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Tennessee bill to make Bible state book heads to governor

Tennesse bill to make Bible state bookHaving already made a .50-caliber sniper gun the official state rifle, Tennessee lawmakers voted Monday to make the Holy Bible the state’s official book.

The state Senate gave final approval Monday on a 19-8 vote despite arguments the measure conflicts with a provision in the Tennessee Constitution that “no preference shall ever be given, by law, to any religious establishment or mode of worship.”

TVNL Comment:  ....and please, please make the Triceratops the state animal.


Utah ranchers vow to stand up to government despite Oregon arrests

Utah ranchers On 23 January, a group of Utah ranchers gathered in Cedar City and made a pledge: they signed notices of “withdrawal of consent” to be governed – a statement rejecting the authority of the federal agencies that regulate grazing and charge fees to have livestock use public lands.

The ranchers were following in the footsteps of Arizona rancher LaVoy Finicum, who at the time was a leader of a land-use protest at an Oregon wildlife refuge and who had publicly refused to pay for grazing rights.


California and New York governors sign bills raising minimum wage to $15

California and New York pass fifteen dollar minimum wage lawsThe governors of California and New York acted on Monday to raise their states’ minimum wages to $15 an hour – the highest in the nation – as Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders again seized on wage disparity and the plight of the working poor as a defining issue in the presidential race.

Clinton joined Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York as he signed the law that will gradually boost that state’s pay rate and she predicted the movement would “sweep our country”.


Christian School Principal Jailed for Child Rape

Christian school principal charged with rapeThe principal of a tiny Christian school in a small Washington town has been charged with sexually assaulting two female students. Prosecutors say Douglas J. Allison, 55, even claimed that one of the young girls asked for it.

Allison was the principal and one of just two teachers at the Mountain View Christian School, a Seventh-day Adventist school that has just a dozen students. He is charged with raping and sexually assaulting a 10-year-old girl and her classmate, who came forward during the investigation.

Seventh-day Adventists are a Christian denomination who believe Christ’s return to Earth is imminent. Unlike most Christians, they observe the sabbath on Saturday.


Supreme Court upholds 'one person, one vote'

Supreme Court upholds 'one person, one vote'The Supreme Court on Monday unanimously ruled that states may continue dividing legislative seats according to total population instead of only eligible voters.

In the Evenwel v. Abbott decision, the justices ruled against a challenge to a practice established nationwide in the 1960s in which districts are drawn counting total population. The lawsuit argued that only eligible voters should be counted for district drawing, which would have ignored non-voting citizens such as children, immigrants and felons.


Is the end of days looming for fundamentalist sect in Utah?

UTA sectThe new federal courthouse in downtown Salt Lake City is a massive, futuristic cube of metal and glass that looks imposing, austere and, above all, impregnable. Armed guards patrol the exterior 24 hours a day.

But if a certain group of polygamous religious extremists in a lonely corner of southern Utah are to be believed, this Wednesday the walls will split open and fall when one of their leaders, Lyle Jeffs, appears before the judge in a major fraud case, according to former followers of his sect.


Mississippi's Confederate Heritage Month proclamation prompts outcry

onfederat monthThe Confederacy is rising again, this time using perhaps the final weapon in its arsenal: calendars.

Mississippi governor Phil Bryant recently proclaimed April to be Confederate Heritage Month, adding an official flourish to a longstanding tradition in his state and several others. April, he wrote in the proclamation, is “the month in which the Confederate States began and ended a four-year struggle”.


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