A Couple of Problems with FFRF’s Statement About the North Carolina Shooting

The Freedom From Religion Foundation released a statement this afternoon in response to last night’s tragic shooting of three Muslims by an atheist — which was over a parking dispute, as far as the news reports say, and not over their theological differences, though you wouldn’t know that based on how it’s being reported.

But there are a couple of aspects of FFRF’s press release that bother me and I wanted to explain them here.

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Resistance to “In God We Trust” Display Leads Clark County (Washington) Officials to Reject It

Just days after city council members in Oregon shot down a proposal to put up an “In God We Trust” sign, their neighbors up north have done the same. In Clark County, Washington, the crowd was overwhelmingly against the religious gesture and the elected officials followed suit: After hearing about two hours of public testimony [Read More…]

Three Muslim Students Were Killed in a Tragic Attack Carried Out by an Atheist

Last night, apparently in response to a dispute over parking spaces, 46-year-old Craig Stephen Hicks went to an apartment near the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and killed three MuslimsDeah Shaddy Barakat (23), his wife Yusor Mohammad (21), and her sister Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha (19) — before turning himself in to the police.

Needless to say, whatever this fight was over, these students did absolutely nothing to deserve this fate.

As more information is coming out about Hicks, it seems obvious that he was an atheist. An anti-theist, to be more specific. His Facebook page is full of images and Likes that many of us have shared on social media.

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Creationist Group: To Doubt the Existence of Unicorns in the Bible “is to Demean God’s Word”

There are some versions of the Bible, like the King James, that mention unicorns. Many Christians — possibly fearing that the inclusion of unicorns might make a book that has a scheming serpent, magical fruit of knowledge, and a talking ass seem positively silly — will argue that this is just a mistranslation. Indeed, other translations like the New American Standard Bible and even the New King James Version refer to a “wild ox” instead of the “unicorn.”

As a kid, I really liked that the KJV mentioned unicorns, because I liked unicorns. When my Mom pointed out that this was probably a mistranslation, I entertained the hope that it was not. If the Bible really meant to say unicorns, I reasoned at the time, they had to be real, because the Bible could not be wrong.

Well, it turns out my childhood self wasn’t alone in that thinking. Answers in Genesis has an article up by Dr. Elizabeth Mitchell that addresses the same pressing issue with pretty much the same line of reasoning. The title asks, “Unicorns in the Bible?” — but the question is quickly laid to rest by the byline: “To think of the biblical unicorn as a fantasy animal is to demean God’s Word, which is true in every detail.”

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After a Muhammad Image Derailed His First Book, American Atheists’ Dave Silverman Gets a Second Chance

In 2013, American Atheists President David Silverman announced that he would be writing a book called I, Atheist. But a few months later, that book was off the table. What happened? On Facebook, Silverman explained that there had been a disagreement with Pitchstone Publishing: “We parted ways amicable over a smiley face, labeled ‘Muhammad of Islam’, which I refused to remove.”

Well, a different version of that book is finally seeing the light of day. The newly-titled Fighting God: An Atheist Manifesto for a Religious World (Thomas Dunne Books) is slated for a December release — just in time for Christmas.

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