Category: Church and State

America’s Christian Right: Down But Not Out

Christian Right The ‘Christian Right’ has been a major power broker in U.S. politics for 30 years, having played especially important roles in the 1980, 1994 and 2004 presidential elections, and in Republican administrations since the tenure of former President Ronald Reagan.

It appeared at its apex after the 2004 ‘values vote’ election, but now seems on the decline under President Barack Obama. The Christian Right has no clear leader or central movement organization to guide it, and many younger evangelicals are turning away from their parents’ emphasis on a narrow set of contentious social issues.

Nevertheless, it remains a powerful political force capable of resurgence, Forbes writes.

Christian Right organizations are experiencing increased contributions and activism, as Obama and a Democratic Congress push socially progressive legislation.

Protests agains the Mormon Church; plus: Why the Mormons fight against Gay Marriage

Protest against Mormon Church A couple thousand people gathered outside the Capitol in Sacramento this afternoon to rally for the legalization of same-sex marriages just days after voters imposed a constitutional ban.

The gathering follows several similar events around the Bay Area and California. Earlier today, more than 400 people gathered outside the distinctive Mormon Temple in Oakland to protest the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints‘ support of Proposition 8.

DMV license photo won’t be required for religious group

Real ID A handful of people who believe digitized photos on state driver’s licenses could be the beginning of the biblical “mark of the beast” will receive special licenses from the Division of Motor Vehicles in Charleston, West Virginia, today.

Under the plan, followers of pastor Butch Paugh will be allowed to have their license photos taken at the Capitol DMV office and then removed from the computer system.

When Church Autonomy Is Tyranny

Ignorance is the enemy of liberty. That truth has never been so forcefully made as it has been with the rescue of the hundreds of children from the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints compound in Eldorado, Texas. As the clergy abuse crisis within the Roman Catholic Church has proved, Americans are all too willing to ignore evidence of child abuse when it occurs in the context of religious organizations.

Pasadena church wants apology from IRS

The Internal Revenue Service has told a prominent Pasadena church that it has ended its lengthy investigation into a 2004 antiwar sermon, church leaders said Sunday. But the agency wrote in its letter to All Saints Episcopal Church that officials still considered the sermon to have been illegal, prompting the church to seek clarification, a corrected record and an apology from the IRS, the church’s rector told standing-room-only crowds of parishioners at Sunday’s services.

IRS combats fake-church tax scams

You won’t find these Arizona religious groups in any neighborhood directory of churches. They don’t have temples. They don’t hold services. Instead, state and federal authorities say they are individually owned corporations, called corporations sole, that were set up to dodge income taxes. Promoters of the schemes rake in large fees and, in one case, used them as part of a pyramid scheme, authorities say.