Atheists sue Missouri officials over Baptist convention
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A group of atheists has sued Kansas City, Missouri, officials over the planned use of $65,000 in tourism tax dollars to aid an upcoming Baptist convention.
The Kansas City Star reports that American Atheists Inc. and two Kansas City members filed the lawsuit Friday against Kansas City Mayor Sly James, city manager Troy Schulte, the city council and the municipal government.
The lawsuit argues that using tax money to aid Modest Miles Ministries Inc. in preparing for the National Baptist Convention USA Inc. would advance a religious purpose in violation of American Atheists' right to be free from compelled support of religious institutions.
The city declined to comment on the lawsuit, but city spokesman Chris Hernandez says contract language would show that the money would be used for secular purposes.