Why Bill Nye Was Wrong When He Dismissed Philosophy

A few weeks ago, Big Think posted a video with Bill Nye in which he talked about the relevance (or lack thereof) of philosophy. The backlash was fierce, to say the least.

NyeBigThink


[Read more…]

After Calling God “Evil” and “Utterly Monstrous” in Interview, Stephen Fry Nominated for Award

In February of 2015, comedian Stephen Fry sat down for an interview with host Gay Byrne for the Irish state RTÉ One’s The Meaning of Life.

It produced one of the most memorable exchanges about religion in recent memory:

StephenFryGodAnswer


[Read more…]

A Once-Devout Catholic Woman Says She’s “Disillusioned” by the Church’s Anti-Contraception Stance

The Supreme Court will hear arguments today in the case of Zubik v. Burwell — another ridiculous challenge to the Affordable Care Act.

CePQuCYWAAAL387

In a compelling piece for the Washington Post, teacher Sonia Guizar writes about how she used to be a devout Catholic who shunned any form of birth control. But after having her first child, she knew she couldn’t afford another one. She needed contraception. Without coverage from her Catholic workplace, though, that was out of the question.

She soon became pregnant with her second child. (So much for “natural family planning.”)

Guizar says the Church’s opposition to sensible family planning is pushing her away from the faith — no kidding — and today’s Supreme Court case just confirms her feelings:

[Read more…]

North Carolina District’s New Pledge Policy May Include Discussing Coercion and the First Amendment

When it comes to the Pledge of Allegiance, the policy at many school districts in the country amounts to: “Say it.” Kids who don’t want to participate for religious or personal reasons are often ostracized or punished.

shutterstock_91713296

That’s why the new policy being considered by the Wake County School Board in North Carolina is such a welcome relief. Not only are they stressing the fact that it’s optional, they’re using it as an opportunity to talk about coercion and the First Amendment:

[Read more…]

New Survey Finds the Religiously Unaffiliated Have a Wider Gender Gap Than Any Faith Group

One of the problems with surveys about religion is that atheists tend to be lumped in with a lot of other people who believe in God but have no religious affiliation. We’re all the “Nones.” We’re all unaffiliated. That might be a helpful designation in certain contexts, but there are so many differences between atheists and believers within that category that combining our numbers means overlooking a lot of interesting data.

A new report by the Pew Research Center dealing with religion and gender actually teased out some data for atheists. You won’t be surprised to hear this, but at least in the U.S., there’s more than a 2:1 margin of male to female atheists:

AtheistWomen


[Read more…]