UPDATE: Now we find out that Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., is coming to the Texas GOP convention in June. See more at the end of this post. Don McLeroy lost his chairmanship of the State Board of Education last year because he was more interested in promoting his own narrow ideological views than facts and sound scholarship in Texas classrooms. The College Station dentist insisted that "somebody's gotta stand up to experts" when he promoted creationist arguments in new science standards last year. He argued that science should be redefined to include the supernatural and endorsed a book that calls parents "monsters" if they teach their children about evolution. Then during the debate over social studies curriculum standards, McLeroy suggested women and minorities owe thanks to men and the "majority" for granting them their rights, argued that Joseph McCarthy has been "vindicated" and defended the appointment of absurdly unqualified political activists as social studies "experts" to help guide the revision of curriculum standards. One might think that Republicans would be wary of embracing someone with such extreme views. But apparently not Texas Republicans. Read More

The political jousting between Bill White and Rick Perry over the Texas State Board of Education's controversial revision of social studies curriculum standards is legitimate in the electoral arena. It's certainly preferable to dragging political agendas into our children's classrooms, which the state board has been doing during the curriculum revision. But what the Republican Party of Texas did this week is shameful. Read More

It looks like Texas State Board of Education members Don McLeroy, R-College Station, and Cynthia Dunbar, R-Richmond, don’t mind speaking to Republican organizations that discourage — intentionally or not — non-Christians from becoming members. McLeroy and Dunbar will be joining other far-right speakers at an education “conference” hosted by Golden Corridor Republican Women in the Dallas area April 24.

The Golden Corridor group covers Dallas, Collin and Denton counties in North Texas. Check out the group’s logo, which includes a Christian cross positioned over an American flag and an outline of Texas:

Of course, we defend the right of all Americans and private associations to show their faith as they see fit. But we imagine Jews and other non-Christians might not feel very welcome joining a party organization that seems exclusively for Christians. For that matter, we suspect mainstream Christians might feel a bit out of place as well. In any case, Golden Corridor is yet another example of how the Republican Party of Texas is increasingly an exclusionary organization that welcomes primarily conservative Protestant fundamentalists (and others who don’t mind having their personal faith slighted or ignored).

The conference’s audience… Read More

Primary Day on March 2 will provide a good indication of just how much Texas Republicans really respect religious freedom in America.

Republican primary voters will be able to register their opinions on five resolutions — a proposed voter identification law, a measure limiting government growth, a call for cuts in federal income taxes, a requirement forcing women seeking an abortion first to undergo and view a sonogram, and this one:

Ballot Proposition #4: Public Acknowledgement of God

The use of the word “God”, prayers, and the Ten Commandments should be allowed at public gatherings and public educational institutions, as well as be permitted on government buildings and property.

YES or NO

We wonder if, while they’re at it, Republicans will also let us know their opinions about other freedoms protected by the First Amendment: speech, press, the right of peaceful assembly and the right to petition the government.… Read More

Texas Freedom Network

@SIECUS @kmillertfn @TXCapTonight This campaign for medically accurate, comprehensive and inclusive #SexEducation will stretch into next year when the TX State Board of Education is scheduled to make a decision. Find the TFN and SEICUS recs and ways to get involved at: tfn.org/sex-ed #TeachTheTruth pic.twitter.com/eoMv…