‘church and state’

Mitt Romney Tries Sex Both Ways, and Loses

Ever obsessed with pornography, “decency” activists are going after Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney for being soft on porn while sitting on the board of the Marriott hotel chain. What a pleasure to see conservative Christian sharks eating one of their own. It’s the delicious sequel to the American Family Association demanding that (Mormon) Brigham Young University refuse future million-dollar donations from the Marriott family because the cash is “tainted by porn.” Romney’s latest critics include Phil Burress, the self-proclaimed “porn addict” who’s trying to clean up Ohio (his motto: porn ruins your marriage, and if it doesn’t, gays will);…

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South Carolina Dishonors the God of Mercy

Top lawmakers in South Carolina are supporting a proposal that would require women seeking abortions there to view an ultrasound image of their fetus before they could have the procedure. The governor, a congressman, and various state legislators say they hope it will discourage women from getting abortions—a public policy goal that violates the sanctity of our secular nation. Some hypocritical legislators say a woman deserves complete information before making such an important choice; their concern doesn’t include requiring women to look at videos of open-heart surgery or hysterectomy before those far-more dangerous procedures. This kind of thing underlines the…

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Gay Or Irish? Parade Organizers Force Choice

“Buy some corned beef,” my local butcher smiled this morning. “Today, everybody’s Irish.” Well, apparently not everybody. In New York City–home to 2 million Irish-Americans, half as many as in all of Ireland–organizers of the huge Fifth Avenue parade have once again banned Irish-American gay groups from marching. And so the city’s most powerful Irish-American politician, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, is boycotting the parade. As every Irish person, gay and straight, should. Unless, of course, hatred, exclusion, and obsession with others’ private lives is truly what it means to be Irish. How anti-Irish is being gay? Last year, John…

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Challenging the Faith-Based Payoff

Certain words brand you as a screwball in America today: conspiracy theorist. Elvis sighting. Pacifist. Atheist. Yes, atheist. On Sunday, ABC News noted a pending Supreme Court case, which is testing the constitutionality of the Bush Administration’s Office of Faith-Based Initiatives. This is the Jesus-fueled gravy train that’s been giving away billions of taxpayer dollars to explicitly religious groups for the delivery of social services. Catholic Charities of New York, $2,500,000 just last year. Roseland Christian Ministries, $800,000. You get the idea. President Bush has also made a fundamental change in the way this taxpayer money can be spent by…

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