The 10 Most Popular Posts on This Site: 2013 Edition

Here’s the yearly countdown of the most popular posts on this site:



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At the Last Second, Supreme Court Blocks Affordable Care Act Contraception Mandate

When you consider that the Supreme Court has six Catholics on the bench, maybe this news isn’t too surprising: Justice Sonia Sotomayor, just before heading to Times Square to help drop the ball and ring in the new year, blocked the part of the Affordable Care Act that would have mandated certain religiously-affiliated organizations provide comprehensive health care to their employees.

Her ruling means that, for now, certain religiously-affiliated businesses will not have to provide health insurance that includes birth control to their workers. The government has until Friday to respond.

Here’s a little more information about what’s going on:

[This post is still being updated]

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After Making Offensive Statements About Atheists, New York State Senator Issues the Worst Apology You’ll Ever See

For weeks now, New York State Senator Andrew Lanza has been complaining about the American Atheists ad in Times Square.

He said the digital billboard, images of which are below, was “religious persecution of the kind that similarly lead to the Holocaust.”

Recently, he altered his original press release to remove some of the most offensive statement along with his call for the IRS to revoke American Atheists’ non-profit status.

Meanwhile, the bit about the Holocaust remained in place.

If you go to Lanza’s site now, there’s a completely new press release where the old one used to be.

So let’s go through some of these new revisions, shall we…?

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Religious Liberty Group Compares Flying Spaghetti Monster Display in Wisconsin State Capitol to honoring the KKK

The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty is clearly run by a bunch of people who failed the Analogy section of the old SATs.

Case in point: The legal defense group just bestowed its annual “Ebenezer Award” (awarded to the “most ridiculous affront to Christmas or Hanukkah celebrations”) to the state of Wisconsin for allowing non-Christian displays in their state capitol building.

Because you can’t have Christmas without Christ. (Or Jews, I guess, just to give off the vibe of not being complete assholes.)

They’re referring to the fact that the state capitol has a Flying Spaghetti Monster display (along with other atheist signs) right alongside a Nativity scene.

Here’s what the Becket people write:

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The Downside of TED Talks as ‘Secular Megachurches’

Bouncing off some of the issues about seculars and the need (or lack thereof) for religion and church-like ritual I and others have been posting about over the past couple of days, I tweeted this yesterday:


Ha ha ha, right? If you’ve read more than a handful of my work, you’ve already seen me go on and on about how I half-jokingly consider Apple my “religion” and The Steve (peace be upon him) my prophet. Ha ha ha. Old news.

But when I made that tweet, I had no idea that this piece by Benjamin Bratton in The Guardian would go up hours later (thereby confirming my psychic powers). The subject? How TED talks have become, as Bratton describes them, “middlebrow megachurch infotainment.”

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