New Books and Books to Give Away

Hemant Mehta has just published a new book, The Young Atheist's Survival Guide. It's about the growing and increasingly important demographic of atheist high schoolers - their trials and travails, the opposition and sometimes shocking persecution they've faced in their schools and their communities, and the hope they offer for the future of the secular movement. Here's Hemant on what he set out to accomplish by writing it:There are more atheists under the age of 30 than ever before. While a … [Read more...]

The Dying Branch of Bigotry

The 2008 elections, in which pro-gay-marriage campaigners won a sweep at the ballot box, is a clear sign that the tide of society is shifting in favor of equality. We've known for a long time that this was coming, since the younger generations now replacing the older ones are overwhelmingly comfortable with equal rights. In the Western world, prejudice is like a dying branch - it may still have leaves, but it's dead at the base, and the rot is only going to spread upwards. Still, there are some … [Read more...]

Single-Issue Lives: On Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Hero Worship

[Editor's Note: Please welcome guest blogger Andrew Tripp, author of Considered Exclamations and president and co-founder of the DePaul Alliance for Free Thought, a Secular Student Alliance and Center for Inquiry on Campus affiliate. I invited Andrew to write this post following a conversation we've been having intermittently, over Twitter, over e-mail and in person at Skepticon, over the last several weeks. I don't necessarily endorse all the conclusions in this essay - I'm still making up my … [Read more...]

What the Bishops Have to Say For Themselves

Ireland's Catholic bishops have released an official statement on the death of Savita Halappanavar, to my surprise. It may well be that the outcry was so great, they felt obligated to respond. If so, it would be a rare instance of the church being swayed by external pressure. However, the statement itself doesn't say anything new or specific. Mostly, it just reiterates the church's stance on abortion, which is this:Where a seriously ill pregnant woman needs medical treatment which may put … [Read more...]

New on AlterNet: Reasons to Boycott the Catholic Church

My latest column has been posted on AlterNet, 50 Reasons to Boycott the Catholic Church. In it, as you might have guessed from the title, I list fifty arguments for why the Roman Catholic church is a thoroughly immoral organization and an enemy of progress. If this gets a good reception, I'll write a sequel with fifty more! Read the excerpt below, then click through to see the rest:Savita's death is just the latest in a long line of tragedies directly attributable to the doctrines and … [Read more...]

Fighting War the Biblical Way

After several days, the fragile ceasefire in the latest iteration of Israel and Gaza's endless war is still holding. But while the bombs were falling, there was no shortage of voices calling for the battle to be escalated even further, like Gilad Sharon, son of the former Israeli Prime Minister, who wrote in an op-ed:"We need to flatten entire neighborhoods in Gaza. Flatten all of Gaza. The Americans didn't stop with Hiroshima - the Japanese weren't surrendering fast enough, so they hit … [Read more...]

Why Rachel Held Evans Won’t Change Christianity

Some progressive Christian bloggers I respect have been writing enthusiastically about a new book, Rachel Held Evans' A Year of Biblical Womanhood, which they say proves that the Bible has been misused to justify patriarchy and demands for female submission. When the book became a bestseller despite evangelical denunciation, they've seen it as proof that a cultural shift is underway among Christians. I haven't read the book myself, but I'm not so optimistic. I'd be happy if they were right, but … [Read more...]

Questions for Pro-Lifers

Earlier this week, I answered a set of "tough questions" posed to advocates of reproductive choice. Well, turnabout is fair play. Although millions of religious people want abortion to be outlawed, they're surprisingly vague on the details. What exactly would their ideal society look like? How would they write the law and how would violators be punished? These are plainly important and relevant questions that I've never seen anti-choicers address in a clear and comprehensive way. To help them … [Read more...]

Answering Christian Questions for Pro-Choicers

In an article on the Gospel Coalition website, a Christian writer named Trevin Wax asserts that anti-choice politicians are held to a higher standard than pro-choice ones. He lists ten "hard questions" that he thinks pro-choice candidates aren't asked often enough. I'm not a politician, but I thought I would take a shot at answering them.1. You say you support a woman's right to make her own reproductive choices in regards to abortion and contraception. Are there any restrictions you would … [Read more...]

Skype It to Me

So, I've decided to sign up for Skype after getting several invitations to use it for speaking gigs. (Apparently, sometime when I wasn't paying attention, this became a thing that everyone has.) I don't really know anything about how this works, but my profile name is daylightatheism. If you'd like to add me as a friend or whatever, feel free to do that. I suppose, now that I have the webcam and the microphone, that I could use it for Google+ Hangouts as well. Anyone interested in something … [Read more...]


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