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Senator says push to put ‘In God We Trust’ in public schools isn’t about religion
Jan 22, 2019 · 1 

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By Chris Dunker “In God We Trust” first appeared on United States currency in 1864, at the height of the Civil War, before it was adopted as the national motto during the advent of the Cold War in 1956. The text, which is part of the little-sung fourth verse of the “Star-Spangled Banner,” appears in …


Supreme Court allows Trump restrictions on transgender troops in military to go into effect as legal battle continues
Jan 22, 2019

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By Robert Barnes and Dan Lamothe The Supreme Court on Tuesday allowed President Trump’s broad restrictions on transgender people serving in the military to go into effect while the legal battle continues in lower courts. The justices lifted nationwide injunctions that had kept the administration’s policy from being implemented. It reversed an Obama-administration rule that …


Trump Administration Wants New Restriction on Abortion Coverage
Jan 22, 2019

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By Ally Boguhn The Trump administration proposed a rule Thursday that includes a provision restricting insurance coverage for abortion care. Health-care experts said the rule is meant to steer insurers away from covering abortion services. The abortion restriction was included in a proposed “2020 Payment Notice” from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), a division of the U.S. Department of Health and …


Karen Pence’s Job at an Anti-LGBT School Is Definitely the Taxpayers’ Business
Jan 22, 2019

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By Sarah Jones Karen Pence, second lady of the United States, is going back to work. But as the Huffington Post reported on January 15, there’s an unsavory twist to this tale of female empowerment. Pence is resuming a position at Immanuel Christian School in Springfield, Virginia, and Immanuel refuses admission to LGBT students. And to students with LGBT …


1st Interstellar Visitor ‘Oumuamua Is Actually Not That Special
Jan 18, 2019

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By Hanneke Weitering SEATTLE — A cigar-shaped space rock named ‘Oumuamua caused quite a stir when it became the first interstellar visitor discovered in our solar system. Is it an asteroid, a comet or an alien spacecraft? While astronomers continue to work on answering these big questions, one thing has become certain: ‘Oumuamua probably isn’t that …


The Cerebellum Is Your “Little Brain”—and It Does Some Pretty Big Things
Jan 18, 2019

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By Diana Kwon For the longest time the cerebellum, a dense, fist-size formation located at the base of the brain, never got much respect from neuroscientists. For about two centuries the scientific community believed the cerebellum (Latin for “little brain”), which contains approximately half of the brain’s neurons, was dedicated solely to the control of …


Trump’s evangelical base has shrunk
Jan 18, 2019

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By Mark Silk At the beginning of the year, the Washington Post asked Jerry Falwell, Jr. whether there was anything Donald Trump could do that would endanger his support among evangelical leaders. “No,” Falwell replied. “I know anything he does, it may not be ideologically ‘conservative,’ but it’s going to be what’s best for this country, and I …


Mississippi May Mandate Ten Commandments and Pledges to State, U.S. Flags in Schools
Jan 18, 2019

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By Ashton Pittman JACKSON — Mississippi law would require schoolchildren to recite the Pledge of Allegiance and see the Ten Commandments be displayed on public-school walls under new bills in the Legislature this session, requirements that may violate the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. One would also require Mississippi teachers to teach Mississippi’s pledge glorifying …


Anti-Vaccine Movement Joins Ebola, Drug Resistance on List of Top Global Threats
Jan 17, 2019

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By Rachael Rettner A new list of top global health threats from the World Health Organization (WHO) reads like a “who’s who” of public health hazards: Pandemic flu. Ebola. Drug resistance. But tucked in this list of much-talked-about threats is one perhaps-surprising inclusion: the anti-vaccine movement. The list, released this week, highlighted “10 of the many …


Cryptic DNA sequences may help cells survive starvation
Jan 17, 2019 · 1 

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By Michael Marshall Patches of seemingly meaningless DNA dotted throughout the genome might actually have a function: helping cells to survive starvation. Two studies published in Nature on 16 January suggest that these stretches of non-coding DNA called introns help to control the rate at which cells grow, conserving energy when food becomes scarce. Genes carry the information …


NY Legislators Must Help Orthodox Jewish Kids and Rescind the Felder Amendment
Jan 17, 2019

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By Hemant Mehta As we’ve posted about before, New York State Sen. Simcha Felder — a “Democrat” who caucused with the Republicans, giving them a one-vote majority — essentially held the state’s budget hostage until it agreed not to interfere with the curriculum at yeshivas, the schools for Orthodox Jews. That meant there could be no oversight of …


A Christian Homeless Shelter is Suing Over the Right to Reject Trans People
Jan 17, 2019 · 1 

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By Sarahbeth Caplin The same conservative legal group that said it was okay for a baker to deny services to a gay couple is suing the city of Anchorage, Alaska over a Christian-run women’s shelter that wants to deny help to transgender clients. Alliance Defending Freedom says Hope Center should have the ability to say no to trans …