A Few of the Problems with Bill Donohue’s New Book, The Catholic Advantage

The Catholic League’s Bill Donohue has a new book out today called The Catholic Advantage, all about how great it is to believe as he does.

It’s not enough, however, to promote Catholicism. Donohue spends a huge chunk of the book talking about how awful atheism is. In fact, here’s the bulk of the book in a nutshell: Donohue claims that atheists are more likely to have mental health problems, be depressed, and commit suicide. We’re also less charitable and happy than our religious counterparts.

He more or less ignores the fact that religious people have very strong built-in communities and social networks (not to mention ways to donate your time and money), all of which contribute to one’s well-being. Very few atheist communities have the numbers that churches do, though there have been more attempts in recent years to build these up. No doubt we have a long way to go, but there’s nothing inherently bad about atheism — unless you think a lack of false hope is a problem — and Donohue never bothers to explain why Catholicism (as opposed to any other belief system) makes any sense.

I’ll give you an example of the kind of argument Donohue makes. Right in the introduction, he claims that people like us are atheists because we have bad relationships with our father:

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Pakistan Arrests Hundreds of Parents for Not Vaccinating Their Children Against Polio

I want parents to vaccinate their children.

I’m all for blocking unvaccinated kids from attending public school.

But when it comes to pushing parents to vaccinate their children, this strikes me as going a *little* too far…:



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Man Who Killed Three Muslim Students in Chapel Hill Could Face Death Penalty

It was only a few weeks ago when 46-year-old Craig Stephen Hicks went to an apartment near the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and killed three MuslimsDeah Shaddy Barakat (23), his wife of just over a month Yusor Mohammad (21), and her sister Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha (19) — before turning himself in to the police.

We still don’t know if this was an anti-Muslim hate crime, as many want to claim, or a dispute over parking (as Hicks’ wife said), but prosecutors know what result they want to see:

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Westboro Baptist Church Wanted to Picket Leonard Nimoy’s Funeral… but They Couldn’t Find the Location

You’d think these people would’ve figured out by now to find the location of a funeral before saying they’re going to be there… but after Leonard Nimoy, the actor who played Mr. Spock on Star Trek, died a few days ago, they said they would be picketing his funeral.

That plan fell through, though, when they couldn’t find the location of the event:



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After County Votes to Put Up “In God We Trust” Sign, Atheist Petitions to Put Up “In Dissenters We Believe” Sign

For weeks now, I’ve been writing about how Clark County (Washington) officials have gone back and forth over a plan to put up an “In God We Trust” sign in city hall. A few days ago, they decided to vote in favor of the sign, much to the chagrin of church/state separation advocates.

George Thomas left last week’s meeting before the vote took place, but he has since written up a petition to put up a second sign on the wall (emphases his):

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