Posted inThe Secular

Should Christmas trees be banned in tax-funded public spaces?

Reading Time: 3 minutes Although I’m a committed nontheist and ardent church-state separationist, I’m not inflexible about it. Which is to say I see no good reason to oppose Christmas trees, for example, in public, tax-supported spaces. It’s been a centuries-long American civic tradition to erect Christmas trees all over creation, so to speak—in public and private spaces—and these […]

Posted inPolitics

Nancy Pelosi’s swan song implies America is a Christian nation

Reading Time: 3 minutes US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s epoch-ending, gavel-passing speech Thursday on the floor of the House demonstrated—the Founding Fathers’ vision of secular governance notwithstanding—how casually and normatively embedded Christianity remains at the summit of American government. Speaker Pelosi’s “swan song” as the revered, two-decade leader of Congressional Democrats and final arbiter of House public-policy priorities was […]

Posted inLaw

Police-led Christian prayer vigil blurs separation of church and state

Reading Time: 3 minutes On April 28th, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments in Rojas, et al. v. City of Ocala, Fl, an important separation of church and state case brought by the American Humanist Association (AHA) that requires all our attention. In 2014, the Ocala City Police Department (OPD) planned and facilitated an hour-long, Christian-revival-style […]

Posted inPolitics

The Students’ Religious Belief Protection Act protects no one

Reading Time: 4 minutes Columnist’s note: My Monday essay titled “Hearing loss, failing eyesight, and the struggles we try to hide“ did not properly display temporarily but that glitch is now fixed. The correctly displayed article is accessible via the linked headline in this note. The so-called Students’ Religious Belief Protection Act, introduced Feb. 8 in the Oklahoma state […]

Posted inUncategorized

When My Rules Trump Yours

Reading Time: 3 minutes I’ve had a little experience with nonprofits that fund projects in the developing world. Here are a couple of the culture clashes we’ve had and how they parallel clashes between the Christian church and both society and reality.

Posted inUncategorized

What Do Churches Have to Hide? The Solution Is Simple.

Reading Time: 15 minutes Nonprofit organizations in the U.S. make a contract with society: you give us tax-exempt status, and we’ll open our books to show that we’ve spent our money wisely. The one exception is churches. Do churches have something to hide? Or does this exception unfairly make churches look like they do? Here are 8 arguments against opening books (refuted) and 11 arguments for.

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