Atheists’ Lawsuit Against Churches That Deprived Public Schools of $5,600,000 Finally Results in Partial Recovery
Back in August, atheist activist Mitch Kahle, along with his partner Holly Huber, filed a lawsuit against a group of churches in Hawaii.
The problem was not that the five churches rented out worship space at public schools — that’s perfectly legal — but that there was evidence that the churches had not paid fair rental price for about six years, thereby shortchanging those schools up to $5,600,000. (One of the schools that was owed more than $3,000,000 could’ve used that money after it had a roof collapse.)
It’s also worth noting that this was a qui tam lawsuit, meaning that Kahle and Huber didn’t have to have standing or prove they were personally affected by the churches’ deception in order to bring about the lawsuit. They (along with their lawyer) did the research, they were helping the government recover lost fees, and a victory meant that they stood to gain anywhere from 15-30% of the money recovered.
The Daily Beast met up with naturalist and broadcast narrator Sir David Attenborough, 87, and discovered that these days, he turns a tad ornery when the subject turns to superstitious, anti-science stubbornness:
Attenborough has made a career of resisting controversy, often describing himself as “a reporter” with no views of his own. … Once criticized by campaigners for his reticence to address contentious issues, [he] is no longer willing to speak in hushed tones.
Sitting opposite the kangaroo enclosure at London Zoo, he told The Daily Beast he had lost patience with the “ignorance” of creationists, polluters, and climate change deniers. “To simply say that you must accept unquestioningly what you learned at your mother’s knee is not the act of an intelligent person,” he said.
Creation myths are among the things that can exasperate him:
A lot of kids are taught morals at Sunday School or through watered-down biblical stories, but Matthew Brackney thinks there’s a way to elucidate a lot of those values without religion. It’s kind of like Aesop’s stories, but with a non-religious theme. He’s calling it “The Freethinker’s Book of Fables“: