After I Deconverted: I Was Deeply Ambivalent; What Was I to Make of Sex, Love, Alcohol, Bisexuality, Abortion, 9/11, Religious Violence, Marxism, or the Yankees?

This is a long installment of my ongoing series covering my journey before, during, and after my deconversion from Christianity. Since I think it is interesting how all the ambivalences, contradictions, anxieties, and displacements that I was experiencing parallel and inform each other, I am deciding to post it all as one episode in the series, rather than break each easily isolatable vignette into its own post. For the busy or the short attention spanned, I have made it easier to read in multiple sittings or to skim by breaking it into subsections according to themes. [Read more...]

5 Reasons The Supreme Court, and Not Just States, Should Acknowledge Gay Marriage

With an encouraging high of 58% of Americans now supporting gay marriage, it is beginning to look excitingly inevitable that gay people will finally have full equality before the law with respect to marriage any day, year, or decade now. It is possible that this will happen as soon as this summer when the Supreme [Read More...]

If The Ten Commandments Really Were The Basis Of Our Legal System

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If the Ten Commandments were really the basis of our laws, they’d be a lot less tolerable. [Read more...]

An Aphorism

The only way to beat the system is to master the system; but as you master the system, the system masters you. [Read more...]

On Criticizing Religious Statements In The Wake of Tragedy

I have no interest in criticizing the solace people find in religion as they mourn. I only criticize the cruel things religious people say to hurt others who are mourning and the religious attempts to exploit people’s terror and trauma to scapegoat others and pave the emotional way for future theocratic laws. [Read more...]

Occupy Wall Street Launches A Charity To Bail Indebted People Out

Some people identifying themselves with Occupy Wall Street have an ingeniously cost-efficient and politically symbolic charity plan that can provide crucial aid to epxloited debtors–even if it will probably only help a relatively very small number of affected people: David Rees explains: Like many folks, Occupy Wall Street has been some doing good work in [Read More...]

Coloring the 2012 Electoral Map by County, Population Density, and Partisan Split

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Chris Howard colors the electoral map to reflect the degree to which each county is red, blue, or purple—and populated or not. [Read more...]

Camels With Hammers Liveblogging 2012 Election

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2:44 am: The real winner of the night, is rational, evidence based thinking. As the mainstream pundits kept insisting this race was too close to call and a nail biter, Nate Silver just kept making arguments based on legitimate numbers run through rational models. And the outcome so far is looking to be 100% as [Read More...]

Marginalized Groups, Civility, Privilege, and What Replaces Religion: An Interview with James Croft

I just finished having a great conversation with James Croft of the blog Temple of the Future for this week’s episode of The Camels With Hammers Show. There is a special announcement related to James’s blog at the end of the interview. We had some technical difficulties so the interview took the form of two parts.

In the first video we talked primarily about my stance in favor of civility. I have in recent months controversially argued that members of marginalized groups shouldn’t embrace using abusive language as a routine method of fighting oppression. I decided to run these views by James, who is himself gay and a vigorous activist for both atheist and gay causes.

In the second video, James answers my questions about whether people with social privilege can ever learn enough about out-group experiences in order to offer critical suggestions to members of marginalized groups or whether an epistemic privilege stemming from marginalization can be absolute. Then the rest of the video is spent discussing questions about controversies in the atheist community related to how to relate to religious people and how atheists can go about meeting people’s needs that most people presently turn to religion for–without turning atheism into a religion itself.

Click on the title of this post to see the videos! [Read more...]


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