How My Best Friend Helped End My Faith and then Became an Openly Gay Monk

John Hazlet was my best friend in college. We were both philosophy majors and Christians at Grove City College, one of the nation’s most politically conservative and religiously evangelical respected liberal arts institutions. John’s struggles with his homosexuality (which he initially revealed only to me) and with suicidal ideation, and his unrestrained and relentless skeptical [Read More...]

How I Wish The Homosexuality Debate Would Go

Trevin Wax at The Gospel Coalition wrote a hypothetical conversation between an anti-homosexuality Christian pastor and a pro-gay talk show host called “How I Wish the Homosexuality Debate Would Go”. Since this article was recommended on Facebook no less than 18,000 times, I take it that many Christians found it reasonable, likely even taking it to be an ideal representation of their own views. So, I want to take seriously this Christian speaking for many other Christians in his own fictional representative’s words. In this post, I offer the remarks I would make were I also on this show, responding to the hypothetical pastor’s each comment. [Read more...]

My Systematic, Naturalistic Empowerment Ethics, With Applications to Tyrants, the Differently Abled, and LGBT People

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If you only ever read one thing I write about ethics. Let it be this.

This is a long, comprehensive, systematic defense of a naturalistic atheistic ethics, grounded in an attempt to be rationally coherent, consistent, and developed based on objective, factual premises that should not be very controversial in themselves.

This post also features an explanation of how we can say ethics is rooted in nature without coming to anti-LGBT conclusions that Catholics claim “natural law” would dictate. It also includes an explanation about how we can talk about power as a good thing (contra-Christian messaging) without endorsing abuses of power. And it has an explanation of how we can talk aspirationally about an ethics of maximizing human greatness without being ableists who throw the “disabled” under the bus in the process.

This is one of the longest posts of my original writing I have ever put up. I think it’s worth it though. It unites what could have been 8 separate posts together for the sake of putting my arguments about crucial applied topics in a relatively full context. [Read more...]

Colbert Covers A Gay Mayor In Eastern Kentucky

Watch the whole thing up to the poignant ending. Tears started rolling for me with the remark at 4:27. Relatedly, I recommend you read Zach Booth’s guest post on Camels With Hammers from April of last year entitled “Another View From Mississippi”. Zach has gone on to recently get a regular writing gig at Occupy.com. [Read More...]

Defense of Marriage Act Section 3 Declared Unconstitutional; Court Refuses To Rule on Prop 8

Read the opinions here. The conclusion: The class to which DOMA directs its restrictions and restraints are those persons who are joined in same-sex marriages made lawful by the State. DOMA singles out a class of persons deemed by a State entitled to recognition and protection to enhance their own liberty. It imposes a disability [Read More...]

Talking About Gay Marriage and Prostitution on The Ashley F. Miller Show

Ashely F. Miller of the blog Ashley F. Miller hosted her inaugural episode of The Ashley F. Miller Show and Mavaddat Javid and I were her guests. First we speculated about the prospects for this week’s Supreme Court rulings on Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act. Then we talked about themes brought up in [Read More...]

A Christian Friend Told Me This Video Made Him Pro-Gay

A Christian friend told me this video convinced him homosexuality wasn’t sinful after all. So, I figured I would offer it for Christian readers to consider and for pro-gay friends, whether Christian or otherwise, to pass on to their Christian friends, whether they be pro-gay or anti-gay. [Read more...]

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...]

I Debate My Friend, an Openly Gay Benedictine Monk, about the Catholic Church and its Views on Gays

Bede Hazlet, an openly gay Benedictine monk, and I vigorously debate the moral and intellectual value of Roman Catholic authoritarianism and the Church’s views on gays. We also talk about Bede’s struggles with depression, the monastic life of celibacy, and whether celibacy infantilizing priests contributed to the child rape scandals in the Catholic church. [Read more...]


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