Archive for June, 2004

Religious Right Research

It has become the story that will not die: Why was the Rev. Sun Myung Moon given a robe and crown in a U.S. Senate office building March 23, and why did several members of Congress attend? This morning, a Moon front group, the Interreligious and International Federation for World Peace, held a press conference in Washington, D.C., at the […] Read More

Church Politicking

The Rev. Jerry Johnston of Oakland Park, Kan., recently organized a group of local clergy to argue that churches must get more involved in politics. Upset about the Kansas legislature’s defeat of a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, Johnston began distributing a pamphlet containing background information on incumbent state legislators from the area. If they supported the amendment against gay […] Read More

Religious Right Research

An upcoming issue of The Nation (July 12) will carry a terrific piece about former Christian Coalition Executive Director Ralph Reed’s recent work on behalf of legalized gambling.

When Reed ran the hyper-moralistic Coalition in the 1990s, he denounced state-sponsored gambling as anti-family. As Jack Newfield points out in The Nation, Reed once called the spread of gambling “a […] Read More

Religion in Public Life

North Carolina’s Supreme Court issued a controversial ruling yesterday when it chose to compel a lower court judge to use references to God when he enters the courtroom and when swearing in witnesses, according to The Washington Post.

In an effort to respect the increasing number of non-Christians and people of diverse beliefs served by his court, District Judge […] Read More

Religious Right Research

Fallout continues from revelations that the Rev. Sun Myung Moon was crowned “king of America” at a ceremony held in the Senate Dirksen Office Building in March.

Yesterday, The New York Times ran a story about the controversy, noting, with some understatement, that the royal congressional recognition of the controversial Korean evangelist (and self-proclaimed messiah) is “causing a bit of […] Read More

Church Politicking, Religious Right Research

In election years, it’s not uncommon for the Internal Revenue Service to issue a letter to non-profit groups, including houses of worship, reminding them that they may not intervene in partisan politics.

This year, the IRS is taking an additional step. It recently issued a three-page letter to officials with seven political parties reminding them not to lure non-profits […] Read More

Religion in Public Schools, Religious Right Research

The Washington Post has an interesting item today about the Rev. Sun Myung Moon’s March 23 “coronation” ceremony at the Dirksen Senate Office Building in Washington, D.C. During the event, Moon and his wife, dressed in flowing royal robes, had golden crowns placed on their heads, as members of Congress participated or looked on.

While it may sound kind […] Read More

Religion in Public Life

The role of religion in American politics is getting a great deal of press recently, so much so that TIME magazine devoted its cover story to exploring just how religious America wants their public officials to be. Of all likely voters, only 28% felt it very important that a presidential candidate be a religious person, according to the TIME […] Read More

Marriage & Sexuality

“I think it is very important for people who are serving [in public office] to make sure there is a separation of church and state,” said President George W. Bush at a press conference yesterday. While we welcome the president as a newly minted defender of the First Amendment, his remarks stand in stark contrast to some of the […] Read More

Religion in Public Life, Religious Right Research

Religious Right activists often insist that America is a Christian nation. Although most Americans are indeed Christians, the TV preachers who talk about America as a “Christian Nation” mean something more — that America should be officially Christian. Debate over that issue has erupted in the Lone Star State, where the Republican Party of Texas recently reaffirmed a platform plank […] Read More