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For several months last year, I posted about a huge sign in Texas that was the center of a lengthy church/state separation battle that’s still playing out to this day.


That 18-foot-wide “JESUS welcomes you to Hawkins” sign was intended to welcome visitors to the city, but the Freedom From Religion Foundation argued that this was government endorsement of religion. After all, it was put up by Mayor Will Rogers.

Rogers’ defense was that the sign wasn’t religious. (Seriously.) At one point, he even compared Jesus to Superman, not recognizing the irony.

Now, Patrick Michels of the Texas Observer has written a lengthy article detailing this story from start to finish… or wherever we’re at right now.

The article covers just how big an asshole Mayor Rogers is, why someone alerted FFRF to the sign in this overwhelmingly religious town, and why we still don’t exactly know how this story will end.

Maybe my favorite bit is this exchange between Rogers and a member of the city council:

In May 2015, Rogers proposed a resolution that would let him join the city fire department. When Council member Wayne Kirkpatrick argued that the move would amount to a conflict of interest, the exchange turned mean.

You’re a conflict of interest, Wayne,” Rogers huffed.

I’ve heard better retorts on an elementary school playground.

It’s a great article, though. Be sure to read the whole thing.

(Thanks to Brian for the link)

Hemant Mehta is the founder of, a YouTube creator, podcast co-host, and author of multiple books about atheism. He can be reached at @HemantMehta.

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