Newspaper Editor Says He Won’t Publish Letters from Climate Change Deniers Because They’re Factually Inaccurate

The letters-to-the-editor page of any newspaper tends to be filled with kooks of all stripes, but the Los Angeles Times refuses to print letters with demonstrable lies, as one of its editors explained over the weekend:

Regular readers of The Times’ Opinion pages will know that, among the few letters published over the last week that have blamed the Democrats for the government shutdown (a preponderance faulted House Republicans), none made the argument about Congress exempting itself from Obamacare.

Why? Simply put, this objection to the president’s healthcare law is based on a falsehood, and letters that have an untrue basis (for example, ones that say there’s no sign humans have caused climate change) do not get printed.

They won’t print things that aren’t true?! As you would expect, conservative bloggers weren’t taking the news so well:

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Bryan Fischer Supports Corporal Punishment to Fix Our Public School

On Christian Right leader Bryan Fischer‘s radio show yesterday, he spent plenty of time explaining how spanking kids was a good idea (“the bottom is just designed by God for that. It’s designed to receive the ‘board of education’”)…

Which was just the prelude to him telling his public school teacher listeners — oh, I’m sure there are tons — that he empathized with them. He knows how hard it is to maintain order in the classroom. He knows the struggles we have to deal with. Which is why he supports bringing back corporal punishment:

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Malcolm Gladwell Opens Up About His Beliefs: I’m ‘Rediscovering My Own Faith Again’

Sarah Pulliam Bailey of Religion News Service interviewed Malcolm Gladwell, author of All Those Popular Books People Buy at the Airport including his latest hit David and Goliath, about his faith.

It turns out there’s a religious side to Gladwell we’ve never heard much about:

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How Religious Can Atheists Be?

The video below, part of The Atheist Voice series, answers the question: How religious can atheists be?:

We’d love to hear your thoughts on the project — more videos will be posted soon — and we’d also appreciate your suggestions as to which questions we ought to tackle next! [Read more...]

Massachusetts State Senator William Brownsberger, a Candidate for Congress, Outs Himself as a Humanist

After Senator John Kerry became Secretary of State, Rep. Ed Markey ran for and won his Senate seat. That left an opening in the House, which will soon be filled in a special election this December.

The first stop to that seat is the primary, which will take place next Tuesday.

The Secular Coalition for Massachusetts and Secular Coalition for America have released a scorecard grading the candidates for the 5th Congressional District.

The overall grades aren’t all that newsworthy… one awful Republican candidate, a handful of good Democratic candidates, a smattering of candidates on both sides for whom we don’t have enough information about to see a grade.

But then we get one incredible response from William Brownsberger, a Democratic State Senator:

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