Veterans Rally to Defend City’s Hydraulic Cross, Claiming They’re in the Majority Faith and That’s All That Matters

Last month, I posted about a giant hydraulic cross that goes up several times a year atop Dewey Hill in Grand Haven, Michigan:

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Friendly Atheist Podcast Episode 26: Steve Wells, Author of the Skeptics Annotated Bible and Strange Flesh

Our latest podcast guest is Steve Wells, creator of the Skeptics Annotated Bible (online and in print).

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Atheist Groups Are Not Distributing “X-Rated” Pamphlets to Students, No Matter What Breitbart Tells You

I’ve seen a number of articles on conservative websites over the past few days claiming, in the case of Breitbart, “Atheist Group To Distribute Pamphlets in Schools of Cartoon Bible Sexually Assaulting Woman.” It stems from an article on

Since those sites won’t bother to do any research, since none of this is news, let me help you out.

The story is old. Really old.

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Malaysian Muslims Wring Hands Over Day of Touching Furry Friends, Wondering If It’s an Insult to Islam

When a Malaysian man, Syed Azmi Alhabshi, was repeatedly asked why he insisted on organizing a touch-a-dog day in his predominantly Muslim country, where Islam is the state religion, he made no bones about it: To dispel negative stigma surrounding canines, he said.

But as dogs are the second-most-reviled animal in Islam, right after pigs, lots of his fellow citizens took the initiative as an intolerable provocation. Zurairi AR, a fearless humanist and skeptic, wrote an entertaining piece about the flap in the Malay Mail Online, under the Dawkins-referencing headline “The Dog Delusion.”

[C]onservatives have since accused Syed Azmi and the organisers of deliberately provoking the Malay-Muslim community with the event, which they say has no place in Muslim-majority Malaysia.

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After Alaska City Assembly Creates Controversy with Invocation Policy, They Vote 5-2 Against Government Prayers

Earlier this month, the Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly in Alaska decided to approve an ordinance allowing invocation prayers at their meetings (though it still needed to survive a final vote). While that’s happened all over the country, what made this ordinance stand out was that the prayers would be coordinated by the Ketchikan Ministerial Association (a Christian group) and they would be asked to reach out to local clergy, shutting out most non-Christian groups and almost certainly excluding non-religious ones.

Assembly member Glen Thompson (below) said most of those other groups would be welcome. Most.

I don’t have a problem with having an inclusive denominations, be they Hindu, Islam, Bahai faith, Christian, what have you. I will draw the line on Satanists or atheists.

He later retracted that statement.

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