouts and Girls Scouts of America, respectively; this gives each of you an opportunity to advance our national conversation about diversity and tolerance. Read more »
In releasing his 2010 budget outline today, President Obama indicates that his administration will continue funding abstinence-only-until-marriage sex education, an approach that has repeatedly failed to reduce teen pregnancy. It does nothing more than prohibit sexual activity among unmarried young people, as if sexual activity after marriage has a different outcome.
To prevent teen pregnancy, the president’s budget "supports State, community-based, and faith-based efforts to reduce teen pregnancy using evidence-based models. The program will fund models that stress the important of abstinence while providing medically-accurate and age-appropriate information to youth who have already become sexually active." Read more »
While the 111th Congress has only been in session for a month, the Secular Coalition for America and its allies won the first battle to protect church-state separation when an amendment by Religious Right favorite, Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina, was defeated yesterday. Read more »
For Immediate Release: February 5, 2009 Contact: Anne Singer, 202-271-4679
Washington, DC – As a presidential candidate, Barack Obama promised to abide by "a few basic principles" that would protect the constitutional separation of church and state in his plan for an expanded White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. He was specific: "First, if you get a federal grant, you can't use that grant money to proselytize to the people you help and you can't discriminate against them – or against the people you hire – on the basis of their religion. Second, federal dollars that go directly to churches, temples, and mosques can only be used on secular programs." Read more »
President-elect Obama announced the program for his inauguration this week, and it begins with an invocation from the Rev. Rick Warren, an evangelical mega church pastor. Although Obama and his spokesperson insist his inaugural will be inclusive and offer diverse viewpoints, the choice of two Protestants to open and close the ceremony suggests otherwise. Read more »
For Immediate Release: Dec. 18, 2008 Contact: Anne Singer, 202-271-4679
WASHINGTON, DC - The Bush Administration today implemented the Provider Conscience Regulation (RIN 0991-AB48) through the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Its purpose is to allow medical personnel and volunteers to refuse to participate in any practice they find morally objectionable. This rule has been widely criticized for the effects it will have on OB/GYN care; however, other areas of patient care will also be compromised under this rule and many groups of Americans could see their medical treatment undermined as a result. Read more »