I Am Not A Freethinker (and neither are you)

“Know Thyself” — ancient Greek proverb. I have never cared for the word “freethinker” even though I myself have used it on occasion to denote a skeptic/atheist/agnostic.  When I use the term, I do so in order to avoid monotony; I am trying to swap out the words I use to describe a demographic to which I now belong.  But I do not like the term for one simple reason:  There’s no such thing as a “freethinker” if what you… Read more

An Atheist’s Take on Sex and Monogamy

Some people seem to think that the most important thing about you is what you do with your genitals.  I disagree.  On the other hand (heh), it’s not inconsequential, either.  Hang with me for a bit here and I’ll try to explain what I mean. Like most men, I’ve given sex a great deal of thought.  When I was a Christian, I was told two memorable things about that:  1)  That’s bad, somehow, and 2) Women don’t think about sex… Read more

Evangelicals and Closet Fundamentalism

You will often hear me say that the main difference between a fundamentalist and an evangelical is that a fundamentalist wears his beliefs on his sleeve while the evangelical keeps them under his hat. I have not been able to identify any substantive doctrinal differences between the two—they believe the same things. Their differences are a matter of style, not of substance. The fundamentalist doesn’t discuss ideas, he preaches them. He doesn’t converse, he recites. But the evangelical usually feels… Read more

Letters to My Daughters #2: “Just Be Yourselves”

I think what concerns me most about you girls learning I no longer believe in God is that I don’t want you to feel uncomfortable around me in any way.  I love the closeness of our relationship and I would be heartbroken if anything took that away from us.  I am convinced this issue does not have to do that because, while this discovery may be new for you, it is not new for me at all.  I haven’t been… Read more

Free Rein to Proselytize

Hemant Mehta over at Friendly Atheist has his eye on Mississippi because we’re such a poster child for religious privilege.  Few states push evangelical faith on their residents through official government institutions quite like we do (Oklahoma sometimes may be a close second), as evidenced by a new law that went into effect just a few days ago.  In effect this law says that schools must provide a public forum within which students can freely express their religious views at… Read more

Letters to My Daughters #1: “We’re Not Bad People”

Nothing in this world matters more to me than you, my precious girls.  Anyone who knows me well knows that I’d do anything for you girls.  You are a delight to me, and I am happiest when I am with you.  I’m so proud of the beautiful young women you are becoming, and I look forward to seeing what direction each of your lives takes as you grow up.  I also hope you will always feel comfortable and open towards… Read more

It’s All About the Cape

For all the things we gain from the wonders of the world wide web, we lose a few valuable things as well. In our search for a larger virtual community, many of us have surrounded ourselves with like-minded people so thoroughly that we find ourselves inside echo chambers, whether we realize it or not. In this day of heightened online rhetoric and routinely insulting dialogue with faceless strangers, we should probably forgive ourselves for wanting to limit the number of… Read more

Man of Steal

Superman was always my favorite superhero, so of course I could not pass up seeing the latest theatrical adaptation on the big screen.  The whole cinematic experience remains one of my favorite pastimes for many reasons, not least of which is the music.  A film score can make or break a movie (just try watching Star Wars without the trumpeted anthems of John Williams and you’ll see just how important the music can be) and I have to say I… Read more

Atheists Need Community

There comes a point in any movement when people begin to ask, “So what do we do now?” After the initial splash, after the resulting push back from the powers that be, after the 15 minutes of fame, and after some ground has finally been gained, those within a movement must begin to ask themselves, “What’s next?  After we make a place for ourselves in the world, what in the world are we for?”  We atheists in particular must ask ourselves… Read more

If the Shoe Fits

Wanna hear something funny?  Well, it’s funny to me, anyway… Last month when I was doing the Interview an Atheist at Church thing, at one point in the interview I said, “There are people out there who believe the stuff you do that’s good for the world is wasted unless it’s done in the right belief system.”  At that moment I was thinking about how many evangelical Christians criticize Humanists for trying to “do good” in the world because true… Read more

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