Friday Night Music: Not Your Way

We're going to need some anthems of resistance over the next few years, and this is a good one from the MisterWives (see the lyrics) that's also catchy as hell:What are you listening to to get through the Trump administration? … [Read more...]

Threads of 2016

For many reasons, 2016 was a year that most of us would like to forget. But there are some good things too that are worth an annual wrapup, and so we begin with...Family MattersIn September, I became a parent. I wrote about how child-raising cries out for communal effort and the lessons humanists should take from that. I also listed 20 life lessons I'll teach my son when he's old enough to appreciate them.Later in the year, some old family albums inspired me to contemplate the … [Read more...]

From the Mailbag: Activism Makes a Difference

As you can imagine, I've been feeling pretty pessimistic since the 2016 election. It's seriously undermined my positive and optimistic view of America's future.But I've always believed that minds are changed one at a time, and as slow and difficult as that is, it's the only way to bring about lasting transformation in a democracy. This week, I got an e-mail that reminded me of that. It's from Patrick, a high school senior:I became non-religious (or, as I would call it now, atheist) in … [Read more...]

New Channel, Same Old Atheism

You may have noticed a change here at Patheos. All of us secular bloggers used to be grouped under the Atheist channel, but no longer. We're now the Nonreligious channel. Here's the official announcement on the Secular Spectrum group blog.To reassure some people who were worried: there was no pressure from above to expunge our blogs of the dreaded term "atheist". It was an internal channel decision, proposed and discussed among ourselves. There was considerable debate, but there was no … [Read more...]

Friday Night Music: The One Moment

The rock band OK Go is famous for their high-concept music videos (like the amazing zero-gravity dance video I mentioned once before), but this might be one of their cleverest ideas yet. It's 4 seconds of high-speed video, slowed down to 4 minutes: … [Read more...]

I Get Religious Mail: St. John’s Folly

I'm continually surprised by what people are willing to declare a "charitable" cause and ask others for money for. This week, I got a solicitation in the mail that pushes those boundaries even further:This letter is asking for money to help pay for the upkeep of St. John the Divine, a huge Episcopal cathedral on the upper west side of Manhattan. Ironically, I know this building well - it's right down the block from where I lived in Morningside Heights when I was in Columbia. … [Read more...]

Open Thread: Love & Kindness

The next few years are going to be a dark time. I like to think that I'm a generally optimistic person, but I've found precious little to be cheerful about in these past two weeks, and giving up on activism entirely is a thought that's crossed my mind. In the months to come, I feel as though we're all going to need reminders that there's goodness in the world and that it's worth defending.So, let's have a thread devoted to love and kindness. This is the place to share something that gives … [Read more...]

Searching for the Path Ahead

If you've been paying attention, you may have noticed that my blog output has been spotty since the election. Part of that was the expected emotional low I felt in the days immediately afterward, but I'm mostly past that. However, I have an admission to make. I'm stuck at a dilemma, and I don't see a way to move past it.Here's the problem I'm having: I don't know if I want to keep writing about politics. Truthfully, I don't see what the point is.I have no doubt that I could spend the … [Read more...]

What to Do Now

This is a guest post by my wife Elizabeth, who blogs and podcasts at Political Flavors. Follow her on Twitter at @MissCherryPi.I'm an optimist and so Trump's election came as a huge shock to me. I was so sure Hillary Clinton would be our next president I never even considered what this would feel like. On election night, family and friends who knew of my certainty in a Clinton victory texted me things like "I'm scared. Please reassure me." and I responded "Don't worry, everything's fine! It … [Read more...]

The Morning After

I was so, so wrong. I'm still numb. Disbelief.If there were anything that gave me even slim comfort on this awful day, it would be that all the polls got it just as wrong as I did. I don't feel that I did the wrong thing by relying on the best data we had. But it's clear that this was the worst polling failure in the history of politics. A lot of pollsters are going to have some serious explaining to do before I ever trust them again.I thought I knew my country. I was wrong. I thought … [Read more...]