Civic

10 Commandments Monuments Barred from Capital Lawns

August 1, 2000

Source: The Courier-Journal

On August 1, 2000, The Courier Journal reported that "In a written order that follows his ruling last week from the bench, U.S. District Judge Joseph Hood has struck down as unconstitutional a state resolution calling for a monument to the Ten Commandments on the Capitol grounds." In his order, Hood found "the resolution failed all three constitutional tests it needed to pass." These tests were that it had a "secular purpose, that its primary effect was secular and that it did not 'foster' a government entanglement with...

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Religion Welcome in the Literary World

August 1, 2000

Source: Los Angeles Times

On August 1, 2000, the Los Angeles Times reported that there has been an increase in the amount of new fiction being published that is focused on religion. In the article "Literary World is Making More Room for Religion; With Cultural Diversity an Ever-Growing Presence, Writers (and Readers) are Embracing Themes of Spirituality," Janet Silver, editor in chief for Houghton Mifflin in Boston commented that, "The industry is opened to groups not represented in the past. You find writers from cultures that define themselves by...

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Opening of Exhibit on Growing up Jewish

July 31, 2000

Source: The Washington Post

On July 31, 2000, The Washington Post reported that the exhibit "Members of the Club: Jewish Teen Clubs in Washington" recently opened at B'nai B'rith Klutznick National Jewish Museum in Washington. The exhibit includes memorabilia, dance booklets, beanies, paddles and pins, and photographs from those who were teenagers from the 1920s through the 1960s. As one exhibit panel reads, "Excluded from the sororities, fraternities and clubs of their non-Jewish classmates, Jewish teenagers of those years created their own social...

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10 Commandments Monuments Barred from Capital Lawns

July 30, 2000

Source: The Washington Post

On July 30, 2000, The Washington Post reported that a "federal judge issued a temporary injunction Friday barring Indiana from erecting a Ten Commandments monument on the Statehouse lawn." The state has not decided if it will appeal, said a spokeswoman for the governor. She added that "We believe that because this monument was to be displayed in a historical context it would be constitutional." Indiana Civil Liberties Lawyer Ken Falk commented that "The judge indicated that...the monument lacks a secular purpose and it has the...

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Palos Heights, Chicago: Controversy over Sale of Church to Muslims

July 29, 2000

Source: Chicago Sun-Times

On July 29, 2000, the Chicago Sun-Times reported that "A federal civil rights lawsuit was filed against the city of Palos Heights by Muslims who say officials prevented them from buying property to use as a place of worship." The Al Salam Mosque Foundation claims that the suburb "violated the group's constitutional right to freedom of religion by refusing to approve zoning for the planned mosque. It also charges Mayor Dean Koldenhoven and all eight aldermen with conspiracy in violation of a civil rights law, alleging that they '...

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"Pool Bars Fully Clothed Women; Bridgeview Called Unfair to Muslims"

July 25, 2000

Source: Chicago Sun-Times

On July 25, 2000, the Chicago Sun-Times article states that "Muslim women who want to go poolside while fully clothed have been banned from a Bridgeview Park District swimming pool. Several Muslim women, who believe they should be covered from head to foot, have complained that they aren't able to properly watch their children, said Sabri Samirah of the United Muslim-Americans Association in Palos Hills. 'This is discrimination because of religious beliefs and practices,' Samirah said. 'Just as there is legal protection for those...

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Illustration Angers Hindus in California

July 24, 2000

Source: The San Diego Union-Tribune

On July 24, 2000, The San Diego Union-Tribune published an article entitled "A Depiction that Angered Hindus." The illustration of the "six-armed god with the blue skin that was on the cover of the July 16 Business section [of the newspaper] was highly offensive to some Hindu readers who said it was disrespectful and poked fun at their religion."

Airport Chapel Calms Busy Travelers

July 24, 2000

Source: The Denver Post

On July 24, 2000, The Denver Rocky Mountain News published an article about Denver International Airport's Interfaith Chapel. "Sponsored by Christian, Muslim and Jewish organizations, the chapel, simply dressed in cool shades of blue and white, is meant to be a spiritual decompression chamber for all." An adjoining room has been angled to face Mecca, allowing Muslims to fulfill their daily prayer requirements while traveling. The Interfaith Chapel also holds Catholic Mass on Sundays in addition to "noon communion services several...

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American Indian Art and Artifacts

July 23, 2000

Source: The New York Times

On July 23, 2000, The New York Times published an article about the restoration and relocation of more than 800,000 "objects and artifacts that comprise the bulk of the one million items in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of the American Indian...The move is the last stage of the federal takeover of what was once an independent New York museum, founded by Gustave Heye, a financier. Mr. Heye spent his life acquiring as many Indian items as he could, and single-handedly amassed most of the...

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Public Nativity Questioned

July 23, 2000

Source: The Boston Globe

On July 23, 2000, The Boston Globe published an article about a debate in Lexington, Massachusetts, regarding the placement of a nativity scene on Lexington's Battle Green, a public place. Many gathered on the Green to ask the question aloud: "Should selectmen ban the nativity scene from the Green, its home for more than half a century?" The issue has "cast a cloud over the town common for more than a decade," and it remains controversial for the residents. One resident explained why he, like others, hoped the creche would be...

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American Indian Art and Artifacts

July 23, 2000

Source: Star Tribune

On July 23, 2000, the Star Tribune published an article about an exhibit of Native American religious art that recently opened at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. The heart of the exhibition, "Symbols of Faith and Belief," could very well be a leather box created by the "late Harding Big Bow, a Kiowa artist and Native American Church leader who initiated the exhibition and encouraged the writing of an accompanying book, Peyote Religious Art: Symbols of Faith and Belief. The box depicts a couple bowing beside a ceremonial...

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"God Squad" in Miami

July 23, 2000

Source: The Houston Chronicle

On July 23, 2000, The Houston Chronicle reported that the Miami-Dade police department is recruiting 20 Bible-carrying clergy to ride with them in police cars. "The recruitment drive is an effort to save Miami-Dade's flagging police chaplaincy program, which started 11 years ago with a rabbi, priest and Baptist minister, and lost steam as pastors retired or moved on." The hope is that at least two ministers will be hired and trained to serve as "volunteers in each of the county's eight districts." Irving Heller, assistant...

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Jews Support Secular State, Study Finds

July 22, 2000

Source: The Plain Dealer

On July 22, 2000, The Plain Dealer published an article about a recent survey of American Jews. The study found that despite "what appears to be a growing inclination among many religious groups, politicians and judges to chip away at the wall that separates church and state, American Jews remain staunchly opposed to any mixing of religion and public life." "'Jews are more secure when society is more overtly secular,' said Alan Mittleman, director of the "Jews and the Public Square" project, one of seven surveys funded by the...

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Food Giveaway in Tennessee

July 22, 2000

Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

On July 22, 2000, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch published an article entitled, "Food Giveaway for the Poor is Set for Sunday Near Trans World Dome." The food giveaway is the "first event of the 68th General Assembly of the Church of God, a Pentecostal denomination based in Cleveland, Tenn...The denomination, founded near the Tennessee-South Carolina border in 1896, has 1 million members nationally, most in the Southeast. About 4 million members live in 159 other countries. Its first general assembly was in 1906 in Cherokee...

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Clergy Asked to Help Unions

July 22, 2000

Source: Los Angeles Times

On July 22, 2000, the Los Angeles Times published the article, "Exploring Issues, Answers and Beliefs; A Union of Faith and Labor; As a Booming Economy Leaves Some of its Workers Far Behind, An Interfaith Convocation Reminds Members of the Clergy about Scriptural Commands to Help the Needy." It reports that "In the underbelly of Southern California's booming economy, countless workers, largely anonymous and voiceless, struggle daily with long hours, low pay and dismal working conditions as they wash dishes, prepare food, clean...

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