Secular Coalition for American to begin lobbying

A national atheist group plans to organize a lobbying group in Tennessee to advocate for stronger separation of church and state.

The Washington, D.C.-based Secular Coalition for America announced plans Tuesday to set up a local chapter aimed at giving local atheists more political clout.

It's part of an effort to organize coalition chapters in all 50 states.

"There are 40 million Americans who don't identify with any religion, but our political influence has been limited because we have not been organized," said Edwina Rogers, executive director of the coalition, in an email Monday. "This year, that changes."

he coalition, made up of 11 atheist and secular humanist groups, has focused on federal lobbying in the past. Now it is concerned about state laws, like the so-called "Monkey Bill" in Tennessee that allows teachers to question evolution.

Critics see the bill, which was passed earlier this year, as an excuse to teach creationism.

Laura Anderson Youngblood, communications manager for the Secular Coalition, said the first step in Tennessee is an organizational meeting with potential members, to be held by conference call on Tuesday.

More at WBIR News

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found at wiscatheists

Affordable Care Act upheld, 5-4 - John Roberts sides with majority upholding law

In Plain English: The Affordable Care Act, including its individual mandate that virtually all Americans buy health insurance, is constitutional. There were not five votes to uphold it on the ground that Congress could use its power to regulate commerce between the states to require everyone to buy health insurance. However, five Justices agreed that the penalty that someone must pay if he refuses to buy insurance is a kind of tax that Congress can impose using its taxing power. That is all that matters. Because the mandate survives, the Court did not need to decide what other parts of the statute were constitutional, except for a provision that required states to comply with new eligibility requirements for Medicaid or risk losing their funding. On that question, the Court held that the provision is constitutional as long as states would only lose new funds if they didn't comply with the new requirements, rather than all of their funding.

(from AMERICAblog)

Supreme Court health care reform decision

Upholding ACA: Roberts, Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, Kagan
Dissent: Scalia, Kennedy, Thomas, Alito



We received word today of the death of one of our members, Joe "catman" Lively.

From the Weatherford Telegram:

"A 65-year old man Fort Worth man, identified as Joseph Douglas Lively, was killed on April 2 when the motorcycle he was driving collided with a flatbed tractor trailer.

According to a report released by the Weatherford Police Department, the incident occurred at 3:42 p.m.

Officers were dispatched to the 1100 block of Fort Worth Hwy. According to the report, the flatbed tractor trailer, driven by Marvin Green, 71, of Dallas, was traveling westbound and attempting to turn left into a business when the motorcycle, traveling eastbound, struck the flatbed trailer. Lively was pronounced deceased at the scene.

Investigators are still actively reviewing the accident and haven't determined if charges will be filed or not.
"

There is a discussion thread located HERE

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