Thursday, June 27, 2002

  • Reverend Billy Invites You to Super Rallies This Weekend

    Reverend Billy of the Church of Stop Shopping stops into the firehouse studio to invite listeners and viewers to attend and celebrate at super rallies this weekend in Portland, Maine, and New Haven, Connecticut. [includes rush transcript]

  • The G8 Hides from Protesters in Canada and Decides Africa’s Future

    President Bush disrupted and derailed the Group of 8 Summit in Canada yesterday when he announced the U.S. would cut off aid to the Palestinians if they failed to remove Arafat from office. The G8 leaders were originally slated to discuss "ways to combat terrorism," the Kyoto Accords, HIV and AIDS in Africa, and cleaning up Russia’s biological and nuclear weapons sites. Instead they spent the first day mulling Bush’s so-called Middle East proposal. The Canadian government had done its utmost to control the meeting’s agenda and make sure it went according to plan. It was particularly determined to keep activists at a distance and quash the kind of protests that erupted at the G8 meeting in Genoa last July. The Canadian government set this G8 meeting in the remote and exclusive Kananaskis resort in the Canadian Rockies, 60 miles from the nearest city, to keep protesters at bay and prevent input from ordinary people on major economic and development issues, such as the New Partnership For Africa’s Development, or NEPAD. [includes rush transcript]

  • Federal Court of Appeals Declares Pledge of Allegiance Unconstitutional, Rules "One Nation Under God" Violates Separation of Church and State

    A three-member panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit on Wednesday declared the Pledge of Allegiance is unconstitutional because the phrase "one nation under God" violates the separation of church and state. Judge Alfred Goodwin wrote in the 2-to-1 decision that the words "one nation under God" are just as objectionable as a statement that "we are a nation 'under Jesus,' a nation 'under Vishnu,' a nation 'under Zeus,' or a nation 'under no god,'" because none of the statements are neutral with respect to religion. The ruling set off a firestorm on Capitol Hill, where senators broke from their discussion on how much to spend on the military to pass a unanimous resolution condemning the ruling. The ruling came in a lawsuit filed in Federal District Court in Sacramento by an atheist, Michael Newdow, our guest, whose daughter attended elementary school in the Elk Grove Unified School District near the state capital. [includes rush transcript]

  • The History of the Pledge: How It Changed from a Socialist Peace Pledge to a Patriotic Tool to Root Out Communists in the McCarthy Era

    After a three-member panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has declared the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional, saying the phrase "under God" violates the separation of church and state, we examine the history of the Pledge of Allegiance with Dr. John Baer, author of The Pledge of Allegiance: A Short History, and Ellen Schrecker, author of several books on McCarthyism, including Many Are the Crimes: McCarthyism in America, and professor of history at Yeshiva University. [includes rush transcript]

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