Ask JT: Has anybody questioned the constitutionality of the Pledge of Allegiance?

Alex asks: Has anyone thought of questioning the constitutionality of the Pledge of Allegiance? The "one nation, under God" part is obviously a violation of the First Amendment. I know why that phrase was added in the 1950s (not that it was constitutional then), but surely someone has thought of trying to change it more recently. Thanks for the question, Alex.I contacted Monica Miller, Senior Counsel at the American Humanist Association's Appignani Humanist Legal Center, for some examples … [Read More...]

AP reports that Gene Wilder has died.

Well this sucks:BREAKING: Gene Wilder, star of ‘Willy Wonka’ and Mel Brooks comedies, is dead at 83, his family says. — AP Entertainment (@APEntertainment) August 29, 2016Gene Wilder starred in the original Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory. He was also a favorite of Mel Brooks playing Jim, the Waco Kid in Blazing Saddles and Dr. Frankenstein in Young Frakenstein.Who can forget, "Little bastard shot me in the ass"?Wilder was also likely an atheist.His movies wer … [Read More...]

Preacher and Trump adviser: if we don’t elect Trump god will judge America.

Uh oh! Once again we're threatened with god's wrath if we don't subdue our common sense to make a foolish decision: Last month, pastor Ramiro Peña spoke with televangelist Jim Bakker about his role as an adviser to Donald Trump, warning that if Trump isn’t elected president in November, God will jud … [Read More...]

Maternal mortality rates decline around the globe, but up in the US — double in Texas.

While maternal deaths around the world are decreasing, in the United States, a developed nation, they're actually going up: The good news is that maternal mortality rates are declining worldwide. The bad news? The situation for women in the United States is a glaring exception. And in Texas, where … [Read More...]

GAMING: TSM takes League of Legends summer championship. Doublelift turns around last team fight.

I wrote a year ago about how CLG came up with an incredible run to take its first North American championship behind their star bottom lane of Doublelift (ADC) and Aphromoo (Support). Both players came up big against NA powerhouse, TSM, such as this team fight from Game 2 of last night’s ch … [Read More...]

MORNING HAPPINESS: Parrot duet and more cooking.

Good morning, all!  Ok, first, your antidote to all the unhappiness the world is going to throw at us today:Now for even more! I've been learning how to cook since the wife started med school and, frankly, it's a struggle. Right now I'm working on sushi and last night I came up with some … [Read More...]

The rest of what’s going on: Catholic hospitals, Spongebob Squarepants, and convictions for assaulting gay people.

Here's all the stuff that didn't make the blog today.The majority of Americans who have left religion claim science as the reason.  This is why religion is having a difficult time in the information age.Trump's campaign CEO, Steve Bannon, is registered to vote at a vacant address in Florida, … [Read More...]

Pastor who said Orlando victims “got what they deserved” arrested for child molestation.

And if you look to your right you'll see a Christian hypocrite, a species bountiful in Georgia: A Georgia pastor and and conservative political activist was arrested Friday morning on charges of child molestation and aggravated child molestation.Ken Adkins, 56, of St. Simons Island turned h … [Read More...]

Ask JT: Why don’t churches do more to stop child molestation?

Kevin asks: Why don't the churches do more to stop child molestation? And when it does happen, why do they try to cover it up, and then make the child feel like it was their fault? While it's not a very difficult matter to point out where somebody's beliefs are false, it's a much harder (and far … [Read More...]

Thanks to American Atheists’ lawsuit, dishonest organizers of National Baptist convention won’t get taxpayer money.

The National Baptist Convention is coming back to Kansas City.  All would've been smooth, but they asked the city for $65,000 of taxpayer money to support their convention.  American Atheists filed a lawsuit, the city decided that one way or another the convention wasn't getting that money and d … [Read More...]

MORNING HAPPINESS: I am the night!

Top of the morning, everybody.  :)In this picture, note the shadow: I am the night .. … [Read More...]

Pennsylvania House of Representatives set to give Americans United a lot of the state’s money.

Five Pennsylvanians are suing the state over being prohibited from giving invocations before House sessions: American Atheists joined with Americans United for Separation of Church and State in filing a federal lawsuit today challenging a policy prohibiting atheists from offering invocations to … [Read More...]

Texas preacher found guilty of molesting girls in his congregation.

A Texas preacher has been found guilty of sexually molesting many of the girls in his congregation: Dell Ivan Godkin, 48, was found guilty of sexually abusing one victim beginning when she was 13-years-old, and continuing until she was 17, by telling her God approved of what they were doing.“He … [Read More...]

State Department Ambassador on Religious Freedom pens piece calling to abolish all blasphemy laws.

From David Saperstein's bio with the State Department: David N. Saperstein is the Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom. He was confirmed by the Senate on December 12, 2014, and was sworn in and assumed his duties on January 6, 2015. His position is what gives this, a blog post … [Read More...]