SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE: “Alabama’s Ten Commandments Bigot Judge, Ray Moore, Suspended for Rest of Term for Defying Federal Judiciary Over Same-sex Marriage” ☮

ray-mooreThe Alabama Court of the Judiciary today suspended Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore for the rest of his term in office.

The Court ruled that Moore violated the canons of judicial ethics by ordering Alabama’s probate judges to defy a federal court injunction requiring them to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples on a non-discriminatory basis. This is the second time in 13 years that Moore has been sanctioned as a result of ethics complaints filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

h/t: SPLC

CONSERVTIVE CHRISTIAN THEOCRACY: “2016 Republican Party Platform = More Theocracy, Less Democracy” / Secular Talk / Cenk Uygur, and John Iadarola ☮

More details are coming out about the Republican Party platform, the leaks appear to show the GOP is officially moving even further to the right. Cenk Uygur and John Iadarola (ThinkTank), hosts of The Young Turks, break the latest details on the Republican party platform. Tell us what you think in the comment section below.

“The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don’t look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Four years ago, the platform called state court decisions legalizing same-sex marriage “an assault on the foundations of our society.” Since then, the Supreme Court backed the right of same-sex couples to wed. But in two days of deliberations this week, platform committee members rejected all attempts to sound a more moderate tone on the matter.

“A man and a woman family is the best, ideal vehicle for raising children,” according to James Bopp, a GOP delegate from Indiana, and a prominent conservative attorney.”

SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE: “California City Council Will No Longer Consider Giving $2.5 Million Grant to Catholic High School” / Friendly Atheist / Hemant Mehta☮

Church, State and the Almighty DollarIf that sounds like a complete violation of church/state separation, you’d be correct. Mater Dei High School can pay for its own renovations; the taxpayers shouldn’t be funding them.

And that’s what the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s Legal Fellow Ryan Jayne said in a letter to the Council a couple of weeks ago.

We are writing to object to the proposed grant to Mater Dei because distributing public money to a private religious school violates both the Federal Constitution and the California state constitution.

The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment prohibits the government from supporting religious activities with public funds… The city of Santa Ana violates this principle when it funds the expansion of a private parochial school.

The letter worked. The City Council informed Jayne recently that the agenda item to give the money to the Catholic school has been removed from consideration.

FFRF is elated at the city’s about-face.

“We were dismayed that Santa Ana was possibly going to channel millions of taxpayer dollars to a sectarian religious entity,” says FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor. “We’re glad that it saw the light.”

That’s $2.5 million that the city can now use for public institutions, just as it should be.

h/t: Friendly Atheist