Peter Montgomery, Religion Dispatches
Voters in North Carolina will cast ballots May 8 on an anti-gay initiative that would put into the state constitution a ban on same-sex couples getting married. The broadly worded initiative would also threaten any kind of legal recognition of same-sex couples, including benefits for domestic partners. WRAL's reporters have dug through the recent campaign finance filings and concluded that the anti-gay initiative is being pushed overwhelmingly by churches and religious nonprofits, while the opposition to the amendment is drawing most of its funds from individuals.
The biggest contributor to the anti-gay effort is the state-level Christian Action League, which has given $309,652.70, followed closely by the National Organization for Marriage at $302,589.52. Also notable are big contributions, $50,000 each, from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte and Diocese of Raleigh. Also kicking in major contributions are the American Family Association $20,000, Bayleaf Baptist Church $19,130, and First Baptist Church (Charlotte) $15,000.
Culture Warriors vs. Sex for Pleasure: Why the Right Wing is Wrong When it Comes to Sex, Lara Riscol, AlterNet
If prescribing to dogmatic absolutes worked, then the most conservative Christian red states wouldn’t have the highest rates of teen pregnancy, divorce and porn consumption.
Study: Atheists more driven by compassion than highly religious people, David Edwards, Raw Story
“Overall, this research suggests that although less religious people tend to be less trusted in the U.S., when feeling compassionate, they may actually be more inclined to help their fellow citizens than more religious people,” study co-author Robb Willer concluded.