Putting My Money Where My Heart Is
Tomorrow marks the one-year anniversary of my joining the Secular Coalition for America as its Executive Director. In the letter I wrote introducing myself I said, "I am here to lead the fight against the wave of religious privilege sweeping across the country. I know that with your support and activism, the Secular Coalition is our best chance to turn the tide."
It's been almost a full year since I wrote those words and they are as true today as they were then. The Secular Coalition for America is still the best chance we have to stop the incoming Congress and Trump Administration from knocking down the wall of separation between religion and state. The stakes are as high as they've ever been.
That's why from now until the end of the year, I will personally match every donation made to the Secular Coalition for America up to $20,000. You read that correctly. Whatever you give from now until December 31st, I will use my own money to double it.
I'm doing this because I believe in the work we do, I believe in the Secular Coalition's mission, I believe in its staff, and above all else, I believe in its supporters. This past year the Secular Coalition for America:
- Hosted the first ever Secular Caucus at the Texas Democratic Convention. This was the first time a secular organization has ever held an official caucus at a major party's convention.
- At that same convention, we succeeded in getting three policy resolutions adopted into the Texas Democratic party's official platform. They include a resolution calling for secular reproductive health policies, closing religious loopholes in child welfare laws, and striking the discriminatory ban on atheists holding office from the Texas state constitution.
- Held a reception for secular delegates and attendees at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
- Partnered with Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) to help secure the introduction of a Darwin Day Resolution in the Senate.
- Led more than 300 nonreligious Americans into meetings with two-thirds of Congressional offices on Capitol Hill, where we lobbied to stop tax dollars from funding junk science, abstinence-only education and advocated for funding evidence-based sex-education in our public schools.
- Organized lobby days for state chapters in Arizona, California, and North Carolina.
- Helped block the discriminatory Russell Amendment from being included in a routine military spending bill. Had it passed, the Russell Amendment would have made 28 million employees of federal contractors vulnerable to religiously-based discrimination.
- And just last week, the Utah Democratic party approved the creation of the first official Secular Caucus thanks to our advocacy on the ground!
These are not isolated victories, this is the impact made by secular Americans like you supporting our work. As 2017 draws closer, it is essential we have the resources we need to face whatever challenges the incoming Congress and Trump Administration throw at us.
I am not a person of means and I rely on my paycheck to pay my mortgage and other bills. However, I am putting $20,000 on the line because whatever happens, I want to be able to say I did everything I could to fight back. At this pivotal moment, when the stakes have never been greater, please join me in supporting the Secular Coalition for America.
Larry T. Decker
Become a Secular Activist
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