Tennessee Church Kicks Out Longtime Members for Their Quiet Support of Gay Daughter’s Civil Rights

Police detective Kat Cooper (photo, right) became sort-of-famous in Tennessee earlier this month when she petitioned the city of Collegedale, a suburb of Chattanooga, to extend partner benefits to her wife, Krista (on left), whom she’d married in Maryland in May of this year.

“It should be of no importance to my employer if my lifelong commitment is made to a man or a woman — both are equal,” Cooper said [addressing the city commissioners]. “Small ripples can precipitate huge waves. In this case, a great opportunity lies in your hands.”

The commissioners voted on the matter on August 5, and the outcome, 4 votes to 1, was yes, fair’s fair, let’s do it. Case closed, right?

From the city’s perspective, yes. But for Ken Willis, the minister at Cooper’s family’s church, not so much.

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An Interview with Paul Provenza: Finding the Funny in Authentic Atheism

This is an article by Becky Garrison. It appears in the 3rd Quarter 2013 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/magazine to see a map of store locations, to subscribe, or to join American Atheists. Members receive free digital subscription.

Why in no god’s name did a comic emcee the Reason Rally? Has Atheism now de-evolved into a punch line that’s past its prime replete with watered down cocktails, stock sitcom characters, and right leaning puppetry? Paul Provenza riffs via telephone with Becky Garrison on the evolution of comedy, Atheism, and all that jazz as he points the way forward for those seeking authenticity and truth in a culture driven by Christianity and commerce.

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Texas Church Sets Up Shop Across the Street from an Elementary School and Offers ‘Free Cookies and Prayer’

This is a guest post by Joe Zamecki.

As I type this, the church next door to my house is focusing its attention on Katy Elementary School which is across the street from us. It looks like Orientation Day, so all of the new students and their parents are at the school, late in the day, and they’re all very busy, moving from one area to another.

The church is medium-sized, which in this town, Katy, Texas, means that the building is about the size of a high school gymnasium. It’s a Methodist church, and a somewhat active one.

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Alabama State Senator Files Unnecessary ‘Merry Christmas’ Bill

Remember when Texas Governor Rick Perry signed a law making it legal to say “Merry Christmas” in public schools — even though no one ever said it was illegal — and also allowing for religious holiday displays?

Now, Alabama State Senator Gerald Allen (R-What else?) is set to to pass a similar bill in his state:

Allen said he is bringing the bill to protect schools from litigation.

“I’m convinced that there is an undeniable secular progressive agenda to remove all religious freedoms from the public square and that includes our public schools,” Allen said.

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Why Are Atheists So Angry?

The video below, part of The Atheist Voice series, answers the question: Why are atheists so angry?

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...]


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