Weekly Link Roundup

If I had the time, I'd write a whole post about each of these. As it is, you can probably guess what I would say:• There are atheists in the military!• And in high schools!• And for why this matters, see this post on Friendly Atheist, about a study finding that anti-atheist prejudice goes down as atheists become more numerous and visible.• I wrote a post a few months ago asking about atheist apps for the Android platform. I'm happy to point out that a developer has … [Read more...]

Atheist Action Items

• We've all been following the news about the massive earthquake and tsunami that's devastated Japan, and I won't waste your time rehashing the details. Help on an international scale is urgently needed, and the Foundation Beyond Belief has stepped in and is raising funds for the Japanese Red Cross. They've already collected almost $10,000, but that's just a drop in the bucket compared to what's needed. Visit their ChipIn page and contribute if you can.• On another note, my good … [Read more...]

Atheism Is Breaking Out All Over

Right around the time I received James A. Haught's editorial "Fading Faith", I was working on a similar post of my own. It was motivated by the brutal murder of Salman Taseer and the other signs that religious eliminationism is growing throughout the world, which drove me to wonder if there's any reason left to hope. Although recent events argue persuasively that the liberal spirit is alive and well, I think there's still room for this post as well: evidence that atheism is breaking out all … [Read more...]

Exploring the Gender Disparity on Daylight Atheism

As part of my fifth anniversary post, I included a survey where I asked readers to list their gender and their age, mainly just to satisfy my own curiosity. The results of the age poll, to my pleased surprise, formed a very neat bell curve (I have more computer-savvy older readers than I had guessed!).This wasn't the case with the gender survey, however. I was expecting there to be a gender disparity, and there was, but it was much larger than even I had anticipated. With the poll now closed, … [Read more...]

Help Bring Freethought to Prisoners

The United States of America is the prison capital of the world, incarcerating far more people than any other nation (including China, which has over four times our population and is a repressive dictatorship). And most atheists already know that Christian proselytizing is rampant in prisons, with programs that both skirt the Constitution and blatantly trespass on it.Given these facts, it makes sense for the atheist movement to care about what happens behind prison walls. Although atheists are … [Read more...]

On Taking Offense, and the Easiness Thereof

I wanted to point out this comment from an ongoing discussion, because it's such a perfect example of the kind of Christian privilege that American believers take for granted:Well, I guess you atheists are more easily offended than me. I do not see how a statue of the Ten Commandments makes anyone a second-class citizen.It's certainly easy, isn't it, for a Christian to proclaim that he wouldn't be offended by government-sponsored denigration of his beliefs, because he's never … [Read more...]

Encouraging Diversity in Atheism

I wrote last month about the importance of making non-white atheists feel welcome. I intend to continue banging that drum, and now I again have occasion to do so, thanks to this article from Religion News Service, "Atheists' Diversity Woes Have No Black-and-White Answers".This article complements the last one I discussed. Alom Shaha's essay was about being a person of color and an atheist, looking at the community from the inside. This one is more about looking in from the outside, how the … [Read more...]

Making Non-White Atheists Feel Welcome

I was reading this outstanding essay by Alom Shaha, an atheist and ex-Muslim of Bangladeshi descent, who describes what it's like to come out as a nonbeliever in a tightly-knit, intensely religious community. But as he makes clear, the social and cultural pressure on people in his situation isn't just a matter of happenstance; it formed as a defensive reaction against a wider society that was bitterly prejudiced:My family was one of a large wave of Bangladeshi families who emigrated to the … [Read more...]

This Holiday Season, Consider Atheism!

I was happy to read that this week that atheist groups are launching a new ad blitz, with ads extolling the virtues of atheism on billboards, buses, trains and print media. Significantly, atheist ads are also hitting the airwaves for the first time ever - thanks to a $150,000 donation from the Stiefel Freethought Foundation, which is underwriting a TV ad campaign by the American Humanist Association.And the very best part of the AHA campaign is that the ads aren't just saying that … [Read more...]

Snapshots from the 2010 FFRF Convention

Welcome to the convention!Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Barbara Lawton addresses the convention on the first night.The FFRF also gave an Emperor Has No Clothes award to Rep. Pete Stark, the only openly nontheist U.S. congressperson, who accepted in a pretaped message.Linda Greenhouse discusses the Supreme Court.Dan Barker presents the Emperor Has No Clothes award to Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who signed copies of … [Read more...]