Daylight Atheism: Anniversary #3

Oh yes - it's that time again. As difficult as it is for me to believe, today officially makes it three years I've been writing for Daylight Atheism.This past year has been the most eventful one yet. I finished writing my first book; met a fellow freethinker in an unlikely setting; was attacked by a sitting member of the U.S. Senate (still a proud moment); and more. As well, I continue to be encouraged by the thriving, friendly community here. It's the commenters that make a site what it is, … [Read more...]

The Renaissance of Atheist Evangelism

In one of my first posts on Daylight Atheism, I asked whether atheists should evangelize. My conclusion was that, while it would be foolish to go door-to-door on Sunday or pass out fliers on street corners, we can and should appear in forums like TV, radio and print media to press our case before the public.In the two years since I wrote that post, I'm glad to see that many prominent atheist groups have come to feel the same way. In the U.S., there's the Freedom from Religion … [Read more...]

From the Mailbag: Weekend Kookery Edition

The last time I did a post like this, it was to share some of the more uplifting and inspiring e-mails I received. This one is headed in a different direction. Here, for your reading pleasure and amusement, enjoy this selection of kookery culled from e-mails I've gotten, as well as the occasional preaching comment I've rejected from Daylight Atheism.First up, there's this from "wayofthegoldenlion", which starts off as standard creationist drivel but builds up steam as it goes, until it … [Read more...]

Who Wants to Live Forever?

Last month's post "On Cryonics" outlined why I'm skeptical of that transhumanist doctrine. In today's post, I want to discuss more directly the goal which advocates of cryonics hope to attain - the achievement of immortality through technology that gives us the ability to halt or reverse the aging process.In this case, my objection is not one of feasibility. I think it's entirely possible that we'll figure out how to do this eventually. (We already know of species, such as lobsters or giant … [Read more...]

Full Faith and Credit

Why don't we already have gay marriage in all of America?I mean this as a simple question of law, not a matter of fundamental rights or justice. The reason I ask is because we already have legally recognized gay marriage in Massachusetts and Connecticut, and because Article IV of the U.S. Constitution contains the following clause, commonly known as the Full Faith and Credit Clause:Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of … [Read more...]

Answering Lee Strobel's Questions for Atheists

Friendly Atheist has posted the third part of a dialogue with Christian apologist Lee Strobel. In it, Strobel poses questions that he thinks would be the most effective at planting seeds of faith in an atheist's mind. In this post, I'll answer those questions. I've written on some of these issues at greater length in the past, and I'll also provide links to those essays where appropriate.Historian Gary Habermas: "Utilizing each of the historical facts conceded by virtually all contemporary … [Read more...]

The Soft Landing

Although it's much too early to look forward to a world without religion, one thing we can be confident of is that the numbers and influence of atheists will continue to grow in the near future. Census figures over the last few decades have consistently shown the rise of the nonbelievers in the educated and industrialized nations of the First World - even in America, despite its high religiosity as compared to its cultural neighbors. We can expect this trend to continue, to the point where it's … [Read more...]

What We're Up Against

This past week, the Times ran a story about the extent of the gains made by the reconstituted Taliban, not just in Afghanistan or in the semi-autonomous tribal regions on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, but well within Pakistan itself:Using a portable radio transmitter, a local Taliban leader, Shah Doran, on most nights outlines newly proscribed "un-Islamic" activities in Swat, like selling DVDs, watching cable television, singing and dancing, criticizing the Taliban, shaving beards and … [Read more...]

The Catholic Church Welcomes a Holocaust Denier

I knew the Catholics were having trouble finding enough people to be clergy, but I didn't think things had gotten this bad (HT: Pam's House Blend):I believe that the historical evidence — the historical evidence — is hugely against six million Jews having been deliberately gassed in gas chambers as a deliberate policy of Adolph Hitler... I believe there were no gas chambers.Those are some choice words from Richard Williamson, one of four bishops excommunicated 20 years ago after being app … [Read more...]

Ambassadors for Atheism

In the world of Philip Pullman's fantasy series His Dark Materials, each human being is accompanied everywhere by their daemon, an intelligent animal-shaped spirit that is the outward manifestation of their soul. When Pullman's heroine, Lyra, meets a boy who's been severed from his daemon by a cruel experiment, her reaction is one of disgust and horror:Her first impulse was to turn and run, or to be sick. A human being with no daemon was like someone without a face, or with their ribs laid … [Read more...]