Advice Columnist Nails Response to Mother Upset Over Her Son’s Desire to Have a Non-Religious Wedding Ceremony

Since the suggestions traditional advice columnists dole out about atheists are often cringe-worthy, it’s always nice to highlight someone who nailed it.

Robin DesCamp received a letter from a woman whose son and future daughter-in-law were planning a wedding. Just one problem:



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Hamza Yusuf, Islamic Scholar in U.S., Claims That Western Pornography Drives Young Muslims to Jihad

I’ve seen my share of porn, and it’s never made me want to blow someone up. Not everyone is so lucky, says Hamza Yusuf, née Mark Hanson, an Islamic scholar who is the co-founder of an Islamic liberal-arts college in Berkeley, California, an institution whose curriculum includes “rigorous training in traditional Islamic disciplines.”

During a recent panel discussion at Georgetown University, Yusuf declared that young Muslims become drawn to jihad because they feel morally contaminated after watching too much Western porn. Obviously, then, acts of terror are their path to purification.

Yusuf offered a theory in which young men “become deeply defiled” by [their] pornography habits and blame the West for providing the corrupting influences. They turn to jihad for religious purification and redemption.



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Male Shame, the Root of Female Shame

This is an article by Darrel Ray. It appears in the current issue of American Atheist magazine. American Atheist magazine is available at Barnes & Noble and Book World bookstores in the U.S. and at Chapters/Indigo bookstores in Canada. Go to Atheists.org to subscribe or to join American Atheists. Members receive free digital subscription. It’s also available from iTunes.

For thousands of years, religions have used shame as a method of control. It is easy to see how shame is detrimental to females in patriarchal religions, but it has grave consequences for males as well. We hear a good deal today about the shaming of women and girls, but we don’t hear as much about male shame. Male shame is all around us and starts at infancy. Its message is strong and consistent: males must act a certain way or they are not really male. Males must always be seen as distinctly different and superior to females. From male shame comes a wide range of behaviors designed to oppress women and ensure male dominance. Understanding the interplay and dynamics of shame makes it possible to explain much of the misogynistic behavior we see in the religious and non-religious alike.

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An Online Porn Site Said I Couldn’t Buy Adult Material Because I Lived in a “Sexually Conservative” Area

Last night, acting on a tip, I visited the adult website Adam & Eve to buy some DVDs. When they asked for my address, I gave them a particular zip code from Tennessee. And then I couldn’t go any further with my purchase, because this was on the next screen: At this time, we are [Read More...]

Conservative Congress Looks to Further Reward States That Teach Abstinence-Only Sex Ed

Facing a(nother) looming budget showdown, conservatives in Congress wasted no time in steering negotiations toward conservative goals, like so-called “pro-life policy” such as focusing on abortion coverage and promoting abstinence-only sex ed.

Nevermind that abstinence-only ed is a monumental failure; nevermind that abstinence educators often mislead and degrade students. It’s part of the Christian conservative social agenda, and legislators are (predictably) pursuing it.



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