Exemptions from Employment Discrimination Law

Proposed Expansion of Discrimination Protections The proposed Employment Non-Discrimination Act adds gender identity and sexual orientation to the protected classes of race, religion, gender, national origin, age and disability. Currently only 16 states and D.C. have laws that prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity and federal employment discrimination laws do not recognize …

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Religious discrimination in the military

Background A 2004 report on religious preferences of military personnel conducted by the Population Reference Bureau found that 21% of service members identified as Atheists or as having ―no religion.(1) The report also revealed that 35% identified as Protestants, 22% as Catholic/Orthodox, 11% as ―Other Christian‖ and less than .5% as Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, and …

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True Religious Freedom Means No Government Involvement

By Amanda Knief Wednesday, the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on “The State of Religious Liberty in the United States.” The United States is the most religiously diverse country in the world. In no other nation can you find as many varied religious groups, beliefs and practices as there are here. The Founders’ recognized …

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Forcing Your Beliefs on Others is Not Religious Freedom

First it was doctors who wouldn’t perform abortions and pharmacists who wouldn’t fill prescriptions for contraceptives. Several years back a Chicago police officer sought an exemption from an assignment to guard an abortion clinic. And most recently, a town clerk in New York state refused to sign the marriage license of a lesbian couple who …

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Straight Christians Only

‘Nonsectarian’ Prayer Still Alienates Nontheists

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals handed down an important ruling for church-state separation last week, affirming that officials in Forsyth County, North Carolina, were wrong to open an estimated four-fifths of public meetings with overtly sectarian prayers that specifically referenced Jesus Christ. “[P]rayer in governmental settings carries risks,” wrote Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III …

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A Godless Passover

The following is an excerpt from The Washington Post’s On Faith… It’s only fitting for two religions to celebrate Passover. For me, Passover represents twos. It’s true and false, disgusting and uplifting, religious and secular, traditional and nontraditional. There is no historical or archaeological evidence that Moses existed, that Israelites were slaves in Egypt, or …

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Federal funding of religious institutions

Both secular and religiously-affiliated entities have long received funding from the government to provide social services. Until the mid-1990s the constitutional rights of taxpayers and social service recipients were protected because entities receiving federal financial assistance had to abide by employment non-discrimination laws and constitutional religious liberty protections. Religiously-affiliated organizations like Catholic Charities, Jewish Federation, …

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Religious control of sex education harms children

Since 1981, the federal government has allocated more than $1 billion for abstinence-only-until marriage programs throughout the nation. President Obama’s 2010 budget has zeroed out funding for two abstinence-only-until-marriage sex education programs making it clear that he wants no more congressional funding for failed abstinence-only programs. In its place, President Obama’s budget has created a …

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Sex education
Spreading Happiness

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