Lawsuit Forces California Dept. Of Education To Remove Aztec God Chants
In response to a lawsuit filed on behalf of parents, The California Department of Education will no longer be teaching students two religious chants to Aztec gods from its ethnic studies curriculum. The program, was adopted last May, featured a section called “Affirmation, Chants, and Energizers,” which included an invocation of five Aztec deities called “In Lak Ech Affirmation.” The affirmations addressed the deities by their names, acknowledged them as sources of knowledge and power, called on their assistance, and expressed thanksgiving to them. Read more about the lawsuit here.
Supreme Court Questions Boston’s Refusal to Fly Christian Flag
The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments Tuesday on whether Boston city officials wrongfully denied a request to fly the Christian flag at City Hall. The nation’s high court heard arguments in the case of Harold Shurtleff, et al. v. Boston, MA, et al., with the justices expressing skepticism of the arguments on both sides. Shurtleff’s request to fly the Christian flag (which features a cross) outside of City Hall on Constitution Day 2017 was denied based on a policy that gives the city discretion on which flags it can fly on the City Hall flagpoles. The court will decide if the denial was unlawful discrimination and censorship. Read more about the lawsuit here.
Former Israeli Leader Benjamin Netanyahu Considering Pleas Deal In Corruption Trial
Benjamin Netanyahu, who lost the premiership of Israel last June after 12 consecutive years in power, is accused of bribery, fraud, and breach of trust in a series of complicated cases. He has denied all charges. Now after vowing to fight all charges, he is considering a plea deal which would keep him out of prison but also out of politics for the coming years. The deal would likely limit his sentence to a fine and several months of community service. But it would state that Netanyahu’s wrongdoing amounted to “moral turpitude,” a determination that would ban him by law from holding public office for at least seven years. Read more about the plea deal here.
Group Donates 20 Million Dollars Towards Preservation Of Black Churches
$20 million dollars has been donated towards efforts to preserve, rebuild, and share the stories of historically Black churches. The donation was made by philanthropic foundation Lily Endowment Inc. to the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund. The money will go to help congregations including one that was slammed during the tornado that killed more than 20 people in Mayfield, Kentucky, last month. Rather than just fixing broken windows or straightening rafters, the project will provide assistance with things including asset management and helping historic churches tell their own stories, said Brent Leggs, executive director of the fund. Read more about the donation here.