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Coalition fighting faith-based initiatives
Does anyone want to get involved in grassroots opposition to faith-based initiatives? The Nashville chapter of Americans United for the Separation of State and Church is asking for help. See excerpt of e-mail from Charles Sumner:

Date: 1 Feb 2005 11:05:32 -0000
From: Church-State-TN@yahoogroups.com
To: Church-State-TN@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [Church-State-TN] Digest Number 253



Senator Alexander is likely to play a key role in deciding the fate of
faith-based proposals in the U.S. Senate. The legislative department
of Americans United thinks he is important because he took a lead in
working on the Head Start bill during the last session, and the Senate
committee that he ran on this issue produced a bill that did not contain any
charitable choice language.

The national organizations that are members of the Coalition Against
Religious Discrimination (CARD) are trying to do a better job of
coordinating our grassroots efforts. Our hope is that once we put our
respective local activists in touch with one another, they will be able
to work together in similar ways to what we do at the national level.
Though the types of activity will vary from state to state in
accordance with the wishes of local activists, our initial hope is that the
grassroots groups will be able to set up in-district lobby visits with
key senators like Alexander during the congressional recess from March
21-25. The national office of Americans United will help to set up
these visits, and will provide talking points and tips about how to lobby.

Right now, all we’re asking is who from the chapter would be willing to
work on coalition efforts in Tennessee. This person would serve as the
main contact person on behalf of the chapter. This person should be
willing to have their contact information shared with the Tennessee
contacts from other groups in CARD. (The contact person would NEVER be
called or solicited in any way by other national organizations. Any
guidance from national would come to the contact person from AU.)

A list of the numerous organizations in the Coalition Against Religious
Discrimination will be provided upon request.

Charles Sumner will be away in March and unable to participate. So we
need a contact - possibly a small committee. Memphis has already
provided someone. Other areas need to participate. This is a
statewide and nationwide effort. Please help.


In Governor Bredesen's State of the State message today (1/31) advance
information tells us that he is considering some faith-based social
services. The details may be known by the time you read this. Watch
the media for details.

Nashville Chapter Americans United submitted a news release late on
January 30 to major media in Tennessee providing reasons why Tennessee
should be cautious in mingling church and state. This information
should be in the hands of the media in the event that Bredesen does seem to
venture too far into this morass. A copy of the release will be sent
upon request.

(other stuff deleted)

Posted by mjb
Feb. 02, 2005