The Petty Vindictiveness of Blasphemy Laws

The Times of India reports that an 11-year-old girl, Rimsha Masih, has been arrested for blasphemy, for alleged Koran desecration in Pakistan. In case you were one of the last people on Earth who was under the illusion that these blasphemy laws were somehow about protecting religious feelings or preventing religiously inspired violence, this should [Read More...]

Alexander Aan: Our Plea to the President, My Plea to You

I’ll begin with the lede: There is a critical petition launched by the Center for Inquiry on behalf of Alexander Aan, the jailed Indonesian atheist (I promise this won’t be the only thing I write about here, but this is very important). We want the White House to speak out on his behalf, but I [Read More...]

A Letter of Thanks from Alexander Aan

Indonesian atheist Alexander Aan, jailed for stating his atheism, has heard us. Last week, I wrote about the significance of Alexander’s plight, making the case for putting serious energy toward his struggle both for the sake of atheism-writ-large and for Alexander himself. It moves me to no end to know that he knows we’re rooting [Read More...]

Alexander Aan: Both a Symbol and a Real Person in Need

Many of the bigger secular and civil rights organizations have been making noise about the case of Alexander Aan, the 30-something civil servant of West Sumatra, Indonesia, who was beaten by an angry mob and then arrested and convicted… all for stating his atheism on Facebook. At the Center for Inquiry (where I work), Aan’s [Read More...]


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