Friendly Atheist Podcast Episode 76: Jocelyn Floyd, Attorney with the Thomas More Society

Our latest podcast guest is Jocelyn Floyd, an attorney working with the Thomas More Society, a non-profit group that usually defends religious liberty cases.

As a frame of reference, they’re usually on the other side of the Freedom From Religion Foundation on the issues. She also serves as a board member for the Northern Illinois chapter of the Christian Legal Society.

I spoke with Floyd about Nativity scenes on government property, the need for anonymity in lawsuits, and Kim Davis.

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A Student Who Stopped Being a Mormon While Attending BYU Explains What Happened Next

A few months ago, we had a guest post on this site about the problem with Brigham Young University’s honor code.

Here’s what it boils down to: Mormons get cheaper tuition at BYU than non-Mormons. (It’s a private school. They can do that.) If you’re a non-Mormon who changes your faith while you attend school there, no big deal. But if you’re a Mormon who changes your faith, you could be expelled, evicted, fired from any university job, etc. It’s really harsh. And it sends the message that Mormons who stop believing while at BYU are better off lying than openly discussing their thoughts.

Now, a student who’s been affected by that policy has written about what happened after he told a school official about his de-conversion. It’s heartbreaking. The Student Review (an independent publication) has the story:

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Students Will Keep Saying Lord’s Prayer at Alberta School Despite Mother’s Plea to Stop the Practice

In Alberta, Canada, where public schools are legally allowed to recite Christian prayers during the school day, one mother is trying to push back against the practice.

When Jennye Blain‘s non-religious daughter began attending Busby Elementary School this fall, she asked the school to change its outdated ways. Officials discussed the situation, before voting 30-3 in favor of keeping the prayer in place. Because if God isn’t publicly praised by students who are pressured into it, it’ll hurt His ego.

Blain doesn’t get why they can’t make this simple accommodation:

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Zimbabwe “Prophet” Shepherd Bushiri “Walks on Air” in the Worst Magic Trick Ever

Shepherd Bushiri is a self-proclaimed Christian “prophet” who has supernatural powers… that a child could debunk.

His most recent trick — the one that’s making headlines — involves him floating in air for a few seconds.

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Mother Teresa’s Charity Ends Adoptions in India So Kids Won’t Have Divorced or Gay Parents

Christopher Hitchens would have had a field day with this…

The Missionaries of Charity, the group founded by Mother Teresa, will no longer be handling adoptions in India. The decision has nothing to do with financial troubles, though.

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