Religious Liberty in Public Schools Overview by Charles Haynes

WEB RESOURCE The Religious Freedom Education Project provides an overview of how religion can best be taught in schools written by Charles Haynes. In addition there is a selection of consensus documents with clarifications about how religion can best be accommodated in public schools without "crossing the line" of violating the First Amendment.

Establishment Clause and Government Funding of Religious Schools and Other Faith-Based Organizations

WEB RESOURCE This article connected to the larger report by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, explores the complex, fluid relationship between government and religion in the area of Faith-Based Organizations.

The Legal Status of Religious Organizations in Civil Lawsuits

WEB RESOURCE The PEW Forum on Religion and Public Life explores complex constitutional questions that have been troubling American courts for more than a century: Do the First Amendment's religion clauses, which guarantee religious liberty and prohibit all laws "respecting the establishment of religion," bestow a unique legal status on religious organizations that puts some of their decisions and actions beyond the reach of civil laws?

Evolution and Religion

WEB RESOURCE This Pew Forum research package gives an overview of the Evolution - Religion debate, examines its social and legal dimensions and reviews the life and ideas of Charles Darwin.

Religion and Science

WEB RESOURCE This Pew Forum research package provides an overview of the relationship between religion and science and examines public opinion on the issue as well as religious beliefs.

Conflicts & Agreements between Science and Religion

WEB RESOURCE This page by Religious Tolerance outlines perspectives of some religious and scientific areas of disagreement and the reasons behind them. These include: environment, evolution and creation science, archaeology and the Bible, human sexuality,and much more.

Bill Moyers Essay: Freedom of and From Religion - The Contraception Debate

WEB VIDEO WITH TRANSCRIPT In this video essay, Bill Moyers addresses the question of how to honor religious liberty without it becoming the liberty to impose on others moral beliefs they don't share. The recent debate over contraception coverage in Catholic hospitals and other faith-based institutions brought this question to the forefront.

Changing Attitudes on Gay Marriage

WEB RESOURCE In Pew Research Center polling in 2001, Americans opposed same-sex marriage by a margin of 57% to 35%. Since then, support for same-sex marriage has steadily grown. And today, support for same-sex marriage is at its highest point since Pew Research Center began polling on this issue. Based on polling in 2017, a majority of Americans (62%) support same-sex marriage, while 32% oppose it. Examine the data based on age, and religion at this site.

Sikhs Face More Attacks Since Sept. 11 Tragedies

WEB AUDIO This NPR recorded interview explores Sikh issues since the bombing of the twin towers. Rights groups say that since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, there has been a marked rise in hate crimes against Sikhs. To talk more about that and to learn about the religion, Steve Inskeep talks to Kavneet Singh, managing director of the Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund.

Jim Wallis on Serving the Common Good

WEB VIDEO In this Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly Episode, Jim Wallis talks about the ideas in a new book called "On God's Side," this social activist, evangelical Christian preacher, and editor of Sojourners magazine. He advocates solving the country's problems by serving the common good.

A Guide to Church-State Experts and Organizations

WEB RESOURCE Church-state issues are among the most contentious and emotional issues in American life. Dozens are currently testing the bounds of the First Amendment's Establishment and Free Exercise clauses. This ReligionLink site offers a diverse and extensive guide to individuals and organizations expert in the issues currently contested.

Homosexuality and the Pews: Seven Signs Influencing Congregational Acceptance of Gays and Lesbians

WEB RESOURCE This article in ARDA (Association of Religion Data Archives) provides an analyze data from the 2006-2007 National Congregations Study, which asked a series of questions about how welcoming various religious communities are to gays and lesbians in committed relationships. The article describes seven key factors that led to differences in perception and acceptance.

Should Military Chaplains Have to Believe in God?

WEB RESOURCE This Abilene Public Radio audio and transcript addresses the issue of who can be selected as a chaplain in the US military. The US military chaplaincy program has a proud heritage that stretches all the way back to the Continental Army during the American Revolution. "There are rabbis, ministers, imams and priests serving the nation's heroes and their families as committed members of the U.S. Army," according to one video produced by the U.S. Army Chaplain Corps. But are they ready for an atheist chaplain?

Why Do Sikhs Want To Serve In The Military?

AUDIO FILE & TRANSCRIPT This NPR broadcast focuses on Sikhs in the American military. Sikhs have a long history of fighting in wars. But in the US, their turbans and beards often prevent them from being able to join the military. Guest host Celeste Headlee speaks with Major Kamaljit Kalsi who's hoping to change that.

Six questions about the contraception mandate [related to First Amendment] and the Supreme Court

WEB RESOURCE Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor's order temporarily blocking implementation of the Affordable Care Act's contraception mandate for certain faith-based nonprofits relates to a year of intensifying controversy. Pew Research address the questions that religious groups are demanding be addressed by the courts. However, the questions do not address the rights of the workers or recipients of service who are not members of the faith.

When the Right to Religion Conflicts with a Changing Society

POD CAST This recording of an NPR broadcast summarizes the religious liberty claims of religious groups, non profits, and businesses that are clashing with the changing laws and norms of American society. There is a transcript included. This could serve as a neutral discussion starter on a controversial issues in a civics class.

Uniform Rule May Keep Religious Americans From Military Service

Audio Broadcast This National Public Radio story focuses on a letter from about 100 Congressional Representatives to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel. People who observe religions that require specific hair or dress traditions have to seek an accommodation from a superior to break the Defense Department's uniform requirements.

Religious Freedom and LGBT Rights

WEB VIDEO Unfortunately, "religious freedom" in the U.S. has become a divisive issue in recent years, mostly centered on issues related to sexuality and marriage. This video from the Religious Freedom & Business Foundation features a discussion among leaders representing differing views on gay marriage and religion: One side sees religious freedom as a protection against having to accommodate things they cannot conscientiously support, e.g., same-sex marriage. The other side sees that argument as discriminatory and a violation of civil rights law especially now that same-sex marriage is legal throughout the US.

Saving Souls - Creationism and Public Schools

WEB RESOURCE This ACLU article argues that the ongoing efforts by creationist is making inroads against the teaching of evolution in science classes by exerting pressure on science teachers themselves. The article describes this influence and recommends that educators and scientists look beyond the courts and devise strategies to ease the pressure on science teachers to self-censor or otherwise compromise their instruction in evolution.

Why Liberals Win: America's Culture Wars from the Election of 1800 to Same-Sex Marriage

INTERNET RESOURCE This Religion and Politics article is an interview with Stephen Prothero, religious studies professor at Boston University. He talks about the religious dimensions of domestic politics in America in historical perspective. He also brings forward issues about the impact of lack of religious understanding on foreign affairs.

Religious Diversity in the Classroom - What's Law Got To Do With It (Encore Presentation)

WEB RESOURCE This is a free webinar for teachers created by Tanenbaum and Teaching Tolerance produced in 2015 It will share the legal guidelines that inform instructional choices about discussing religious diversity in the classroom. This webinar will also help educators feel comfortable addressing religious diversity in ways that foster a respectful learning environment,from basic strategies and practices to First Amendment considerations.

Support for Muslim College Students: Finding Community & Maintaining Religious Identity in Schools

WEB RESOURCE It can be extremely difficult being a Muslim college student in America. In many cases, all the typical college student knows about Islam or Muslim individuals is what they have seen on the television or heard on the radio - and in today's political climate, it's entirely possible that what they have heard has a negative slant. This can lead to an unconscious bias at best, and at worst, outright discrimination against Muslim students who have done nothing offensive to anyone. Though this rich resource was designed for Muslim college students, it will be useful for middle and high students in public schools as well. If you are a teacher or administrator in a public school or college, this can also be a guide for you to set up programs in support of your students.

How the Mormon church's past shapes its position on immigration today

WEB RESOURCE This is a short scholar article by Matthew Bowman, Henderson State University. He provides a brief overview of the founding of Mormonism where he emphasizes that the church leaders see themselves as a religion of immigrants. He argues that this is why the church is more sympathetic to immigrants today than many other conservative faith groups.

We Worship Here: Sikh Gurdwara by Kanwaljit Kaur-Singh Published by Franklin Watt, 2019

BOOK What is a gurdwara for? Who is Guru Nanak? What is the Guru Granth Sahib? How do Sikhs worship? All these questions and more are explored in this first introduction to the religion of Sikhism. The We Worship Here series introduces early elementary school aged children to the main religions of the world. Each book features information about beliefs, values and the ways people worship.