Atheists in Music & Art

BarcelonaFountain

[Editor's Note: This is a guest post by AJ Johnson. Raised Baptist in the Bible Belt, she became an atheist after learning about evolution and the immoral verses in the Bible. She's a former development director of American Atheists and currently serves on the board of Recovering from Religion and as the development adviser for Black Atheists of America, as well as playing bass guitar in her spare time. Follow her on Twitter, or read her blog, Happiest Atheist.] Completing the Movement I … [Read more...]

On the Tragedy in Newtown

CandleInDark

I hate having to write posts like this, but it's too huge a story to ignore. Less than two weeks before Christmas, America is again reeling from a mass killing - one of several this year, but the worst in a while - at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. Not counting the shooter, who committed suicide at the scene, twenty-six people died, most of them young children. In politically motivated mass murders, like Anders Behring Breivik in Norway or Wade Michael Page in the … [Read more...]

Video: My Dating and Relationships Panel at Skepticon V

Skepticon Logo

          As I mentioned earlier, I took part in a discussion panel at Skepticon V last month, How Should Rationalists Approach Relationships and Marriage?The video of that panel is now available online, so if you'd like to see it, enjoy: Thanks to Jesse Galef for inviting me to participate, and thanks as well to my fellow panelists Chana Messinger, Matt Dillahunty, and Julia Galef. We'll have to do this again sometime... like maybe next year! … [Read more...]

Diversity Doesn’t Just Happen: A Response to Michael Shermer

We're talking about diversity in the skeptical community again, this time occasioned by some unfortunate and ignorant comments from Michael Shermer about atheism and skepticism being "a guy thing", which drew a predictably sharp response. As Jacques Rousseau said, it's just barely possible that Shermer might have meant this statement descriptively, rather than normatively. But he then proceeded to dig the hole much deeper with this comment on Twitter which leaves absolutely no room for … [Read more...]

The Great Panic of 2012 and the Balm of Skepticism

All throughout this year, I've been hearing people excitedly claiming that December 21, 2012, one week from today, will be the date of some major world event. Amusingly, the many New Age authors who've written about this date all have completely different ideas of what specifically is going to happen - they don't even agree on whether it's going to be good or bad. (See the inset image for this post for a few of the ideas that have been proposed: "Eloheim and the council", galactic alignment, … [Read more...]

Book Review: A Year of Biblical Womanhood

Summary: A personable, good-humored example of the liberal-theist cherry-picking ethic. I recently wrote about the evangelical writer Rachel Held Evans and whether her book, A Year of Biblical Womanhood, can undo Christianity's entrenched ideals of patriarchy. I still don't think that's likely, but I've read the book now, so I'd like to offer some more thoughts. Evans lives in Tennessee and describes herself as an evangelical Christian, but as evangelicals go, she's hardly typical. She belongs … [Read more...]

Why Is America’s Most Progressive Voting Block Often Overlooked?

This article was originally published on AlterNet. The renowned physicist Max Planck once said, "A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it." And this isn't just true of science: the same principle holds true in the political arena. Most progressive advances don't come about because vast numbers of people are persuaded to drop their … [Read more...]

The Republican Stupid-Party Spiral Dilemma

In an interview late last month, Republican senator Marco Rubio, who's widely viewed to be laying the groundwork for a 2016 presidential run, announced that he doesn't know how old the Earth is: I'm not a scientist, man. I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that's a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States. I can't help suggesting that perhaps … [Read more...]

The Bible as Engine of Extremism, Continued

In my previous post on "Southern Slavery As It Was", I cited two modern-day Christian pastors who claim that black slavery was a positive and beneficial institution. To throw some cold water on their rosy claims, in this post we'll hear from a person with firsthand experience of it: Frederick Douglass, the great American abolitionist and orator who himself escaped from bondage and later chronicled his experiences. I'll cite passages from Wilson and Wilkins' book asserting the gentle and … [Read more...]

Southern Slavery As It Was: The Bible as Engine of Extremism

This weekend I saw Lincoln, which was a tremendous movie. Daniel Day-Lewis gives a compelling performance as President Abraham Lincoln during the closing days of the Civil War, when he battled with a fractious Congress to ratify the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, which outlawed slavery permanently in the United States. Among the movie's many strong points is that it unambiguously presents the Civil War as first and foremost a battle over slavery (which, according to the people who started … [Read more...]


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