Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, will speak at four events today through Tuesday in St. Petersburg and Clearwater.
Lynn, a longtime civil liberties activist, said the principle of church-state separation is under greater assault now than at any time in the nation's history.
Lynn said in a media release that "Americans who care about their religious freedom must become involved or their fundamental right to join and support the religious institutions of their choice could be lost."
An attorney and an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ, Lynn will speak on the religious right's efforts regarding school and religion issues, as well as a church-state case pending in the U.S. Supreme Court and a national drive to grant tax-supported vouchers to parents to send children to schools of their choice.
Lynn served for eight years as legislative counsel for the Washington office of the American Civil Liberties Union. He has appeared on numerous television and radio broadcasts to debate and discuss First Amendment issues. He has debated conservative commentator Pat Buchanan twice and last year debated Pat Robertson on a special edition of William F. Buckley's Firing Line dealing with the religious right. Last December, he debated the Rev. Jerry Falwell and the Christian Coalition's Ralph Reed on two separate CNN broadcasts.
Lynn will speak at the following events:
6 tonight _ The Pinellas County Chapter of the ACLU will sponsor a potluck dinner at 2900 68th Ave. S, St. Petersburg. All members and friends are invited. Donation is $10. Lynn will speak informally to the group. Reservations are necessary. Call 327-0308 or 867-8994.
2-5 p.m. Sunday _ "Schools and Religion: From Vouchers to Prayer," a public meeting and rally at Unitarian Universalist Church of Clearwater, 2470 Nursery Road, Clearwater. An organizational meeting of the Pinellas County Chapter of Americans United for Separation of Church and State will follow the speech. For information, call Jeanne Pugh, 360-5823.
5:30-8 p.m. Monday _ "School Reform: Does Choice Work? _ What Are the Arguments and the Results?" part of the 1994 Academic Frontier Lecture Series at the University of South Florida Campus Activities Center, St. Petersburg. For information, call Associate Professor Darryl Paulson, 893-9582, or Associate Dean Winston Bridges, 893-9151.
Noon Tuesday _ "How the Religious Right is Dead Wrong," Tiger Bay Club luncheon, St. Petersburg Hilton and Towers, 333 First St. S. Call Janelle Barlas, 822-1001.