This Is Why There Is War in the Mideast

The Jewish magazine Moment ran an article in its latest issue asking rabbis from a variety of Jewish sects how Israel can promote peace with its Arab neighbors (HT: Pharyngula). Most of the rabbis express fairly bland, liberal views about the importance of peace and tolerance, which are fine in themselves, although few of them offer any concrete suggestions as to what Israel might do differently.However, one rabbi, Manis Friedman of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement, was eager to make some … [Read more...]

A Dialogue with Quixote, Part VI

To my friend Ebonmuse,Offered with genuine respect to the readership and commentators of DA,The presumption of atheism, the hiddenness of God, the Problem of Evil, the Euthyphro dilemma, epistemic warrant, Pascal's wager, NOMA, Hume's critique of the miraculous, the Kalam cosmological argument...I'm near concluding that I've interacted with far more atheists — or perhaps far more atheists and agnostics of a different type than those who frequent internet blogs — than many here at DA. The ma … [Read more...]

Eric Hovind, Racist

Daylight Atheism readers undoubtedly remember Kent Hovind, a bottom-feeder creationist with a degree from a diploma mill and a phony $250,000 offer for anyone who could offer "proof of evolution". You probably also remember that Hovind is currently serving a ten-year prison sentence for federal tax evasion. But what you might not know is that Hovind's son, Eric, has a blog of his own - and judging by a recent post, the wingnut apple doesn't fall far from the crazy tree.The post, titled … [Read more...]

The Case for a Creator: Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble

The Case for a Creator, Chapter 3Having established Jonathan Wells' bona fides, let's get down to business. The first of his "icons" is the Miller-Urey experiment, a landmark study proving that the chemical building blocks of life could emerge relatively easily under conditions similar to those of the early Earth.This is not, strictly speaking, an "icon of evolution" at all. Miller-Urey was an experiment about abiogenesis, the question of how life first arose from nonliving precursors. This … [Read more...]

Finalist in the 3QD Science Prize

This post is purely to brag: the editors of the blog 3 Quarks Daily have selected the seven finalists for their 2009 Science Prize, and Daylight Atheism is among them!My post "Bands of Iron" is one of the seven that will be sent to 3QD's celebrity judge, Steven Pinker, who will pick the ultimate winner in one week's time. Whether I win or not, it's an honor to have made it this far out of so many initial competitors. My deepest thanks, again, to everyone who voted for me! I'll be sure to keep … [Read more...]

Science Needs Good PR

My recent post on Project Steve brought several comments arguing that it's pointless to take a survey of scientists, like this one from Freidenker:Frankly, I have no idea whatsoever how many scientists accept or reject evolution, and furthermore - it doesn't matter: even if all scientists all over the world rejected evolution, the evidence for evolution is still there....to really survey the scientific community for evolution support is truly a stupid thing to do: popularity has no bearing … [Read more...]

Green Fields

[Author's Note: This piece is dedicated to the memory of my grandmother, who passed away last week. The last time I saw her, several months before she died, she told me that she wasn't a "god-fearing" person. Freethought evidently runs deeper in my family than I had guessed, and in this small way, as in others, I'm glad I can carry on after her.]For those who are grieving, for those who mourn, and for all those who are burdened with the weary weight of sorrow, I have a prescription.Find … [Read more...]

Fundamentalism Is Alive and Well: A Reply to John Shelby Spong

I recently finished reading two books by the Anglican bishop John Shelby Spong, Rescuing the Bible From Fundamentalism and Why Christianity Must Change or Die. Spong is infamous for his near-total rejection of the tenets of Christianity, despite being a member of the clergy, and these books witness to that: he doesn't believe in miracles or an afterlife, denies the Trinity, denies the incarnation and resurrection of Jesus, and in fact, doesn't believe in God as an external supernatural being at … [Read more...]

The Case for a Creator: Meet Jonathan Wells

The Case for a Creator, Chapter 3Strobel's first interviewee is Jonathan Wells, author of the polemic Icons of Evolution. Icons attacks evolutionary theory by seeking to discredit what are, allegedly, its best-known supporting lines of evidence - its "icons" - such as the Miller-Urey experiment, Archaeopteryx, and the Cambrian Explosion.We'll get to that soon, but first I have to address what, to Strobel, must have been a bit of awkwardness. Virtually unique among modern advocates of ID, … [Read more...]

Mystery Does Not Equal God

By Sarah BraaschWhen I was about seven years old I almost died. It wasn't the only time I almost died, but it was one of my most colorful near death experiences. I had acquired some sort of flu bug or food poisoning or I don't know what, but my mother, in her either infinite ignorance or indifference, failed to procure anything in the way of medical attention for her ailing child. In all fairness, at first, I attempted to minimize my illness in order to be able to participate in a planned trip … [Read more...]