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NEWS
December 27, 1990
We Americans preen when we lecture other nations about human rights. We are especially proud of our Constitution and Bill of Rights, as we should be. Let's hope nobody looks too closely. We're a lot better at words than we are about applying them. This is especially true when it comes to questions that cause the state the slightest discomfort. Take religion, for instance, tucked firmly into the First Amendment as a seemingly inviolable right. Once the rationalizers in robes get going, that right becomes dependent on how much power a religion has. Any religion can look absurd from the outside.
NEWS
July 20, 2006
IN HIS LETTER ON the difference between cults and religions, Larry Lueder asked an interesting question: What the difference is between a cult and a religion? Speaking as an atheist, it strikes me that a fine line distinguishes religions from cults. In fact, some may argue that religions and cults are the same thing. I don't know what the difference is. But I do know that Lueder is mistaken if he thinks that only religions that call for the death of nonbelievers must be cults. If our government banned any religion that called for the death of nonbelievers, both Christianity and Judaism would be affected, based on what's in their scriptures.
NEWS
December 20, 1994 | By DEAN J. SNYDER
It would be wrong to resurrect religious ceremonies in public school classrooms. Yet, neither should the sentiments of those who are urging a return to prayer in schools be dismissed out of hand. Even if their solution to the problem is misguided, they are right to sense that there is indeed a problem. Barely more than 30 years ago school children in Pennsylvania began their day by listening to 10 verses from the Bible and reciting together the Lord's Prayer. It was the U.S. Supreme Court's 1963 ruling in School District of Abington Township v. Schempp that decisively put an end to such religious exercises in public schools here and throughout the nation.
NEWS
January 10, 2005
GOD HAD NO part in the recent tsunamis. Religion is the problem with this world. Too many people believing in too many gods that don't exist. My theory about the Bible is that if the first story (Adam and Eve) is made up, why wouldn't the rest of it be phony, too? The Bible says own slaves. OK, give me one to do some house chores. One person (Jesus) was born without semen, walked on water and rose from the dead, all in 30 years? Sounds like a crock to me. If a person goes to church every Sunday for 70 years, he wastes a full 151 days of his life and thousands of dollars that will go to pay for lawsuits for perverted priests.
NEWS
August 28, 1987
As if Jim Bakker's shabby demise wasn't grief enough, the politicized Christian right is getting the wind knocked out of its high-flying campaign to reshape the public school classroom. Three times fundamentalists' lawsuits have inched up the federal-court ladder, only to get knocked off - twice this week alone. That's good news for the republic. The first defeat came in June when the Supreme Court said it was unconstitutional for Louisiana to require the teaching of the pseudo-science of "creationism" - basically the book of Genesis - in public classrooms.
NEWS
December 12, 2003 | By CHRISTINE M. FLOWERS
SEVERAL months ago, in a modest courtroom at 16th and Callowhill, a young man from Lebanon was granted asylum. A Maronite Christian, he successfully convinced an immigration judge that he had suffered persecution at the hands of his native government on account of his religion and was entitled to the protection of the U.S. How fitting that his chosen refuge is a city which was itself established as a haven for those fleeing religious persecution....
NEWS
October 7, 1996 | By Marianne Williamson
There is an important distinction to be made between a religiously based vs. a spiritually based political impulse. While religion is a force that either creatively or noncreatively separates us, spirituality is a force that unites us by reminding us of our fundamental oneness. The religionization of American politics is dangerous; the spiritualization of our political consciousness is imperative. When violence erupted last week over the Israeli opening of a tunnel near the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, the clear difference between religious passion and spiritual passion was obvious.
SPORTS
May 24, 1999 | by Paul Domowitch, Daily News Staff Writer
Several hundred people packed the Cherry Hill meeting house of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints to listen to Eagles coach Andy Reid. The subject last night was salvation rather than football. The West Coast offense never came up. Reid and his wife, Tammy, both of whom are Mormons, were invited to speak by Channel 10 sportscaster Vai Sikahema, who is a bishop in the church's south Jersey branch. Reid spoke to the mesmerized gathering for more than 30 minutes. He told them of his conversion to the Mormon religion at Brigham Young, and the important role his religion plays in his life.
NEWS
January 29, 2006 | BY RICHARD DAWKINS Charles Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University
Imagine, sang John Lennon, a world with no religion. Imagine no suicide bombers, no 9/11, no 7/7, no Crusades, no witch-hunts, no Gunpowder Plot, no Kashmir dispute, no Indian partition, no Israel/Palestine wars, no Serb/Croat/Muslim massacres, no Northern Ireland "troubles. " Imagine no Taliban to blow up ancient statues, no public beheadings of blasphemers, no flogging of female skin for the crime of showing an inch of it. Imagine no persecutions of the Jews - no Jews to persecute indeed, for, without religious taboos against marrying out, the Diaspora would long ago have merged into Europe.
NEWS
October 11, 1999 | BY RICHARD IACONELLI
The controversy over the Brooklyn Museum's exhibition of "Holy Virgin Mary" (with pictures of female sex organs and animal excrement pasted on the canvas) shows us more than art. It more clearly shows the media's contempt for religious people. New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani has been accused of censorship. He says artistic license must be balanced against community values. The media have instead framed the issue as freedom of expression vs. "narrow-minded" conservative politics.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
April 22, 2015 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Msgr. Joseph W. Devlin, 85, a retired professor of religion at La Salle University who worked to improve relations between Catholics and members of other faiths, died Wednesday, April 1, of cardiac arrest at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Camden. At the time of his death, Msgr. Devlin was a resident of Oaklyn, Camden County. Born in Pennsauken, he graduated from St. Joseph's University and Mount St. Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, Md. He was ordained in Philadelphia on May 26, 1956.
NEWS
April 3, 2015
A DUCK walks into an Indiana bar and asks for a drink. The bartender refuses to serve him. The duck says, "It's that damn religious law, right? You have something against poultry, right? You're such a bigot, you know?" And the bartender says, "Me, I'm an atheist. It ain't got nothing to do with religion. You just smell foul. " And the duck says, "See, I told ya!" The above will explain several things, not the least of which is why I was never expected to have a brilliant career in standup comedy.
NEWS
January 16, 2015
JESUS H. CHRIST on a crutch, what's Pope Francis saying now ? "If my good friend Dr. Gasparri says a curse word against my mother, he can expect a punch," Francis said, making a fake move toward Gasparri, who organizes papal trips. "It's normal. You cannot provoke. You cannot insult the faith of others. You cannot make fun of the faith of others. " Sounding a little like an ayatollah, the pope spoke to reporters en route to the Philippines. While his off-hand remark excused a "punch" (what happened to turn the other cheek?
NEWS
January 14, 2015 | BY JAD SLEIMAN
  IN RESPONSE TO Signe Wilkinson's "Do not expect silence"editorial: The attackers likely didn't want or expect silence. They were more likely after Signe's exact response. I can't think of a more alienating and divisive Us-vs.-Them phrase than, "If a religion doesn't want its prophets ridiculed, they shouldn't do hateful things. " Either that statement is a whole new level of bigotry or I missed the bi-weekly teleconference during which we as a religion decided to shoot up Charlie Hebdo . I understand the impulse.
NEWS
September 25, 2014 | By Rita Giordano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Blackwood teenager Samantha Jones grew up reciting the Pledge of Allegiance with the words under God , and she is willing to go to court for the right to keeping saying those words. "This is about our freedom as Americans," Jones said. The people who want to see those words taken out of the pledge would say the same thing. Jones, an 18-year-old Highland Regional High School senior, her parents, and her younger sister and brother learned this week that they have been granted intervenor status in a Superior Court case that contends that reciting the pledge violates the rights of atheists and humanists.
NEWS
June 16, 2014
ISSUE | HISTORY With cramming, decades can get lost As a former university professor of education, I agree that many students are ignorant of historical facts - but it's not because children don't study history ("Well-informed citizenry must know history," June 6). In fact, students study too much history at any one time and, as a result, don't learn or remember much. It would be better to teach history over several years, with each segment devoted to building an understanding of key ideas, making personal and emotional connections, and concentrating on key facts.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 7, 2014 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
Since making her full-length album debut in 1993 with Plantation Lullabies , Meshell Ndegeocello has undergone more musical and lyrical changes than Cher has costumes. Gender- and genre-bending, she has ripped through ever-hazier shades of avant-pop and soul in her most recent albums, the salty jazz and decadent rock of 2012's Pour Une Âme Souveraine: A Dedication to Nina Simone , and the oddly layered dub/dance-hall pop of 2014's Comet, Come to Me . Does she even recognize the woman and the artist she started out as, considering all her changes?
NEWS
December 5, 2013 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Sister Claire Jane Brill, 86, a parochial-school teacher who later served as a hospital chaplain, died Friday, Nov. 29, of lung disease at Lankenau Hospital in Wynnewood. Sister Claire Jane, who also had the religious name Sister Genevieve Mary, graduated from John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls High School in 1944, and worked as a secretary before entering the Sisters of Mercy in September 1946. She professed her vows in 1949. She taught elementary school for several years in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and then joined the faculty of West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Girls in 1953, where for 12 years she taught religion and Latin.
NEWS
November 12, 2013
TO CHRISTINE Flowers: I've just read your piece on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act passed recently by the Senate. And although I agree with the assessment that most liberals try to paint conservatives as uneducated bigots, I cannot follow you as you affirm that offering the right to marriage matters less when it comes to fight discrimination. Changing people's minds to make them accept and not tolerate another often happens when they consider the other to be part of the same group (at least on some level)
NEWS
November 7, 2013 | By Jonathan Tamari, Inquirer Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - An amendment from Sen. Pat Toomey (R., Pa.) would expand the types of religious groups exempted from a proposed ban on workplace discrimination against gays, lesbians, and transgendered people. His plan would also strengthen the language shielding religious employers from the antibias bill, which Toomey supported Monday night, with reservations. As part of the wrangling over Toomey's support for a key procedural vote, he won assurances that he will be able to offer his amendment before the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA)
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