It seems we’ve survived yet another round of doomsday predictions surrounding last week’s earthquake and Monday’s solar eclipse! Though Marjorie Taylor Greene took to X to warn Americans of “many more things to come” should we fail to repent.

In the meantime, back in reality, I want to make sure you’re aware of these important state legislative updates:

A handful of extremely concerning bills are rapidly advancing through the Louisiana legislature. SB123 and HB334 would allow chaplains in public schools as volunteers or employees. Unfortunately, both were advanced with strong bipartisan support. HB71 passed the House and will move to the Senate. It would make Louisiana the first state to require schools to display the Ten Commandments in every classroom. The bill’s Christian nationalist author, Representative Dodie Horton, successfully passed a bill last year requiring public schools to display “In God We Trust.” On her latest effort to insert religion in schools, Horton said, “The Ten Commandments are the basis of all laws in Louisiana, and given all the junk our children are exposed to in classrooms today, it’s imperative that we put the Ten Commandments back in a prominent position.” Last but not at all least, the state is poised to pass a universal school voucher bill, HB475, even after investigative reporters revealed existing school privatization policies in Louisiana have driven families into low-performing private schools with little oversight.

School chaplain legislation also remains in play in Alabama (HB59) and Oklahoma (SB36), where lawmakers used a dirty legislative trick known as “shucking” to force a vote as soon as next week. American Atheists was one of 34 civil rights organizations that recently signed a letter opposing the installation of unqualified religious chaplains in public schools.

Earlier this month, Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds signed a so-called Religious Freedom Restoration Act (or RFRA) into law and did so brazenly at a private event hosted by a conservative, homophobic Christian organization. American Atheists submitted testimony in opposition to this bill, which opens the door for businesses and other private entities to discriminate, especially against women and LGBTQ Iowans. 

Virginia and Washington passed child marriage bans, and similar measures are pending in Missouri, California, and New Hampshire. American Atheists serves on the steering committee for the National Coalition to End Child Marriage and works closely with Unchained At Last to advocate for legislation that raises the age of marriage to 18. As of this week, 12 states have made it illegal for children to marry without exception. So, while there is more work to be done, it’s important to note the majority of these bans were passed in just the last two years, so we and our allies are making tremendous progress.

Did you know setting up a recurring contribution is the best way you can support our policy and advocacy work at American Atheists? Whether it’s $5, $10, or $20, monthly donors help ensure we can sustain this momentum well into the future.

Thank you for your support,

Alison Gill
Vice President, Legal & Policy


  • In Arizona, a far-right state legislator led a prayer circle and spoke in tongues on the chamber floor a day before the state’s highest court resurrected a Civil War-era law banning nearly all abortions.
  • In Florida, two recent courtroom victories have rolled back parts of discriminatory laws targeting LGBTQ Floridians. A settlement reached last month in a case challenging the state’s “Don’t Say Gay” law clarified that students and teachers can discuss sexual orientation and gender identity in classrooms and other school activities so long as it’s not part of instruction. And this Tuesday, a federal judge blocked education officials from enforcing a law requiring a trans teacher to use pronouns aligned with her sex assigned at birth, saying it violated her First Amendment rights.
  • In Salem, Massachusetts, police and an FBI joint terrorism task force are still searching for the person who threw an explosive device at the Satanic Temple early Monday morning, causing property damage but no injuries. Co-founder Lucien Graves said, “It can’t be overstated that this was definitely a horrific act of attempted terrorism and people could be hurt.”
  • In Catholic news, a Vatican doctrine released Monday declared gender-affirming surgery and surrogacy to be “grave violations of human dignity” on par with abortion and euthanasia and reiterated its rejection of gender theory. The document was quickly criticized by LGBTQ advocates, who warned the outdated and bigoted ideas could fuel violence and discrimination against trans people.
  • In Louisiana, the Supreme Court ruled 4-3 that priests have a property right not to be sued or held accountable for sexual assault.

American Atheists is a 501(c)(3) non-partisan, nonprofit educational organization that relies on the support of members like you. Contributions are tax-deductible. Our Federal Tax ID Number is 74-2466507 and our Combined Federal Campaign number is 52217.

American Atheists
225 Cristiani Street
Cranford, NJ 07016
United States

Copyright 2015 NYCA
Follow us: