Time is running out to purchase tickets for Wednesday night’s presentation by Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and book author Leonard Pitts in Houston. Pitts will speak at 7 p.m. at Congregation Emanu El in Houston. You can purchase tickets ($20) here.

Earlier Wednesday Pitts will also be on a panel discussion for “Religion in the 2012 Elections,” a symposium co-sponsored by the Texas Freedom Network Education Fund, the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy and the Rice University Religion and Public Life Program. But no seats are left for that event, and registration for the symposium is now closed.

But tickets are still available for the Pitts presentation at 7 p.m. on Wednesday. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets.Read More

“There is an absolute historical pattern to the bigotry of social conservatives. They rally using terms of moral Armageddon against the freedoms sought by some despised or condescended to Other, whether that be a woman wanting to work outside the home, a Jew seeking to join the country club, an African American trying to get home on a city bus. Then the freedoms are won, and people — even socially conservative ones — realize the world kept spinning after all. Armageddon did not come. Only change.”

That’s from a recent column by Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Leonard Pitts. The Texas Freedom Network Education Fund is hosting an evening presentation by Pitts next week — 7 p.m., Wednesday, January 25, at Congregation Emanu El in Houston. Earlier that day Pitts will speak at a symposium on “Religion in the 2012 Elections,” which the TFN Education Fund is co-sponsoring with the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy and the Rice University Religion and Public Life Program. The symposium is 1-4:30 p.m. at James A. Baker III Hall on the Rice campus.

We have a fantastic line-up of public opinion experts and commentators for the… Read More


“I’m not ashamed to admit I’m a Christian. But you don’t need to be in the pews every Sunday to know that there’s something wrong in this country when gays can serve openly in the military but our kids can’t openly celebrate Christmas or pray in school.”

The Texas Tribune reports that an “official familiar with the campaign strategy” says this new Iowa ad for Gov. Perry is targeting evangelical voters with the message that the “moral fabric of our country is out of whack.” In the ad Perry criticizes what he absurdly calls “Obama’s war on religion” and “liberal attacks on our religious heritage.”

The ad follows a statement yesterday in which Gov. Perry attacked a new Obama administration policy to defend the human rights of gay people who are imprisoned, brutalized and even murdered in some countries. Perry called the policy “not in America’s interests” and “not worth a dime of taxpayers’ money.”

Misusing religion to divide voters isn’t a new political strategy for  Gov. Perry, of course. But his rhetoric is increasingly divisive and even incendiary as he desperately tries to regain his footing in the race for the Republican… Read More

by TFN

At a time when so much else is at stake, why do our nation’s politics remain fixated on the culture wars? The Texas Freedom Network Education Fund is partnering with the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University in January to explore the turbulent intersection of religion and politics in America.

The “Religion in the 2012 Elections” symposium on January 25 in Houston will feature some of the nation’s most distinguished scholars, interesting commentators and informed experts on politics and public opinion. The afternoon event will include panelists such as John Green of the Pew Research Center’s Forum for Religion and Public Life, Anna Greenberg from the national public opinion research firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner, author and Gordon College President D. Michael Lindsay and Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Leonard Pitts. Pitts will speak again at a special TFN Education Fund event that evening.

Admission to the symposium is free. Tickets to the Pitts event that evening are $20.

Click here to learn more about these two great events and to reserve a seat.Read More