In Conversation: Antonin Scalia "On the eve of a new Supreme Court session, the firebrand justice discusses gay rights and media echo chambers, Seinfeld and the Devil, and how much he cares about his intellectual legacy ("I don’t")." [more inside]
In 1971, the newly-created US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hired a bunch of freelance photographers to collectively document environmental issues around the country. They were given free rein to shoot whatever they wanted, and the project, named Documerica
, lasted through 1977. After 40 years, the EPA is now encouraging photographers to take current versions of the original Documerica photos and are showcasing them on flickr at State of the Environment
. There are location challenges
, and a set has been created with some of the submissions, making side-by-side comparisons
. [more inside]
Leaving the Witness. "In one of the most restrictive, totalitarian countries in the world, for the first time in my life, I had the freedom to think." [more inside]
'Homeland,' Obama’s Show.
The award winning TV show does little to alleviate the myths and misconceptions about Arabs and Muslims, writes Joseph Massad
, a scholar
at Columbia University. "The racist representation of Arabs is so exponential, even for American television [..] that one does not know where to begin." [more inside]
Burl Cain, the warden of Angola, Louisiana's largest prison, uses religion to control and subdue the prison population.
(幸福の科学), also called Happy Science, is a relatively new religious and spiritual movement, founded in Japan in October 1986. The organization is gaining ground world-wide, with the international headquarter office in central Tokyo, 6 local temples located in London, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seoul and Taiwan, and an additional 37 local offices around the world. The group's leader, Master Ryuho Okawa, has is not limiting the scope of the movement to politics, and in May 2009 the Happiness Realization Party
was formed, with over 300 HRP candidates running for the coming general election
. To provide background on the religion and political movement, here is a little investigation of Happy Science
by MeFi's own shii
[via mefi projects
] [more inside]
Keynes & Marx thought
"that productivity would grow sufficiently to allow our needs to be met with very little labour," and that humankind's biggest preoccupation in the future would be leading lives of comfortable (or comparative) leisure
, that has not yet come to pass. But why?** Yochai Benkler
), for one, is working on it
... [more inside]
"Killing others is not loving them.”
--meet US Army Captain Peter D. Brown, just granted Conscientious Objector status due to his religious beliefs and honorably discharged after first being denied and taking them to court---only
224 applicants were approved for it during 02-06,
out of 2.3 million serving. [more inside]
Separation of church and state? Not among America's holiest congressmen
. Some surprising candidates
The dirty underbelly
-- I'm sick and tired of these hypocritical Hoosier legislators who think that my sex life or relationship status is any of their business. Do I intrude on who they're sleeping with? I didn't, but I'm going to start now. ...Consider this a call to
arms gossip. ...
-- Bilerico, a GLBT blog in Indiana, fighting their proposed state Constitutional Amendment to ban marriage and all other rights for gay and lesbian couples and families.
Through a Glass, Darkly
How the Christian right is reimagining U.S. history--from Harpers. ...producing a flood of educational texts with which to wash away the stains of secular history. ...
Why do atheists care about religion?
(youtube). Some of this video is factual
, however some states
do not have these clauses in their constitutions.
However, not even being able to testify in court
because you are an atheist is downright frightening.
the American God? The herders of this remote mountain village know little about America, but have learned from those who run a US-funded aid program about the American God. A Christian God. ...
Talk To Action and Mother Jones mag team up for e-conference tomorrow: ...a day of thoughtful reflections on, and vigorous discussion of the role of religion and government -- as intended by the framers of the constitution, and the situation we face today.
(MoJo's December issue is all about the role of religion and government, including this on Reconstructionists: A Nation Under God.
) New and old media officially collaborating to highlight specific issues and futher debate--a first?
Anti-Defamation League speaks up against the Christianizing of America--
They're calling for a communal strategy for confronting the political and cultural initiatives of religious conservative groups
, and naming the Arlington Group,
Focus on the Family, The American Family Association and the Family Research Council as some of those responsible for the infrastructures throughout the country designed not just to promote traditional “Christian values,” but to actively pursue that restoration of a Christian nation.
Opinions differ, of course.
Foxman anticipates them in his speech, Religion in America’s Public Square: Are We Crossing the Line?: ... On one hand, there is an extreme element in the community that believes it is unsafe to confront Christianity. ... There are also those who say that because evangelicals are friends of Israel, “don’t fight them;” “don’t make them angry;” “don’t upset them.” . ...
All Saints Episcopal Church
recently received a letter warning of a revocation of its tax exempt status
due to its "anti-war sermons
"Despite the gravity of the problem, I believe there is an answer.
Put simply, it is this: offer greater latitude for religious speech and symbols in public debate
, but also impose a stricter ban
on state financing of religious institutions and activities."
A proposal byNoah Feldman
for redrawing the line between church and state
Little-Known U.S. Document Signed by President Adams Proclaims America's Government Is Secular
Some people today assert that the United States government came from Christian foundations. They argue that our political system represents a Christian ideal form of government and that Jefferson, Madison, et al, had simply expressed Christian values while framing the Constitution. If this proved true, then we should have a wealth of evidence to support it, yet just the opposite proves the case.
Although, indeed, many of America's colonial statesmen practiced Christianity, our most influential Founding Fathers broke away from traditional religious thinking. The ideas of the Great Enlightenment that began in Europe had begun to sever the chains of monarchical theocracy. These heretical European ideas spread throughout early America. Instead of relying on faith, people began to use reason and science as their guide. The humanistic philosophical writers of the Enlightenment, such as Locke, Rousseau, and Voltaire, had greatly influenced our Founding Fathers and Isaac Newton's mechanical and mathematical foundations served as a grounding post for their scientific reasoning.
A call for Christian lawyers
who have worked for the ACLU
. The ACLU tries to be balanced
, but considering the amount of effort they have put forth to inhibit Christian influence from/to the government, should a Christian lawyer work for them?
Meet the WallBuilders
--an organization that promotes the return of American public life to its religious-based heritage, according to USA Today.
And the Congressional Pastor's Briefings
may be of interest too: WallBuilders has been privileged to bring ministers from across the nation to Washington, DC, for an intimate briefing session with some of the top Christian Senators and Representatives now serving in Congress. The Members brief pastors on a variety of issues related to Biblical values as well as share their hearts regarding their own faith and its application to public office. ...
Wallbuilders or Mythbuilders
provides a debunking of 8 historical fallacies of the group, concluding that:...In that sense, then, the name “Wallbuilders” is correct: the organization is building unnecessary walls of prejudice in an onlooking world, a word desperately needing to hear about the One who has “broken down the middle wall of division”...
No Sunday shopping
in Nova Scotia (apparently some were for
currently under consideration in the Ohio General Assembly would force public schools to "display the official motto of the United States of America 'In God We Trust' and the official motto of Ohio 'With God, All Things Are Possible' in each classroom, auditorium, and cafeteria of each school building in the district." Ohio Public Radio reports here.
"God told me to strike at al Qaida and I
struck them, and then he instructed me to
strike at Saddam, which I did..."
does this kind of talk coming from our president and the most powerful man in concern you? - or reassure you?
House Resolution 153
recognizes the need for the American public to pray and fast in order to secure the blessings of "Providence" (read: Jesus) for our Armed Forces. Seriously. "Resolved that the President should issue a proclamation designating a day for prayer & fasting for all people of the United States". I take back the thing I said earlier about the Freedom Fries being the stupidest Congressional legislation I'd ever seen.
"if you like God in government, get ready for the Rapture"
a word from bill moyers via drudge
on the party now in control of the US government - and a word from garrison kiellor on one of its newest members
complete text here
. anyone else uneasy with the direction the county seems to be headed?
Certainly, no power to prescribe any religious exercise, or to assume authority in religious discipline, has been delegated to the General Government.
Religion, Government, and Media
When all three are combined, as in Saudi Arabia, you get interesting newspaper articles. It would seem very strange to have a mainstream paper such as the New York Times having a section like this.
is at it again.
Is the fact that he is able to get away with things like this an indication of a backlash against the more open
years of Democrats in the White House?
Is this secretly what the American public wants?
Muslim congressional intern removed from White House
During a meeting between Muslim community leaders and the White House office of faith-based initiatives, too. Random administrative error, or religious profiling?
Dubya wishes to end "discrimination" against churches.
In regards to his recent faith-based services funding thing, Dubya speaks to the religous folks he's targeting. Apparently, he feels the separation of church and state is "discrimination."
Is there any vacancy left in Canada for about four years?
Christian States of America according to President Dubya. Government should
not fund international family-planning groups
, but should
fund faith-based programs
. Someone please pinch me so I can
wake up and discover this is just a bad dream.
Is it me, or does this
smack of hypocrisy? I mean, on our money are the words "In God We Trust."
And when about to give testimony in court, we swear on the bible. I think some judges need to get their heads out of their a$$es.