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is the Communications Associate for Americans United for Separation of Church and State, and appears courtesy of AU.

Hawkeye Revival: Iowa Governor Formally Asks His State To Pray And Repent

Simon Brown

In a move straight out of Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback’s playbook, Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad issued an official proclamation instructing citizens to pray and repent and presided over a revival event on the grounds of the state capitol.

In April, Branstad signed the proclamation urging everyone in the state of Iowa to repent and pray daily. He also invited them to join in a day of prayer, fasting and repentance on July 14 on the grounds of the state capitol. Read more



Simon Brown

It seems more and more Americans with a religious affiliation are becoming less and less happy with President Barack Obama’s job performance – and that might be a good thing.

A poll released by Gallup last week found that Obama’s approval rating for January through June was 43 percent, which represents a 5 percent drop from the average rating for his entire presidency. Read more

President Obama, Gallup Poll


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Simon Brown

The Obama administration has been investigating private school voucher programs in Wisconsin and Louisiana for possible racial discrimination and failure to accommodate special-needs children, putting the governors of those two states on the defensive as they try to explain away some pretty serious accusations. Read more

Scott Walker, Bobby Jindal, U.S. Department of Justice, segregation, special-needs students, school choice


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Simon Brown

When creationism is taught in public schools, we often blame it on problematic state laws or textbooks published by fundamentalist ministries. But in plenty of cases, individual teachers work to indoctrinate students through creationist teachings – even if their bosses don’t approve. Read more

Atlanta Public Schools, Anquinette Jones, Henry W. Grady High School, The Southerner


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Simon Brown

When creationism is taught in public schools, we often blame it on problematic state laws or textbooks published by fundamentalist ministries. But in plenty of cases, individual teachers work to indoctrinate students through creationist teachings – even if their bosses don’t approve. Read more

Atlanta Public Schools, Anquinette Jones, Henry W. Grady High School, The Southerner


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Simon Brown

As we continue to observe fallout in the wake of the Hobby Lobby decision, which curtails workers’ access to birth control, it seems an unexpected problem has emerged: Some allies of President Barack Obama want exemptions from laws, too. Read more

Barack Obama, executive order, Rick Warren, Michael Wear, D. Michael Lindsay, Hobby Lobby, Affordable Care Act, contraception mandate, Religious Freedom Restoration Act


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Simon Brown

Some early reactions to the Supreme Court’s decision in the Hobby Lobby case suggested that the ruling is too narrow to cause much real harm. But given that the high court just said corporations are people with religious freedom rights, and those rights are more important than women’s health, it seems the decision is a likely Pandora’s Box. Read more

Hobby Lobby, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, closely held corporation, Eternal Word Television Network, Religious Freedom Restoration Act


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Simon Brown

The U.S. National Park Service says the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., commemorates “service, sacrifice, unity, and victory.” After last night, however, they might as well scratch “unity” off that list. Read more

World War II Memorial, Sen. Rob Portman, Rep. Bill Johnson, Franklin D Roosevelt, FDR D-Day prayer, Kurt Vonnegut, Niki Tsongas


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Simon Brown

The U.S. National Park Service says the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., commemorates “service, sacrifice, unity, and victory.” After last night, however, they might as well scratch “unity” off that list. Read more

World War II Memorial, Sen. Rob Portman, Rep. Bill Johnson, Franklin D Roosevelt, FDR D-Day prayer, Kurt Vonnegut, Niki Tsongas


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Simon Brown

Church-state separation has come under assault in recent times in North Carolina, so it came as a pleasant surprise when a city council voted this week not to support problematic school prayer legislation. Read more

North Carolina SB 370, Greensboro City Council, Councilman Tony Wilkins, Councilman Mike Barber


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