How many exceptions does it take before we discard the lazy theory altogether?
Last Friday, 28-year-old former Mobile, Alabama high school math teacher Alicia Gray was sentenced to five years of probation (after serving several months in prison) after being convicted of sleeping with one of her (allegedly) 14-year-old students:
As a condition of the probation, Gray will no longer be allowed to be employed with minors, and was required to surrender her teaching certificate to the Alabama Department of Education at once.
The former math teacher at Mary G. Montgomery [High School] surrendered to the Mobile County Sheriff’s Office on Feb. 25, 2013, and was charged with second-degree sodomy, second-degree sexual abuse and being a school employee who has had sexual contact with a student younger than 19. It was alleged that her victim was 14 years old at the time of the incident.
I’m sure there will be a lot of discussion about the light sentence and the double-standard at work here (would the sentence have been the same if it were a male teacher and a female student?), but what really stands out is her apology.
The video below, part of The Atheist Voice series, answers the question: Is there a connection Between religion and ethics?
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!
Tennessee Newspaper Op-Ed Piece Says Sexual Liberation Leads to ‘Abortion, Broken Homes, and Men’s Contempt’
The Kingsport Times-News (Tennessee) has published some indefensible opinion pieces in the past. There was one defending the Boy Scouts of America’s separate-but-equal theory of allowing gay scouts but not gay scout leaders. Then, there was the one by Mark Atkins claiming homosexuality is a disorder.
And now, Atkins is back to argue against consensual pre-marital sex because… well, you’ll see:
It’s no surprise that organized atheism — conferences, Meetup groups, lectures — tends to attract people who aren’t exactly living in poverty. You have to have money to purchase tickets for a conference, meet people at a restaurant or bar (and pay for the food and drinks), or travel to hear a lecture. Campus groups may not charge a membership fee, but they serve those who have the ability to pay for college in the first place. Even writing a blog like this one isn’t really possible without either getting paid for it or having another source of income and free time. (Admittedly, some of the costs I’m talking about are, in large part, required for those sponsoring groups just to break even, but that doesn’t make it any more accessible for those without cash.)
That’s not to say atheists don’t care about the poor, but let’s face it: it’s a lot easier to be religious if you’re poor. We can joke about tithes all we want, but churches don’t charge entry fees to walk through their doors and many of them have the infrastructure necessary to help people who are hungry or homeless.
In a piece for AlterNet, Alex Gabriel suggests a number of sensible ways atheists can reach out to people who may not have a lot of money — because why atheist gatherings shouldn’t be geared only toward the well-off.