In Defense of “Old” Atheism

John Loftus says that I have gotten old and so I favor an old, outmoded atheism and I should get with the new, hip, aggressive, in-your-face, take-no-prisoners atheism:http://debunkingchristianity.blogspot.com/2016/04/keith-parsons-is-just-old-that-explains.htmlLoftus' Debunking Christianity site has an ad for foods that fight dementia. I guess that was meant for me! Actually, I am 63. Is Loftus that much younger? I guess he would say that he is younger in sprit and not bogged down in … [Read more...]

The “Religious Freedom” Scam

Okay, here is what I have decided to do: I will convert my home in Houston-area suburbia into a temple to Zeus. In the Houston area, developers are unburdened by zoning rules, so there should be no problem along those lines. Still, I can anticipate that some of my stodgier neighbors and the nosy types of the HOA will have some complaints. Proper worship of Zeus will require regular sacrifices of live animals. This will necessitate quite a bit of livestock in my yard, with a lot of mooing and b … [Read more...]

Really Religious Violence

A splinter group of the Pakistani Taliban targeted a crowd of Christian children celebrating Easter:http://www.cnn.com/2016/03/27/asia/pakistan-lahore-deadly-blast/In the comments section of my last post on religious violence we had a lively discussion about the causes of religious violence and to what extent they were genuinely religiously motivated. Such attacks as this one (which, alas, are not rare) plainly show the religious motivation of the hatred. The perpetrators promise more s … [Read more...]

Hope for a Brighter Future

A recent studv (based on surveys conducted between 1972 and 2014 that produced responses from over 58,000 Americans) shows that belief in God has declined significantly in recent decades.===============The findings show that from the early 1980s to 2014:• Those who identified their religion as “none” increased from 7 percent to 21 percent. • Those who never attend religious services doubled to 26 percent. • Those who say they never pray rose from 3 to 15 percent. • Those who say th … [Read more...]

Religious Violence: The Question that Will not go Away

Every time there is yet another terrorist attack by jihadists, you can count on some immediate responses: The media will devote obsessive attention, national leaders will condemn and decry, bigots will blame the innocent, and presidential candidates (some of whom are bigots) will issue calls to “get tough.” And scores of liberal pundits and academics will ascend soapboxes to reassure us that Islam is not the cause of these horrific events. Any suggestion that those who kill while shouting “Al … [Read more...]

Texas AG Hires Anti-Gay and anti-Church/State Separation Activist

Texas Attorney General (and indicted securities fraud suspect) Ken Paxton has hired fundamentalist activist Jeff Mateer as his top assistant:http://www.houstonchronicle.com/150years/article/Paxton-hire-draws-ire-for-fighting-gay-marriage-6925133.phpIn Texas it is just business as usual to hire zealots and ideologues and put them in positions where they are supposed to be working for the people, all the people (an not just the ones, like Betty Bowers, who are so close to Jesus that they s … [Read more...]

The Professor, the Abductee, and the Aliens

What do you get when you partner a chaired professor of religious studies at a prestigious university with a popular writer in order to study the paranormal? According to The Houston Chronicle (3/6/16), Jeffrey Kripal, who holds the J. Newton Rayzor Chair of Religious Studies at Rice University, has teamed with Whitley Strieber, author of such books as The Wolfen and … [Read more...]

Bird Sighting: The Greater Right-Winged Texas Loon

This story has already been noted on at least one other atheist site, but I have to run it here also. It looks like Mary Lou Bruner, a wacko who says that Barack Obama was a gay prostitute, is headed for the Texas State Board of Education:http://www.slate.com/blogs/schooled/2016/03/02/mary_lou_bruner_extremist_who_thinks_obama_was_a_prostitute_heads_to_runoff.htmlAs I have noted here (many times) before, Texas is Bizarro World. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality works … [Read more...]