Hobby Lobby’s Biblical Empire: How Steve Green Means to Christianize America

Plus: Debate on Israel, and the last essay of murdered writer Avijit Roy

For Immediate Release: March 5, 2015
Contact: Paul Fidalgo, Communications Director
press@centerforinquiry.net - 207-358-9785

FI

For Hobby Lobby President Steve Green, a major victory in the Supreme Court wasn’t enough. As we learn in the latest issue of Free Inquiry, Green doesn’t just seek to exert religious control over his own employees but believes he has been commanded by God to fully align the United States under the authority of the Christian Bible and “remake the nation in God’s image.”

Being granted a sweeping exemption to the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive mandate was a mere iceberg tip when it comes to Steve Green and Hobby Lobby. Journalist and author Thomas Larson traces the story of Hobby Lobby and the Green family back to a time when they were convinced that God had intervened and turned their struggling store from a teetering business into a multi-billion-dollar success. Since that time, Green has made it his mission to use that fortune to infuse America’s culture and public schools with what he deems to be “biblical truth.”

With Green personally funding a Bible-centered museum in the National Mall, as well as a Bible-based public school curriculum, Larson writes that Green’s two-pronged assault on secularism emanates from “a command-and-control center in Washington, D.C.,” a kind of “Vatican writ small,” utilizing a massive fortune and a high degree of technological savvy, all in the service of his “Christianizing mission.”

Also in this issue: Free Inquiry gives Pandora’s box a vigorous shake before opening its lid for a heated debate on the “Middle East Deadlock,” with authors on all sides weighing in on Israel and its conflict with Palestine and the Arab world, including whether secular humanists ought to support Israel’s actions and whether Israel ought to exist at all. Free Inquiry Editor Tom Flynn is joined by Edward Tabbash, Sheldon F. Gottlieb, Barry F. Seidman, and Guillermo Kuhl in round one of what will be an ongoing and no doubt tumultuous debate.

Finally, the April/May issue of Free Inquiry features what has tragically turned out to be its final essay from Bangladesh-American freethought writer Avijit Roy, whose brutal murder by Islamic extremists on February 27 shocked the world. His article, “The Virus of Faith,” details some of the very threats against his life from Islamists who could not abide his advocacy for science, reason, and secularism.

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The Center for Inquiry (CFI) is a nonprofit educational, advocacy, and research organization headquartered in Amherst, New York, with executive offices in Washington, D.C. It is also home to both the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry and the Council for Secular Humanism. The mission of CFI is to foster a secular society based on science, reason, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values. CFI‘s web address is www.centerforinquiry.net.

Free Inquiry is a bimonthly magazine, published by the Center for Inquiry, in association with the Council for Secular Humanism, featuring thoughtful and provocative commentary from such leading political and social commentators as Arthur Caplan, Greta Christina, Nat Hentoff, and Russell Blackford. Launched in 1980, Free Inquiry has a paid circulation of approximately 34,000 worldwide.