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Secular Coalition for America (Official)

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Secular Coalition for America (Official)

The Secular Coalition for America is an advocacy organization whose purpose is to amplify the diverse and growing voice of the nontheistic community in the United States.

Website: http://secular.org
Location: Washington, D.C.
Members: 374
Latest Activity: Nov 27, 2014

Secular Coalition for Arizona Kick-Off a Rousing Success

Secular Coalition for America Needs Your Leadership to Build More State Affiliates

“What an amazing night.”

The positive online comments keep pouring in!
The movement for a saner and more secular America is blazing a historic new trail, a trail that will lead to Secular Coalitions in all 50 states and the District of Columbia by the end of the decade. On October 12, we took the first exciting steps on that trail with the establishment of the Secular Coalition for Arizona, the first Secular Coalition for America State Affiliate.

To read more, click here!

Discussion Forum

Nebraska trying to organise despite wide open distances

Started by James Kz. Last reply by Joan Denoo Jan 19, 2013. 1 Reply

There were several people in Lincoln today meeting about trying to organise a state chapter of the SCA in Nebraska.Organising people over in Omaha and Lincoln (the state capital) is not too hard, the…Continue

Prayer god and Veterans Admin

Started by mike h.. Last reply by James Kz Oct 23, 2012. 3 Replies

Here we go, this may spur a conversation...I am a disabled vet and am offended at constantly hearing "No athiests in foxholes" .....  …Continue

The Good News Club or Truth Seekers Club

Started by Jeff Dempsey. Last reply by James M. Martin Jun 27, 2012. 1 Reply

This organization is a very serious threat to a "Secular Nation."  These people are using our tax dollars to go into school buildings after hours and teach this garbage to our children!  I'm sure…Continue

Tags: State, &, Church, of, Seperation

Launching A Campaign Against My City To Stop Prayer Before Council Meetings

Started by Jeff Dempsey. Last reply by Jeff Dempsey Jun 17, 2012. 5 Replies

I live in Southern, Ohio and the Bible-Belt runs strong through the hills in our community.  I frequent many city council meetings because of the corruption that has been within our tiny city for…Continue

Tags: State, and, Church, of, Seperation

Secular Coalition Latest News

Legislative Update for the Week of June 1, 2015

A look at the week ahead:

After last night’s failure to extend all of the Patriot Act’s provisions during a session on Sunday, the Senate now moves forward with the House version of the reauthorization (the USA FREEDOM Act), which places new restrictions on the NSA’s ability to collect phone records. This was a setback for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who had been urging colleagues for a clean extension of the Patriot Act before provisions expired. The USA FREEDOM Act still faces several hurdles, with several Senators promising to put forward amendments that would reinstate some of the phone metadata collection provisions. If that happens, expect the debate surrounding this bill and the reauthorization to continue.

We are also expecting the House to consider the Commerce-Justice-Science spending bill this week. During the bill markup in the Appropriations Committee, concerns were raised about cuts to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, as well as NASA’s Earth-based science program and how it will hinder climate change research. The House Appropriations Committee will be marking up the defense authorization this week as well.

President Obama will be hosting the King and Queen of the Netherlands today for an official state visit.

On our radar:

Adoption discrimination prohibition: Before Congress recessed for Memorial Day, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) introduced S. 1382 and H.R. 2449. These bills, both titled “Every Family Deserves a Family Act”, would prohibit any adoption or foster care agency from discriminating against potential placements on the basis of gender identity, sexual orientation, or marital status. This bill was introduced as a response to H.R. 1299, which would allow for agencies to continue to receive funds even if they discriminate or refuse services while citing a sincerely held religious belief. The Secular Coalition will be working closely with our partners in the LGBT community to move the Every Family Deserves a Family Act forward.

Conversion therapy ban: Also before the recess, Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) along with 37 co-sponsors introduced a bill that would classify so-called “gay conversion therapy” as fraud. The bill (H.R. 2450), would ban all conversion therapy under the premise that being LGBT is not a condition to be cured, while providing an explicit exception for legitimate forms  of counseling. The Secular Coalition supports this bill and looks forward to working with our allies to gather momentum behind it.

Coming up:

Next week, the Secular Coalition will be co-sponsoring a Congressional hill briefing with coalition members Center for Inquiry and the American Humanist Association. The briefing will examine the current status of international religious freedom and what Congress can do protect religious minorities abroad. Panelists include: Elizabeth K. Cassidy, United States Commission on International Religious Freedom; Tina Ramirez, Founder and Executive Director, Hardwired and former International and Government Relations Director at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty; Mahmood Ahmad, from Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA; and Michael De Dora from the Center for Inquiry and President of the United Nations NGO Committee on Freedom of Religion Belief.

 

Secular Coalition Delighted at Growing Constituency of “Nones”

As the Religiously Unaffiliated Population Grows, So Must Recognition by America’s Elected Leaders

Washington, DC—The Secular Coalition for America expressed enthusiasm at news of the growing constituency of unaffiliated Americans. A Pew study released Tuesday found that religiously unaffiliated Americans—or “nones”—now make up nearly 23 percent of the population.

The study indicates a 41.6 percent increase in the number of “nones” –those who do not identify with any religion—since 2007. The share of self-identified atheists has nearly doubled in size since 2007, from 1.6 percent to 3.1 percent. Agnostics have grown from 2.4 percent to 4 percent.

“The study indicates that not only are the religiously unaffiliated a rapidly growing community, but the number of those who specifically identify as atheist or agnostic is increasing as well,” said Kelly Damerow, Interim Executive Director of the Secular Coalition for America. “The findings lend credence to the growth we’ve witnessed within our community as a whole.”

According to the report:

  • All major religion surveys find that the unaffiliated share of the U.S. population (the percentage of religious “nones”) is growing rapidly. 
  • From 2007-2014, the “nones” have risen from just over 15 percent to almost 23 percent of all U.S. adults.
  • The “nones” are comprised of: atheists (13 percent), agnostics (17 percent), and nothing in particular (69 percent).
  • Nearly one-in-five American adults (18 percent) were raised in a religion and are now unaffiliated, compared with just 4 percent who have moved in the other direction.
  • The unaffiliated make up a growing share of each generation, with about one third of older Millennials now identifying with no religion.
  • Among Millenials raised as "nones," two thirds remain unaffiliated as adults.
  • Atheists and agnostics now make up a larger portion of the unaffiliated, accounting for 31 percent of all religious “nones,” up from 25 percent in 2007.

“As our community continues to grow, we are also becoming increasingly organized as a political constituency,” Damerow said. “Forward thinking lawmakers who saw the writing on the wall have been working with us for years. It’s time for their colleagues to catch on.”

The Secular Coalition for America is the advocacy organization representing atheists, humanists, agnostics and other nontheists. The Secular Coalition represents 17 voting member organizations, as well as more than 200 associate, endorsing and affiliated organizations, and 50 state chapters. Find out more about the Secular Coalition at www.secular.org.

 

 

CONTACT: Kelly Damerow, Interim Executive Director, at kelly@secular.org or (202)299-1091 ext. 207

Supporting Secularists in Southeast Asia

Supporting Secularists in Southeast Asia - Casey Brescia

The freedom to express one’s beliefs is among the most basic human rights that governments are obliged to protect. That’s why the Secular Coalition for America met with the Office of Religion and Global Affairs and the Office of International Religious Freedom at the State Department yesterday to express concern over the growing threat to nonbelievers in southeast Asia. Joined by two of our member organizations, the Center for Inquiry and Ex-Muslims of North America, we outlined the dangers posed to nonbelievers in the region with a focus on the situation in Bangladesh.

During the past few years, there has been a disturbing rise of attacks on Bangladeshi nonbelievers. In February of 2004, author and poet Humayun Azad was attacked while leaving the Bangla Academy Book Fair. Though he survived the encounter, only six months later he was murdered while abroad in Germany by Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen, a Bangladeshi Islamist group. In January 2013 secular blogger Asif Mohiuddin, whose blog covered topics including women’s rights and Islamic fundamentalism, was attacked and stabbed by four young men outside his house. Mohiuddin survived the attack only to be imprisoned by the Bangladeshi government and have his blog shut down. Only a month later another secular blogger, Ahmed Rajib Haider, was attacked by machete wielding men while leaving his house. The attack was so savage that a relative had difficulty identifying the body. The past three months have seen two more murders of openly secular activists. On February 26, Avijit Roy and his wife were returning home by bicycle rickshaw when two assailants stopped them and dragged them from the vehicle. They attackers proceeded to hack them with machetes, killing Avijit and seriously injuring his wife. Just a month later another secular blogger, Washiqur Rahman, suffered the same fate when he was attacked outside of his house.

Bangladesh is a secular state which guarantees its citizens the freedom of religion, belief, and expression in Articles 18 and 19 of its Constitution. Bangladesh is also a signatory to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which enshrines a commitment that “no one shall be subject to coercion which would impair his freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice” and “everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of his choice.”

Yesterday, we urged the State Department to work with Special Envoy David Saperstein to ensure that nontheists would be counted as a protected minority group. A proactive approach to combating this violence will require that the State Department be familiar with nontheistic community of Bangladesh and the unique challenges they endure. We also asked that the State Department work with the Bangladeshi government to repeal the blasphemy laws that were used to arrest scores of bloggers in April 2013. This is not an unreasonable request, but it is an expectation that Bangladesh make good on its promise to respect freedom of conscience and expression as outlined in its Constitution and the ICCPR.

Bangladesh is a diverse country and ensuring that it remains so requires the government protect its citizens freedom of belief and expression. This includes the freedom to speak without fear of reprisal. If the people of Bangladesh, secular and religious alike, are meant to believe they have freedom of speech than the government must commit itself to protecting and securing justice for those who express unpopular ideas. The value of free speech is not limited by geopolitical borders and neither is our support for those who will bravely proclaim it.  

 

Comment Wall

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Comment by James M. Martin on March 8, 2013 at 7:26pm

I like the idea of an American Secular Party to compete with the two establishment parties that, as predicted by Washington himself, will destroy America.  To me, the instilling of irrational belief in children -- essentially indoctrination into belief at the sake of reason -- is central to the Party plank.  Keeping Jesus out of the schools by disallowance of vouchers to evil Popes and their evangelical ilk stateside, wold be a Top Ten plank positions.  Taking "God" off coins and absent from the Pledge.  Things like that.  I see Judeo-Christian, and mostly Christian dogma guiding far too many institutions and taking us backward into ancient history rather than looking toward the Dawn of World Enlightenment and True Freedom from The Priesthood.

Comment by AgeOfAtheists14 on March 8, 2013 at 5:54pm

Eghp! all my other wall comments pale in comparison to:
http://www.atheistnexus.org/forum/topics/check-out-u-s-atheist-poli...

Comment by AgeOfAtheists14 on July 2, 2012 at 8:25am

big 'like'

Comment by James M. Martin on June 24, 2012 at 2:42pm

Fine sentiments but falling on deaf ears in King's hands.

Comment by William on November 6, 2011 at 7:49pm
For those who haven't interacted with social workers this is kind of a hard problem to describe. Essentially, Social workers have a code of ethics, in this code of ethics, there is a standard of cultural competence. It says: "Social workers should obtain education about and seek to understand the nature of social diversity and oppression with respect to race, ethnicity, national origin, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, marital status, political belief, religion, immigration status, and mental or physical disability." I feel the exclusion of Non-religious as a category is getting the way of social workers being culturally competent with secular groups. So I started a petition. http://www.change.org/petitions/nasw-include-non-religious-a-catego...
Comment by sehkmet on July 11, 2011 at 11:54am

Hi All,

I don't know if you've heard about the vote on the "I Voted" stickers handed out on election day.  Some of the stickers have our state motto, "With God all things are possible".  There are more details at Friendly Atheist.  All you have to do to vote is supply an Ohio zip code.  They run from 43001 to 45999.  Voting closes on August 8, 2011.  Please vote Elect Your Sticker.  Multiple voting may require cleaning out cookies and/or rebooting between votes, not sure.

Comment by Richard Haynes on April 17, 2011 at 12:57pm
Just so everyone knows, when a spammer gets past our walls, we ban them as soon as they are reported to us. This is why they don't show up in member searches. We already banned them.

In the future, remember to use the "Report an Issue" link at the bottom of every page. We will act as soon as we are notified.

Thanks.
Comment by George on April 17, 2011 at 10:04am
@Bryon, TFA,
That spam account was deleted sometime yesterday.
Comment by The Flying Atheist on April 17, 2011 at 9:23am
Yes, I'm getting junk mail and I don't like it!  What's going on here?
Comment by Bryon on April 17, 2011 at 1:33am
is anyone else getting junk mail from Jenifer Hagge via this site?
 

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