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Separation of Church and State? How About Separation of School and State?

Written By: Travis Buhler  |  Posted: Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

            About 150 people gathered on a Thursday evening this April to hear a leading atheist and a local pastor discuss issues concerning the first amendment and the separation of church and state.  The event was sponsored by the UWEC Freethought Society and the Chippewa Valley Branch of the ACLU.  Their purpose according to ACLU leader Elizabeth Wolf was because "we think that first amendment rights are really hitting the front page and are critical… there's conflicts all over."  She cited numerous cases of religious monuments, public school curricula choices, and prayers in schools and government functions.

             Dan Barker was chosen to represent the atheist views on the issue.  He is the cofounder and president of Freedom from Religion, a civil liberties group that challenges laws and practices by federal, state, and local governments that support official recognition of the existence of God.  Barker's intent was "to educate the public about the importance of keeping religion and government separate."

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