Category Archives: Religious Liberty

No worship services in public schools, New York mayor tells Supreme Court

Mississippi lawmakers consider ‘Tim Tebow Act’ to allow homeschoolers to play school sports

Short sighted? School halts Bible study for blind kids

How a Muslim’s beard might shape Obamacare

Baker faces discrimination complaint for refusing hateful message on cake

The future of Catholic schools and the future of America

Holt v. Hobbs: Unanimous victory for Muslim prisoner in religious rights case

A brief political history of religious exemptions

OK on Muslim inmate’s beard good for all faiths

Original sin is problematic

    First Things: According to former Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran, he was fired for being a Christian. According to Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, he was fired for insubordination and poor judgment. And according to the New York Times’s recent editorial, he was fired for speaking of his subordinates as “second-class citizens.” But the argument over the motive for Cochran’s firing and its effect on civil and religious liberties obscures a deeper disagreement over Christian conceptions of sin and the consequences of those ideas in a public work environment. More than a mere difference in theology, this disagreement has dramatic implications for pluralism.

  • Posted: 01/21/2015
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‘Clean sweep’ for bearded Muslim inmate before Supreme Court

Beards, prisons and religious freedom

At issue: State regulation of a religious program

U.S. Army removes ‘God and Country’ recruiting sign following complaint

Parents oppose district’s policy of ‘interrogating’ homeschoolers on religious beliefs

A unanimous Supreme Court endorses religious liberties in prison in Plain English

Supreme Court upholds religious rights of prisoners

Supreme Court defends freedom in landmark religious liberty case

Freedom to discuss religious beliefs at work tied to job satisfaction, finds new study

New York Times editorialist: ‘Keep your religion in the closet’

Cross removed after secular complaint

Duke vs. Franklin Graham: Which Christian spaces are off-limits to Muslim worship?

Bible banned on Religious Freedom Day over satanists seeking to pass out coloring books

Mississippi lawmakers propose bills to make Bible state book

Angst about religious liberty in America

Illinois Bible colleges sue for right to issue degrees

Becket Fund: Government is a main source of religious freedom violations

Is glorifying God a hate crime now?

Oklahoma bill seeks to protect rights of schools offering elective Bible courses

Duke University moves Muslim chant, call to prayer outside following outcry

In celebration of Religious Liberty Day, ‘Je Suis American’

    The Federalist: Over the last week and a half, leaders of nations, dignitaries, Hollywood actors, and flocks of ordinary people posted and tweeted “Je suis Charlie” pins and posters. The “Je Suis Charlie” campaign attracted praise and ire; pundits and writers voiced their opinions in favor and against the slogan and its hashtag version. Fierce arguments broke out over its meaning, use, and potency. But one thing was certain: no American who “suis Charlie” feared arrest or government persecution. Why?

  • Posted: 01/16/2015
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Duke won’t broadcast Muslim call to prayer after all

Supporters rally in Atlanta behind Kelvin Cochran

Alabama officials pass resolution declaring Winfield a ‘City under God’

High School teacher accused of promoting Christianity, giving ‘Bible cookies’ to students

North Carolina residents peacefully rally over removal of ‘religious’ veterans memorial

Thousands sign petitions calling for mayor to reinstate chief fired over Christian book

Bible classes in Oklahoma public schools would be protected from lawsuits under proposed legislation

California ‘Bible cookies’ teacher under investigation for violating U.S. Constitution

Virginia County to interrogate home-school teens about their religious beliefs

University of Chicago’s new free speech policy actually protects free speech

    Tech Dirt: Free speech and higher education seem to be at odds. The notion of expanding minds, exposing prejudices and encouraging critical thinking has taken a backseat to a bizarre “offense-free” ideal in recent years, something that can partially be traced back to our own government’s insertion into the (stunted) conversation. Tying federal funding to sexual harassment policies is definitely part of the problem. The other part appears to be a misguided thought process that equates inclusion with the elimination of any speech that might negatively affect someone. Rather than actually deal with speech issues on a case-by-case basis, universities have instead enacted broadly-written bans on campus speech.

  • Posted: 01/14/2015
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Revealed: Md. government colluded with abortion lobbyist NARAL

The Atlanta fire chief fired

    First Things: The story of Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran’s dismissal is circulating widely around the web, and for what looks to be good reason. The affair has been reported widely, with stories and follow-ups here and here and here and here. Rather than rehearse all the details of his firing, I’ll point you to Ryan Anderson’s article and analysis. There are disputes over what exactly happened: Was Cochran fired for failing to follow municipal guidelines for publishing a book? Or, were the views expressed in the book (which deemed homosexuality immoral) the true pretext for his dismissal? It seems the answer is yes, to both.

  • Posted: 01/14/2015
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Grotesque double standards on religious liberty in Atlanta

Fired for his faith

Mississippi lawmakers want to make the Bible the state book

Justices appear to favor Arizona church over sign law

Freedom of conscience bill proposed for Indiana

At Supreme Court, signs are clear that justices have doubts about Ariz. town’s law

Argument analysis: If a law turns out to be “silly” . . .

On Frank Bruni’s sincerely held beliefs

City officials might say “I’ve got to put my Bible under my desk and keep my mouth shut about what I believe,” says ousted Atlanta fire chief

Newsweek’s assault on Bible-believing Christians: A response

    The Good Book Blog: Newsweek decided to begin the New Year by attacking people who hold a high view of Scripture. (“The Bible: So Misunderstood It’s a Sin,” by Kurt Eichenwald, January 2-9 issue.) Their lead article on the Bible contains so many untrue or partially true assertions that it seemed to me that some sort of concise and readable response needed to be offered. But it would, literally, require a book-length critique to adequately address all the mischaracterizations, factual mistakes, and suggestive statements propounded in this single article. So I have decided to simply read through the article, select an occasional assertion from the article that needs a response, and try to offer a straightforward and hopefully fair response. None of these responses should be taken by a reader as sarcastic; my goal has been to offer sober-minded responses to particular assertions in an article that is full of inaccuracies.

  • Posted: 01/12/2015
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Over 40,000 sign petitions calling on Atlanta’s mayor to reinstate Christian fire chief Kelvin Cochran who was fired for his Biblical beliefs

Frank Bruni vs. religious liberty

    National Review: Frank Bruni writes that many Americans wrongly treat him as a threat to religious liberty because he is gay. The trouble is that he is a threat to religious liberty. It’s not because he’s gay. It’s because he is one of those contemporary liberals who has a conception of religious liberty that is illiberal and narrow, especially compared to the historic American practice. His op-ed makes the point abundantly clear, even as he insists that taking a broader view of religious freedom is a sign of “extremism.”

  • Posted: 01/12/2015
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Why Reed v. Town of Gilbert isn’t really a “religious rights” case

Can government play speech favorites?

City of Atlanta: No orthodox Christians need apply

Hundreds of missionaries may be forced from United Kingdom after license suspended

Billboards and the Bill of Rights

NC City forced to remove ‘Christian’ praying soldier veterans’ memorial; unable to pay $2 million to battle secular group

Atlanta Mayor fires fire chief who wrote Christian book calling homosexuality ‘perversion’

Protesters rally against Plano’s equal rights ordinance

State can sue florist who refused flowers for same-sex wedding: Judge