The Sunday Assembly Comes to New York

This past weekend, the Sunday Assembly, an atheist congregation that got its start in the U.K., came to New York City as the culmination of a swing through the United States. I was in attendance, and I'll be happy to tell you all about it!I have to admit that when I first got there, I didn't have high expectations. The venue was a Manhattan dive bar called Tobacco Road, tucked away on a grimy, dingy side street next to the Port Authority that was an obstacle course of … [Read more...]

Ron Lindsay Apologizes: A Small Step in the Right Direction

When I wrote about the CFI board's disappointing non-statement addressing the blowup at Women in Secularism 2, I thought that would be the last thing I'd have to say about this. That statement gave no hint that any further action was being contemplated, so I assumed the board's plan was to hunker down and wait for this all to go away.To my surprise, there's been a new development: Ron Lindsay has apologized for his remarks that touched off the controversy. His statement is short enough for … [Read more...]

CFI Accidentally a Controversy

AtheismPlus

So, I was at a restaurant yesterday for Father's Day dinner and had a terrible experience. Everyone else at my table was served what they ordered, but the kitchen got my order very badly wrong. I'd ordered a soup and salad, but they brought me a plate of wilted, slimy brown lettuce and a bowl of what appeared to be dirty gray dishwater. I complained heatedly to the waiter, who fetched the manager in short order."Excuse me," I said to him, "but this food you've served me is inedible. Can you … [Read more...]

Women in Secularism Attendees’ Letter to the CFI Board

The following letter was originally written by Miri Mogilevsky of Freethought Blogs. As I'm a signatory, I'm reprinting it below. This was sent to the CFI Board of Directors as they prepare to meet this week to discuss the controversy surrounding Dr. Ron Lindsay's opening remarks at the Women in Secularism conference. If you have something to say about this, the CFI Board of Directors can be reached via the Corporate Secretary, Tom Flynn, at tflynn@centerforinquiry.net. If you'd like to, feel … [Read more...]

Women in Secularism Speakers’ Letter to CFI Board

In the aftermath of the unfortunate introduction at Women in Secularism 2, a group of speakers have written and signed a joint letter to the Center for Inquiry's board of directors, detailing their objections to Ron Lindsay's offensive remarks and what they're asking the board to do.I highly recommend reading the full text of the letter, which was posted by Stephanie Zvan and also by Greta Christina, two of the speakers that signed it. I expect it will appear on other speakers' blogs as … [Read more...]

Some Sadly Necessary Remarks on the #wiscfi Intro

Hey everyone - I'm checking in from the final day of the Women in Secularism 2 convention in Washington, D.C. I'm going to write a full wrap-up later (and I enjoyed it enormously, I want to be very clear about that), but there's something that cast a cloud over this weekend, and I want to clear the air about it first.Although every other speaker this weekend was a woman, as you'd expect at a conference about women in secularism, Ron Lindsay, the president and CEO of the Center for Inquiry, … [Read more...]

Speaking Out Against Hate Directed at Women

AtheismPlus

This post originally appeared on Skepchick. Since the Women in Secularism 2 conference is this weekend, it seemed appropriate to repost it.There's one thing that just about every atheist activist agrees on, which is that religion has always treated women as inferior. Whether it's demonizing them as evil temptresses who brought sin into the world, demanding their silence and subordination, or treating them as male property with no desires of their own, every major church has a litany of … [Read more...]

It’s SSA Week – Ask Me Anything!

SSAWeek2013

It's that time again: the time of the year where we come together to support the Secular Student Alliance, one of the most important groups helping to foster community among young atheists and to energize, connect and train the next generation of secular activists. The SSA helps organize, represent and defend clubs for atheist and agnostic students on campuses across the country (plus I hear they sponsor some pretty cool speakers), and now has almost 50 high school affiliates and almost 400 … [Read more...]

An Open Letter to the Secular Community: My Thoughts

Earlier this year, the heads of major atheist and secular organizations met to discuss the future direction of the movement, including the role that feminism should play. Now those groups have published a joint open letter to the secular community from the proceeds of their meeting, calling for greater civility and more constructive dialog in our online interactions.There are some parts of this that I take issue with, and I'll get to those, but first let me say what I like about it, because … [Read more...]

In Support of Feminism and Diversity: Atheists Speak Out

AtheismPlus

In January, I created a petition calling on atheists to show their support for feminism and diversity. That petition, with more than 2,000 signatures, was delivered to the leaders of the largest atheist and secular organizations at the end of January.The petition also attracted over 400 comments from people who wanted to further explain why they were signing. Most of these comments were excellent, and I want them to be seen more widely. In this post, I'll continue spotlighting some of my … [Read more...]


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