By Steve Petersen and James Zimmerman
In January James Zimmerman led a panel discussion with members Jack Caravela and Ryan Sutter on the Christianity of America. In Part One, they discussed America's formative years. The program began by discussing the freedom of religion many European settlers desired. Next, they discussed the beliefs and religious affiliations of the Founding Fathers. They also discussed arguments put forth by those who assert America is a Christian nation.
In Part Two, they compared the Christianity of contemporary America with several time periods in the past. They discussed the religion climate during the first decades after independence, as well as the temperance movements, abolitionists, and progressives that proliferated during the Gilded Age. They lastly address the religiosity of America during the era between the two World Wars and during the post-war years. The show concluded with Jack suggesting books to read for more information.. If you would like to help on the cable program or sponsor the program on your cable access station or have ideas for future programs please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Mike Haubrich
Atheists Talk continues to be a solid outreach program for the Minnesota Atheists, and I am pleased to report that plans are in the works to branch into two separate projects related to the show.
August Berkshire is going to pilot a hybrid version of the show on KTNF radio, using his skills at outreach and dialog with the religious. There is the possibility that the new show, a shared program with a theistic co-host, may be picked up by KTNF as one of their own shows! Please show support for this project by listening and encouraging your friends to listen.
By George Kane
The first vote of the 111th Congress with significance to the separation of church and state was a success, but not everyone on the religious right realized that they had suffered a defeat. One of the provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 was originally to be $10 billion for repairs and facility construction at eligible colleges. Funds were not to be available for theological seminaries, or at secular colleges for buildings used for religious instruction. Republican Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina offered an amendment "to allow the free exercise of religion at institutions of higher education that receive (repair and reconstruction) funding." In other words, the amendment would have opened up the government funding to religious education.