Asking Richard Wade About The Ethics of Lying To Stay In A Protective Closet

In four previous posts, I have discussed with the Friendly Atheist’s advice columnist Richard Wade the origins of his “Ask Richard” column, the nature of family conflicts over atheism, the problems with forming one’s identity based on one’s beliefs (or non-beliefs), and how atheists should respond to the possibly religious dimensions of Alcoholics Anonymous. In the installment of [Read More...]

Questioning Forgiveness

James K. McNulty discusses the downside to forgiveness: Despite a burgeoning literature that documents numerous positive implications of forgiveness, scholars know very little about the potential negative implications of forgiveness. In particular, the tendency to express forgiveness may lead offenders to feel free to offend again by removing unwanted consequences for their behavior (e.g., anger, [Read More...]

Norway’s State Philosopher

Below is some of Michael Moore’s documentary footage which he cut from Sicko. He explores Norway’s exceedingly high standard of living and the values which produce it.   Along the way he talks to Hynrik Syse, the philosopher who the government hired to manage the nation’s oil profits so that they would be used in the wisest [Read More...]

TOP Q: “How Is It Fair To Question Other People’s Identity-Forming Beliefs While Demanding Respect For One’s Own Belief-Formed Identities?”

I always tell my students as they start studying philosophy that it is crucial that they not associate their ideas too closely with themselves.  They need to get used to not taking criticism of their ideas personally. I warn them that if they cannot disassociate from their ideas when they fail, they will never be [Read More...]

The Religious Conservative’s False Choice: “Big Brother” Or “Heavenly Father”

In an e-mail to me, Caroline proposes thought provoking reasons for non-believers to encourage (or at least to not actively discourage) religious beliefs: It would also be nice if people would carry out actions in good conscience of just being decent human beings rather than in fear of reprisal in the afterlife, but as there [Read More...]

A Rape Victim’s Heartbreaking Testimony About Planned Parenthood’s Support

via PZ Myers comes a vital video by Chloe Heintz: UPDATE: Now there’s a follow up interview with Chloe from CBSNews.com Your Thoughts? [Read more...]

Can You Really Love Religious People If You Hate Their Religion?

Atheists do not exactly claim to “love sinners but hate sins” (if for no other reason than that most, if not all, of us reject the category of “sin” as a meaningful or valuable way to talk about ethical failure). Also, atheists may be more realistic than to think that we really do, or feasibly [Read More...]

Why “Loving The Sinner But Hating The Sin” Is Not An Option When Dealing With Gay People

Many a homophobic religious person has infamously claimed that when it comes to gays he “loves the sinner but hates the sin” and many a defender of the full dignity and ethical lives of gay people has judged such a compromised offer of love inadequate (if not insincere). This cannot be because it is impossible [Read More...]

What Is Love? Here’s My Theory.

This is a renamed repost of July 24, 2009 post called “How Do I Love Thee? Let Me Count The Ways”: In the first part of this series, I explored the reasons for rejecting “unconditional” love as a candidate for the ideal essence of love since as a concept it is riddled with numerous problems [Read More...]


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