High Percentage of Southern Republicans Believe Obama is Muslim: News Roundup

In the news: southern republicans believe Obama is Muslim, a court battle is waging in Britian over the right to wear crosses at work, atheists are staging a public rock festival on a military base, and other stories.

After years of battling false claims and viral emails alleging that he is a Muslim, President Obama hasn’t gotten far among Republican voters in Alabama and Mississippi – about half still believe he is Muslim and about 1 in 4 believes his parents’ interracial marriage should have been illegal, a new poll shows.
 
The poll of Mississippi Republicans found that 52% said they believed Obama is a Muslim, 36% weren’t sure and only 12% said they believed he is a Christian. He fared slightly better in Alabama, where 45% said he is a Muslim, 41% weren’t sure, and 14% said he is a Christian. LA Times
 
ABC’s new fall show, “GCB,” met with some objections from conservative and Christian groups from its inception, and Friday Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich threw in his opinion about the show, saying it was an example of the “bias of elite media.”
 
The show, starring Kristin Chenoweth, is based on the novel “Good Christian Bitches” by Kim Gatlin but the title was changed to “GCB” for the show.
 
Gingrich told a crowd of mostly teenagers at a campaign stop at Gulfport High School that the network running the show would have handled a show with the word “Muslim” differently. ABC News
 
Christian activists in Britain are furious at the arguments their government will use against them when Europe's highest court considers whether employees have the right to wear crosses that show over their uniforms.
 
Britain will argue that the two Christian women at the center of the case had the option of quitting their jobs and working elsewhere, so they are not covered by European human rights law, according to legal papers obtained by CNN.
 
"Employees who face work requirements incompatible with their faith, and have the option of resigning and seeking alternative employment, cannot claim for a breach of Article 9" of the European Convention on Human Rights, Britain will argue.
 
The government will also say that wearing a cross is not a requirement of Christianity, so wearing one in public is not protected by the law. CNN
 
After more than a year of planning, atheists in the military will stage a public festival and rock concert celebrating their lack of religious beliefs at North Carolina's Fort Bragg, one of the largest U.S. military bases.
 
Dubbed "Rock Beyond Belief," the event is believed to be the first of its kind to highlight "freethought" — atheism, humanism and skepticism — on a U.S. military base. USA Today
 
New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly on Thursday challenged city council members who want to create an inspector general to regulate the department's surveillance of Muslims, saying his department needs no additional oversight.
 
In sometimes heated exchanges with council members at a budget hearing, Kelly defended his department's counterterrorism surveillance program as well as another crime-fighting policy, the stopping, questioning and frisking of people on the street. Huffington Post