Outreach & Events - Freedom From Religion Foundation
Lauryn Seering

Lauryn Seering

%972 %America/Chicago, %2013

Time to fire up 'War on Christmas' again

SKMBT C35213111413361Want to fire a volley in the skeptics' annual War on Christmas while supporting FFRF's work in shoring up the state-church wall of separation? If so, feel free to shop till you drop as much as you care to at the Foundation's gift store to celebrate the upcoming winter solstice (the real reason for the season).

Go to ffrf.org/shop to see a full selection of freethought books (new and used), lapel pins, tote bags, music, solstice greeting cards, debaptismal certificates, lots of apparel, bookmarks, magnets, video DVDs, bumper stickers, bible warning stickers and nontracts (a "Heathen's Greeting" nontract explains the solstice).

“Most people think December is strictly for Christians and view the solstice as an intrusion, when actually it’s the other way around,” said Dan Barker, FFRF co-president and a former evangelical preacher. “People have been celebrating the winter solstice long before Christmas. We see Christianity as the intruder, trying to steal the natural holiday from all of us humans.”

heathensgreetings

Solstice cards come in 14 attractive varieties. The newest design is "Keep Saturn in Saturnalia" (celebrated Dec. 17 in ancient Rome, when masters served their slaves at a public banquet). Cards feature natural beauty from the great outdoors, along with whimsy such as cartoonist Steve Benson's "Yes, Virginia . . . There Is No God!"

The message was first conceived for FFRF's billboard campaign in 2009. ClearChannel Outdoor took down six billboards in the Las Vegas, Nev., area shortly after they went up. The company's Scrooge-like reaction led Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor to quip, " 'Tis the season for censorship. Who would have guessed there would be such delicate sensibilities in the city known for 'What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.'"reasonsgreetings

And yes, your "Heathen's Greetings" to family and friends can include Dan Barker's musical sentiments. “Adrift on a Star,” featuring Dan and friends, is new this year. The title song is his arrangement of a Yip Harburg poem.

The album’s showpiece is “Poor Little Me,” a collaboration between lyricist Dan and Broadway icon Charles (“Annie,” “Bye, Bye, Birdie”) Strouse, an atheist who received FFRF’s Emperor Has No Clothes Award in 2011.

So, as Dan would say:

O, ancient drums stop beating,
And superstitions fall!
It's time for Reason's Greetings,
For peace, goodwill to all.

The Texas State Board of Education has received nationwide attention after its strong religionist faction pushed an ideological agenda onto revisions of textbook and curriculum standards. As a result of several new requirements, the state board appointed a handful of creationists in their review group. So far, textbook publishers have largely ignored the suggestions made by reviewers. But we need your help to ensure these religiously motivated-changes in textbooks do not occur.

As you're aware, your state is one of the largest purchasers of textbooks, so as Texas curriculum and textbook standards goes, so goes the rest of the country.

Don’t let the religious right hijack our secular public schools!

Contact the Texas State Board of Education Now!

TAKE ACTION!

The final deadline to speak out against the Texas State Board of Education religionist revisions of curriculum and textbook changes is fast approaching. They will vote the week of Monday, Nov. 18 and the final vote with be Friday, Nov. 22.

1) Write the State Board of Education

Texas Education Agency
State Board of Education
1701 N. Congress Avenue
Austin TX 78701
(512) 463-9734
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

2) Write to individual board members

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Barbara Cargill (R), Chair
The Woodlands, TX
(512) 463-9007
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Thomas Ratliff (R), Vice Chair
P.O. Box 232
Mount Pleasant, TX 75456
(903) 717-1190
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Mavis Knight (D), Secretary
6108 Red Bird Court
Dallas, TX 75232
(214) 333-9575
(214) 339-9242 FAX
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Tom Maynard (R)
P.O. Box 2885
Georgetown, TX 78627
(512) 763-2801
(512) 532-9517
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Sue Melton-Malone (R)
101 Brewster
Waco, TX 76706
(254) 749-0415
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Martha M. Dominguez (D)
P.O. Box 960543
El Paso, TX 79996
(915) 373-3563
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Geraldine "Tincy" Miller (R)
1100 Providence Tower West
5001 Spring Valley Road
Dallas, TX 75244-3910
(972) 419-4000
(214) 522-8560 FAX
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Marisa B. Perez (D)
P.O. Box 276406
San Antonio, TX 78227
(210) 317-4651
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Patricia Hardy (R)
900 North Elm
Weatherford, TX 76086
(817) 598-2968
(817) 598-2833 FAX
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Lawrence A. Allen Jr. (D)
2130 Vermillion Oak St.
Fresno, Texas 77545
(713) 203-1355
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David Bradley (R)
2165 North Street
Beaumont, TX 77701
(409) 835-3808
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Ken Mercer (R)
P.O. Box 781301
San Antonio, TX 78278-1301
(512) 463-9007
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Donna Bahorich (R)
P.O. Box 79842
Houston, TX 77279
(832) 303-9091
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Marty Rowley (R), Vice Chair
701 South Taylor, Suite 500
Amarillo, TX 79101
(806) 373-6278
(806) 220-2812 FAX
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Ruben Cortez, Jr. (D)
735 Habana St.
Brownsville, TX 78526
(956) 639-9171
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3) Write letters now to local newspapers

Remember to keep letters to the editor brief (usually under 150 words) and sign your name, address and phone number (for verification purposes only). Send to your nearest local newspaper. Below is contact info for major news dailies in Texas:

Austin Statesman Review
Letters to the Editor
P.O. Box 670
Austin TX 78767
http://www.statesman.com/mailfriend/300/1934/d2c37d129f/

Dallas Morning News
Letters From Readers
P.O. Box 655237
Dallas TX 75265
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Houston Chronicle
Letter to the Editor
P.O. Box 4260
Houston TX 77210-4260
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
San Antonio Express News
Letter to the Editor
P.O. Box 2171
San Antonio TX 78297-2171
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POSSIBLE TALKING POINTS:

Use your own words if possible, or cut and paste wording below.

Vote NO on revisionist textbook revisions.
-Don't let personal religious beliefs influence an entire generation's educational quality. Listen to educational and academic experts in adopting curriculum standards, not ultra-right-wing theocrats.

Thank you for your help!

External News Links:

Huffington Post

Live Science

Compiled by Lauryn Seering

%725 %America/Chicago, %1980

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