What Makes a Person an “Atheist” Parent?

Christine

I was going back through my feed reader lately, and came upon a post on the Friendly Atheist from December. In it the author, Kate Cohen, writes about her interest in how atheists are represented in TV shows and movies shown on TV. She focuses especially on the representation of atheist parents.She leads with this: I found one! I found one! I found an atheist mom on TV! She goes on to explain that she is talking about Doris Walker in Miracle on 34th Street. I've never seen Miracle on 34th … [Read more...]

Does Atheist Parenting “Work”?

baby-17369_1280

I recently came upon an interesting comment (screenname Angellius) on a scholarly post titled "Does Homeschooling Work." The post addressed whether homeschoolers with religious motivations are successful in producing religious children.You could put the question this way: A lot of atheist parents are highly concerned that God not be mentioned in school: No prayers, no overt professions of faith by teachers, no prayer meetings during school hours, etc. Is anybody asking, “Do atheist efforts … [Read more...]

Charlie Hebdo and Freedom of Speech

Charlie Hebdo

The world is abuzz with talk of this week's deadly terrorist attack on Charlie Hebdo, a French satirist newspaper. That anyone could be willing to kill someone else over cartoons---no matter how offensive they find them---is unthinkable to me. Both newspapers and private individuals should be able to be offensive without fearing for their lives. What happened this week at Charlie Hebdo is wrong, and tragic, and horrifying in the extreme.Supporting a person or organization's freedom of speech … [Read more...]

Where This Atheist Parent Is This Christmas

Nativity Set

Last year my in-laws gave us a really nice toy nativity set, for the kids. This year I got it out again, and it has been getting a lot of use.When I first had children after leaving my parents' conservative evangelical beliefs behind, I was afraid. Mainly, I was afraid that my children would be hurt by religion in the way I had. And so I tried to shield them from it, to keep it away from them. When relatives gave us a book about Noah's Ark, I changed the words and the story when reading it … [Read more...]

Whitesplaining Racial Disparities in STEM Fields

black_scientist

Today I came upon an article on Chris Stedman's Religious News Service blog, titled Instead of hating on social justice, atheists should tackle STEM segregation. The article was written by Sikivu Hutchinson, a black activist and author. At this point it’s a cliché that white “New Atheist” elites love to saber rattle against the inclusion of social justice in atheist organizing. Yet, when it comes to anti-racist social justice, even the “kinder, gentler” Humanist community often nods its head in … [Read more...]

How Not to Teach Children Critical Thinking

child

I found this series of comments on a post I wrote about atheist parenting a couple of weeks ago very interesting and thought provoking: Two Pi Man: [I]t's about allow[ing] other people to make their own choices and respecting their decisions if they make different ones. And for children, yes absolutely it's about passing on critical thinking skills so they can evaluate philosophies & religions for themselves. Teaching, for example, that "homeopathy is bad" as an article of faith, just … [Read more...]

We Prosecute People for Actions, Not Beliefs

sam_harris

About a month ago, a blog post by Terry Firma titled "The Dishonesty of Some of Sam Harris’ Foes (Who Clearly Know Better But Smear Him Anyway)" went up on the Friendly Atheist. In it, Terry explained that some of Harris's opponents had been tweeting a specific quote from one of Harris's books and labeling him a "genocidal fascist maniac." Here is the quote: “Some propositions are so dangerous that it may even be ethical to kill people for believing them.” According to Terry, Harris's opponen … [Read more...]


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