The Non-religion and Secularity Research Network

I’ve occasionally complained about the lack of attention to secularity and nonbelief as an academic area of study.Fortunately, this appears to be changing. There are enough nonreligious people around to justify some social scientific interest. Enterprises such as The Non-religion and Secularity Research Network are up and running, and should produce some interesting stuff as the field matures. (I fully expect that there will be plenty of information coming out that will not flatter secular people as well as material that… Read more

Pro-choice and pro life

I consider myself both pro-choice and pro-life, because I support a woman’s right to choose and I oppose capital punishment. I’ve heard reasoned and nuanced arguments from both sides on these controversial issues, and I appreciate people who make it a point to listen to those with whom they disagree. What I don’t appreciate are pandering politicians like Texas Governor Rick Perry, who take simple positions with bible-based answers, while ignoring any evidence-based, opposing points of view. You would think… Read more

Representativeness

Last night, Mike Hout, creationist nuclear engineer from NASA, was on campus to explain why evolution was religion, not science. So I had to go and waste two hours of my life, naturally.The was nothing new about it. (I should stop hoping I will come across new and interesting forms of nonsense very often.) But the nature of the presentation made me think again that our difficulties with creationism cannot be overcome through better science education. The deeper problem with… Read more

Pluralism at Ground Zero

During my lifetime, our foreign policy has been defined by two wars: a cold one with Soviet-style Communism and a hot one with Islamic-style terrorism. Neither kind of war is good, but cold is better. We have no monuments, sites, or dates to honor American victims who died on our soil because of the Cold War. That’s why it was called “cold.” This is not in any way a justification for the horrible dictatorships in the Soviet Union. That regime… Read more

Harun Yahya bus ads

The Harun Yahya operation, responsible for much Islamic creationist literature, has apparently decided to strike a blow against infidel bus ads. They have put up ads on London buses themselves:  Read more

New Chick Tract

The latest of the same old same old. Read more

A religious and secular studies major

“They can send me to college, but they can’t make me think,” bragged a bumper sticker I recently spotted in my hometown. I can tell you from personal experience that this is sometimes true. It’s even more unfortunate that many college students want to take courses where they can get good grades without being critically challenged. In mathematics, my field of professorial expertise, lots of students hope to get by through rote memorization. This is not how mathematics works, and… Read more

Testing Supernatural Hypotheses

Are supernatural hypotheses testable? This was a question raised by Victor Reppert on his Dangerous Idea blog, and I responded a couple of weeks ago. The subsequent discussion got rather confused and confusing, and I would like to try to untangle things and see if I can get clearer on the issue here. Thanks much to interlocutor Richard Wein whose gentle but persistent probing of my remarks has pressed me to try to state things more precisely and cogently. What… Read more

Science is not democratic

Republican candidate Rick Perry is being compared to George W. Bush, our most recent president from Texas. Here is one place the comparison breaks down. Perry is not campaigning to be the “Education President,” as Bush did. Whatever its merits, Bush was president when the “No child left behind” act became law. Based on Perry’s recent comments, it looks like he is more interested in leaving every child behind. When a little boy in New Hampshire was prompted by his… Read more

Joel Marks essay

Take a look at Joel Mark’s short essay in the NYT; “Confessions of an Ex-Moralist.”It’s nice to see amoralist points of views expressed once in a while. Read more

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