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Thanksgiving 2015: Tradition and Freethought

11/26/2015 07:22:00 AM

By Ben Franske, via Wikimedia CommonsOne of the things that has always drawn me to freethought, starting long before I knew what the meaning of freethought, is its encouragement questioning the things others seem to take for granted. I used to drive > read more

Racism, Nativism, and Xenophobia in the U.S.

11/24/2015 05:21:00 AM

A collage of Native Americans dressed in European attire. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Racism, nativism, and xenophobia did not start with the Trump for 2016 presidential campaign. In fact, these phenomena predate the colonization of what would eventuall > read more

Why I Write

11/22/2015 08:23:00 AM

Writing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)I started writing Atheist Revolution in 2005 for one reason: I was mad. I was not a secular activist hoping to change the world. I did not have anything particularly profound to say or any great ideas I thought would > read more

Activism When Others Are Part of the Problem

11/19/2015 05:04:00 AM

Raging Apathy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)I don't recall when I first heard someone accuse someone else of being "part of the problem," but my best guess is that occurred in the context of sexism or racism. It is an accusation I have witnessed many time > read more

Celebrate the Holidays with a Zombie Nativity

11/18/2015 05:17:00 AM

It is no secret that some atheists who were raised as Christians enjoy certain aspects of Christmas. Usually, it is the more secular parts of the holiday they enjoy, but some have retained a fondness for the Christian music or the pagan decorations c > read more

Accusations of Racism at Skepticon 8

11/17/2015 05:57:00 AM

Richard Webb, via Wikimedia CommonsThe latest controversy between skeptics and social justice warriors is an interesting one. We have accusations of racism made against a speaker at Skepticon 8, and we have a video record of everything this speaker s > read more

Atheism Seeming Somewhat Less Important

11/16/2015 05:46:00 AM

Whenever I take time away from blogging, as I did recently, I step away not just from writing blog posts but from reading others' blogs and most other online activities. This recent break was a good example. Aside from quickly checking Twitter period > read more

Advocating Against Regressive Beliefs

11/15/2015 07:57:00 AM

By Medineli from Wikimedia CommonsI don't know about you, but I sometimes find it difficult to put how I am feeling into words until someone else expresses it. It is almost like I need to hear someone else say it, feel it resonate, and then I can jus > read more

Murder in Paris

11/14/2015 09:25:00 AM

Paris (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Yesterday was a long, shitty day. I suppose that makes sense, as it was a fitting end to a long, shitty week. By the time I made it home, I was in no mood to do much of anything. I'd had maybe four hours of sleep the pr > read more

Starbucks: Laughing All the Way to the Bank

11/12/2015 05:08:00 AM

Most businesses advertise, especially when they are trying to grow or fend off competition. Advertising is not cheap, particularly the sort of advertising large companies find necessary to make an impact. Thus, it is easy to imagine that most compani > read more

Pretending to Believe in Service to the Greater Good

11/10/2015 05:06:00 AM

Bernie Sanders (I-VT) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)I am going to refer to Bernie Sanders in this post, but it really isn't about him or his chances of winning the Democratic Party's nomination. I am using him here to present an ethical question. If you a > read more

When Atheists Come to Town

11/08/2015 08:22:00 AM

By Hellohowareyoudoing from Wikimedia CommonsMemphis, Salt Lake City, Des Moines, Washington DC, Denver, New York City, and Austin. What do all of these U.S. cities have in common? They have all been devastated by brief explosions of violent crime, c > read more

Religious Believers and Homosexuality: Two Choices

11/05/2015 05:19:00 AM

Portal of the Church of Pilgrims, in Washington, DC, with a LGBT banner. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)If the particular strain of Christianity, Islam, or whatever other religion you prefer places you in opposition to LGBT persons, same-sex marriage, or t > read more

Lots of Cultural Critics on the Internet

11/04/2015 04:54:00 AM

By Julio Ruelas, via Wikimedia CommonsI have noticed that quite a few of the social justice warriors I encounter online include the label "cultural critic" in their online bios on the various social media platforms they use. Of course, they are not t > read more

Freethought as the Rejection of Tribalism

11/03/2015 04:51:00 AM

"Cables in Virtual Light" by Jeffrey Horvath - Flickr. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons. Freethought is a broad term that is bound to mean somewhat different things to different people. The definition that has always resonated with me i > read more

Thoughts on the CNBC Republican Debate

11/01/2015 07:42:00 AM

Ben Carson by Gage Skidmore 4, CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons I thought that the third Republican presidential debate was the best yet. How so? There was a bit more of a focus on policy, and it seemed like more candidates had good moments in this debate th > read more

Why Do I Like Horror Films?

10/31/2015 13:35:00 PM

After mentioning that I am a fan or horror flicks, a friend asked why I thought people liked such films. I said I wasn't sure but that I assumed that people liked them for all sorts of reasons. People are different and what individuals find appealing > read more

Halloween 2015

10/30/2015 05:12:00 AM

Halloween celebration decorations, New Orleans (Photo credit: Wikipedia)If I could celebrate only one holiday each year, it would be Halloween. I've felt that way for a long time. As a child under the age of 12, I enjoyed Halloween far more than any > read more

Who is the Least Worst of the Republican Candidates?

10/25/2015 10:21:00 AM

I'm not back yet for regular posting and probably won't be for awhile longer, but I couldn't resist sharing a brief and somewhat random thought. Of the Republican candidates still running for U.S. president in 2016, which would you say is the least w > read more

Taking Some Time Off

10/18/2015 09:40:00 AM

So when exactly is the "quiet October" I mentioned previously going to start? Right now!I have needed a bit of a break from the blogging grind for awhile. The fact that I'll have family in town visiting for the next week or so means that I'm not anti > read more

Clinton vs. Sanders: Round 1

10/17/2015 06:21:00 AM

Hillary Clinton in Hampton, NH (Photo credit: Wikipedia)I was disappointed by the first Democratic debate. Specifically, I was disappointed by the performances of both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. It was hard to be disappointed by the rest of > read more

Dealing With Bad Ideas: Problems With Suppressing Them

10/15/2015 05:18:00 AM

Anti-racist-rally-Sydney-2005-Dec-18 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)In my previous post on the subject of dealing with bad ideas, I left off with the question of whether we should seek to suppress the expression of bad ideas through the application of soci > read more

Are Conspiracy Theories Harmless Fun?

10/14/2015 05:13:00 AM

Anti-Obama protester at an Austin, Texas "Tea Party" protest on July 4, 2009 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)January 20, 2017. Remember that date. In fact, you might as well put it on your calendar. It is going to be one of those dates we in the U.S. look b > read more

Why Does God Allow Suffering?

10/13/2015 05:16:00 AM

Of all the questions many religious believers will confront at some point in their lives, this might be the most important and most challenging one. It is a question that requires us to define our terms at the outset if we are to have any hope of ans > read more

South Park: I Love the Irreverence

10/12/2015 05:44:00 AM

I've written previously about how much I enjoy South Park. I can certainly understand why some people hate it. We all have different preferences, and that may explain some of it. Then again, I suspect that at least some of those who hate South Park a > read more

Belief in Belief

10/11/2015 07:48:00 AM

Daniel Dennett, at the Second World Conference on the Future of Science, in Venice, 2006 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Daniel Dennett, author of Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon, has offered what I consider to be one of the most intrig > read more

Criticizing Islam vs. Anti-Muslim Bigotry

10/08/2015 05:13:00 AM

There is nothing inherent in atheism that prevents an atheist from engaging in bigotry. Not believing in gods provides little in the way of protection against bigotry. We are certainly capable of bigotry. We are capable of bigotry not just against re > read more

Gendered Violence and Toxic Masculinity

10/07/2015 05:17:00 AM

This is a chart showing trends in violent crime rates by gender in the U.S. from 1973-2003. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)One of the narratives I have been seeing on Twitter in the aftermath of the recent mass shooting in Oregon (and there are many narrat > read more

The Real Losers of the 2016 Presidential Debates

10/06/2015 05:04:00 AM

When I tune into a presidential debate, I do so because I am interested in learning about the various candidates. I want to see how they present themselves, and I'd like to hear something about their position on the relevant issues.In many debates, t > read more

Why Are We Surprised the Pope Met With Kim Davis?

10/04/2015 08:03:00 AM

I understand that many atheists do not particularly care for Kim Davis, and the reasons for this make sense to me. While I oppose the efforts to publicly shame her online, I do not approve of her behavior. I also understand that many atheists are no > read more

A Quiet October

10/03/2015 13:57:00 PM

Lon Chaney as seen in The Phantom of the Opera, 1925. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Things are going to be unusually quiet around here this October. So quiet it will be downright spooky! No, I won't be locking myself in a room and watching as many horror > read more

Far More to Political Orientation Than Right-Left

10/01/2015 05:23:00 AM

"Political chart" by Traced by User:Stannered, via Wikimedia Commons. I mentioned in a recent post that I grew up with negative attitudes toward libertarianism because I did not adequately understand it. I'm still learning about it, and I've discover > read more

Jesus and Charles Manson

09/30/2015 06:55:00 AM

Charles Manson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)If a large group of people were raised from birth to believe a certain set of stories, it is reasonable to expect that many of them would continue to believe these stories into their adolescent and early adult > read more

We Are In Desperate Need of Improved Media Literacy

09/29/2015 05:16:00 AM

Newspaper "gone to the Web." (Photo credit: Wikipedia)There was a topic that came up briefly during SPJ Airplay that I found quite interesting even though it had little to do with GamerGate, gaming, feminism, or even journalistic ethics. It came up s > read more

Welcome to the End Times!

09/28/2015 06:51:00 AM

There was no "super blood moon" for me last night. It was obviously out there somewhere, but I did not get to see any trace of it due to the clouds. I am well aware that there are photos of it all over the Internet, but these hold little interest for > read more

Why Doesn't God Answer My Prayers?

09/27/2015 07:51:00 AM

The question in the title of this post is a damn good one. It is one which many religious believers have asked themselves. If you are here now because you have been asking it and are seeking answers, you are in good company.Growing up as a Christian, > read more

Secular Faith and Dogma

09/24/2015 05:13:00 AM

Faith by Karl Bitters (1910) IAS WI000332 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Most atheists speak out against religious faith and dogma. This should come as no surprise, as we have plenty of good reasons for doing so. And yet, it is important to realize that fa > read more

The Best Presidential Candidates

09/23/2015 05:28:00 AM

Party to watch the 2008 vice-presidential candidates' debate at On the Boards, Seattle, Washington. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)As I watched the first two Republican presidential debates this year, I found myself feeling disappointed that these candidat > read more

Reducing Anti-Atheist Bigotry: Coming Out is Only the Beginning

09/22/2015 05:16:00 AM

Bigotry directed at atheists remains a significant problem. How do we reduce it? There are many ideas out there, but one of the simplest and most appealing involves providing religious believers with more opportunities to interact with people who ide > read more

Who Decides U.S. Presidential Elections?

09/20/2015 07:35:00 AM

William Jennings Bryan, Democratic party presidential candidate, standing on stage next to American flag (Photo credit: Wikipedia)I would guess - and this is a very rough guess indeed - that somewhere around 45% of voters in the U.S. are what we migh > read more

No More Guilty Pleasures

09/17/2015 05:28:00 AM

In a post about the recent TERF war dividing Freethought Blogs (FtB) and leading to the departure of at least one of their bloggers, Joe (Canadian Atheist) wrote something on an unrelated topic that stuck in my head and that I find far more interesti > read more

One Good Thing About the Atheist Rift

09/16/2015 05:47:00 AM

Bryce Canyon National Park at sunrise (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Maybe I'm just having an uncharacteristic moment of optimism where I am trying to look on the bright side of an unpleasant situation that does not have anything to do with our fascination > read more

Liberal Criticism of Islam

09/14/2015 18:35:00 PM

I don't post many videos here because I'm not much of a YouTube fan and prefer to spend my time elsewhere. I think this one is worth watching through. This is Sarah Haider's presentation from the American Humanist Association's 2015 conference in Den > read more

Where Will Rick Perry's Supporters Go?

09/13/2015 08:00:00 AM

Things are about to get more interesting on the Republican side of the 2016 presidential race. Well, I guess that's not really true. Thanks to Donald Trump, things have been interesting on the Republican side of the presidential race for some time. S > read more

Slayer: Still Repentless

09/11/2015 06:05:00 AM

Before and iTunes existed, we bought CDs and records at...wait for it...record stores. The release of a new album by a big band was an event, in part because there was almost no chance any of us ordinary folks could hear it before the offi > read more

Reducing Polarization, Tribalism, and Conflict

09/09/2015 05:47:00 AM

Culture of peace1 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Take a look at the world around you, and ask yourself this simple question: Would you like to see more polarization, tribalism, and conflict or less? If you compare the world as it is today with the world yo > read more

Atheism in the U.S.: Is It Really That Bad?

09/08/2015 05:30:00 AM

One of the more common questions I see atheists who live outside the U.S. asking those of us who live in the U.S. is, "Is it really that bad there?" They ask this question for many different reasons. Some are planning a trip to the U.S. and are tryin > read more

Salman Rushdie on Our Perpetual State of Outrage

09/07/2015 14:44:00 PM

> read more

Opposing SJW Behavior Without Adopting It

09/06/2015 09:20:00 AM

I have been a frequent critic of the behavior of those who can accurately be characterized as social justice warriors (SJWs) for some time. I have explained that I believe their behavior undermines much of the social justice agenda they claim to supp > read more

Writing a Short Post Was Surprisingly Fun

09/05/2015 13:26:00 PM

Screenshot of the short film "Milgram". (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Last November, I wrote a short post called "What Happened to the Short Posts?" in which I lamented the fact that I rarely seem to write short posts anymore like I used to in the early d > read more

Shaming Kim Davis

09/04/2015 16:03:00 PM

I have not had a chance to express my thoughts on the subject of Kim Davis (the Kentucky clerk who was jailed after defying a court order that she issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples) or the manner in which many of the atheists I follow on Tw > read more

The Ridicule and Mockery of Religious Belief

09/03/2015 05:23:00 AM

One of the longest running controversies among atheists concerns the use of ridicule and mockery as a way of responding to public expressions of religious belief. Some argue that mockery and ridicule should have no place because they elicit resistanc > read more

When Religious Belief Limits Our Effectiveness

09/02/2015 04:44:00 AM

"Why do you damned atheists care so much what we Christians believe? Why is it any concern of yours? Why do you continue to obsess about religion at all if you don't believe it?"I finally got around to watching The Day After Tomorrow. For those not f > read more

Cultural Libertarians

09/01/2015 05:18:00 AM

There's no question that labels can be problematic. If we rely too heavily on them, they can take on too much meaning. We can end up reacting to the label rather than the person or persons we are using it to describe. It is easy to see that labels ca > read more

Defending Allies and Avoiding Hypocrisy

08/30/2015 09:55:00 AM

Ayaan Hirsi Ali (Photo credit: Wikipedia)When someone we like and possibly even respect as a worthwhile contributor to secular activism is shunned, boycotted, demonized, and/or publicly shamed, we tend to come to this person's defense (here's an exam > read more

Ignoring #GamerGate Was a Mistake

08/27/2015 05:18:00 AM

I really missed the boat on #GamerGate. I made the choice not to comment on it because I did not feel like I knew enough to say anything remotely useful. Not being a gamer or someone familiar with gaming media, I figured I was the last person who sho > read more

Offending for the Sake of Offending

08/26/2015 05:30:00 AM

The building housing the Danish embassy in Damascus, Syria burning after being stormed by demonstrators. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)I support the free expression of ideas. This includes ideas with which I disagree, and it certainly includes ideas which > read more

Trolling Jesus

08/25/2015 05:33:00 AM

Gay couple for wedding cake. Picture by Stefano Bolognini. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)You are all familiar with the concept of Internet trolls. There are many different types of trolls, each of which operates in somewhat different ways and may have som > read more

Elected Officials Promoting Religion

08/24/2015 05:17:00 AM

If you have been following the political news out of the U.S., you are undoubtedly aware that some are taking offense over the use of the term "anchor baby" by Donald Trump, Jeb Bush, and others on the political right. Not surprisingly, others are ar > read more

How to Talk About Feminism on Social Media

08/21/2015 05:21:00 AM

> read more

Are Christians More Moral Than Everyone Else?

08/19/2015 04:55:00 AM

Dessins de Martin van Maele. Illustration de La Grande Danse macabre des vifs, 1905. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)In the U.S., Christianity is frequently equated with morality. Christians are assumed to be more moral than the rest of us simply because of > read more

What You Believe Is Sometimes Wrong

08/18/2015 05:06:00 AM

"But that's what I believe" is used far too often by religious believers as a way of shutting down conversations. And it is a very effective way to shut down conversations because many of us are so damn reluctant to offend others or hurt their feelin > read more

Churches and Other Public Nuisances

08/16/2015 09:00:00 AM

I have seen quite a few stories over the years involving people filing noise complaints against one of their local Christian churches. Most of the complaints involve unreasonably loud church bells on Sunday mornings. I can easily empathize with the p > read more

Liberals for Donald Trump

08/14/2015 06:00:00 AM

If the United States did not have the electoral college and the winners of presidential elections were determined by which candidate received the majority of the popular vote regardless of which states the votes came from, the system would make far m > read more

Don't You Fear Death?

08/13/2015 05:19:00 AM

Here's a recent email I received from a Christian posing a question I'd like to answer:Hello, My names J and I'm a Christian, I'm not here to preach to you lol, I just had a question, Don't you ever think about the day you die? Does it not scare you? > read more

Social Justice Warrior: A Brief Definition

08/12/2015 06:06:00 AM

The term social justice warrior is not easy to define in a concise way. Since it describes people who behave in certain characteristic ways (e.g., eagerly participating in online shaming, outrage, dogpiling, vigilantism) and is often confused with te > read more

Expanding on the Subject of Intelligent Christians

08/11/2015 05:04:00 AM

Right about the when I'm not feeling particularly inspired to write, I received an email from a reader about a recent post. The timing could not have been better. And since the author of this email requested a response, I thought I'd provide it here. > read more

What If Donald Trump is Neither Sexist Nor Racist?

08/09/2015 09:20:00 AM

This photo depicts Donald Trump's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Some may choose to interpret what I am about to write as a defense of Donald Trump or as me trying to make excuses for some of his recent comments. You are > read more

I'll Miss the Daily Show

08/08/2015 13:16:00 PM

President Barack Obama tapes an interview for the Daily Show with Jon Stewart at the Harman Center for the Arts in Washington, D.C., October 27, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)As you have undoubtedly heard, > read more

Atheism and the Rejection of Gods

08/06/2015 05:41:00 AM

Dead Gods symbol for Atheist pride (Photo credit: Wikipedia)It is possible for someone to believe in a particular god (i.e., to believe that a particular god exists) and stubbornly refuse to worship that particular god. It could even be accurate to s > read more

In Condemnation of Public Shaming

08/05/2015 05:48:00 AM

The risk of writing an extremely snarky or sarcastic post is that those who are not regular readers cannot be expected to recognize it as such. When it comes to certain topics, the real thing is almost impossible to distinguish from parody, satire, s > read more

The Appealing Sort of Christian

08/04/2015 05:35:00 AM

When one reads atheist blogs written by authors who live in the U.S., one can count on hearing quite a bit about a certain type of Christian. One hears mostly about the evangelical fundamentalist Christian who hates LGBT persons and atheists, clings > read more

Complaining About Clickbait and Outrage Media

08/02/2015 07:35:00 AM

We love to complain about websites that seem to be about little more than clickbait and the latest outrage. We worry that they fuel polarization and tribalism, contribute to incivility, diminish the chances of meaningful political compromise, promote > read more

Blog Tips: Get a Custom Domain

07/31/2015 07:52:00 AM

This is icon for social networking website. This is part of Open Icon Library's webpage icon package. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)If you'd like to see more traffic coming to your blog, you need to get a custom domain, especially if you are using Blogger > read more

Christian Wants to See You Fry Like Sausage

07/30/2015 06:34:00 AM

Coppo di Marcovaldo, via Wikimedia CommonsThere are many intelligent, thoughtful, kind, and compassionate Christians out there. It is good to remember that. They are our friends and family, our neighbors, our co-workers, and so on. Our lives are rich > read more

Would You Rather Be Happy and Wrong or Unhappy and Right?

07/29/2015 05:22:00 AM

happiness (Photo credit: Wikipedia)In a recent comment I left at Bitchspot, I suggested that many religious believers would probably prefer to be "happy and stupid" than "sad and smart" in the sense that they are willing to believe things that are pr > read more

Political Questions Ahead of the 2016 U.S. Election

07/28/2015 06:48:00 AM

By M. E. J. Newman, via Wikimedia CommonsI've seen several people on the various social media networks in which I participate asking all sorts of hypothetical questions about the 2016 U.S. presidential election. "If the election was held today and al > read more

Outrage Culture: Punishing Offenders Like Hulk Hogan

07/26/2015 08:34:00 AM

By GabboT, via Wikimedia CommonsIt appears that we have yet another excuse to discuss outrage culture, so let's do it.Suppose you were to learn of an incident in which a waitress at a popular chain restaurant called a customer a racial slur that man > read more

Openness to New Ideas and Experiences

07/24/2015 05:35:00 AM

Spider at Web (Photo credit: Wikipedia)I've mentioned before that I have an irrational fear of spiders going back to my childhood. The intensity of this particular fear is much milder these days than it used to be. Years ago, I found it difficult eve > read more

Proactive Activism: Taking on Religious Privilege

07/22/2015 05:24:00 AM

By Jorge Barrios, via Wikimedia CommonsIf public declarations of faith grant one access to benefits one considers desirable and to which one would not otherwise have access, we would have to expect to witness many such declarations. Viewed this way, > read more

Growing Up Atheist in the U.S.

07/21/2015 05:48:00 AM

I came of age during the Reagan era. The Cold War did not seem all that cold in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Many buildings were equipped with fallout shelters, and nuclear war seemed almost inevitable. I remember doing the duck-and-cover drills a > read more

Instead of Demonizing Trump...

07/20/2015 06:45:00 AM

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has been in the news again due to comments he made about Sen. John McCain. The comments, characterized as a "a new low in American politics" by Rick Perry, quickly led almost every other Republican candi > read more

Toxic People

07/19/2015 08:00:00 AM

What is a toxic person? I'm sure we all have different ideas for the sort of person to whom that label might be fairly applied. After all, it is a highly subjective label that is tough to define without relying heavily on our own feelings. When I thi > read more

Generational Differences in Social Media Use

07/15/2015 07:03:00 AM

Graph of social media activities (Photo credit: Wikipedia)I wanted to expand a bit on a response to a comment I left on a recent post. The comment expressed a sentiment I have often had: Some people take social media way too seriously, so much so tha > read more

Secular Activism: Doing a Better Job With Action Alerts

07/14/2015 05:50:00 AM

I have repeatedly encouraged people to join national secular organizations as a way of supporting their work and becoming more involved in secular activism. And yet, I have had more than a few complaints with the national secular organizations and ho > read more

Taking a Joke

07/13/2015 08:30:00 AM

Laugh (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Godless Mom writes an ongoing series of "Atheist Life Hacks" posts about a variety of topics. What I like about them is that, despite the title, they have much broader applicability than just atheists. In fact, many don > read more

Being a Christian Today

07/09/2015 04:49:00 AM

I know what it is like to be indoctrinated into Christianity from an early age, experience doubts about what I had been taught, and gradually emerge on the other side of a long struggle as an atheist. The fact that I went through this many years ago > read more

Freethought in the Face of Totalitarianism

07/08/2015 05:55:00 AM

The first time I read George Orwell's 1984, I was in junior high. It was the first book I had read up to that point in my life where, upon reaching the final page, I went back to the first page to read it again without delay. I cannot pretend that I > read more

If I Didn't Care What Anybody Thought of Me

07/07/2015 05:04:00 AM

The other night while I was doing the sort of chores that tend to make my mind wander, I found myself asking what I would do if I was absolutely indifferent to what other people thought of me in my daily life offline. How would my life be different?I > read more

Christian Terrorist Freed

07/05/2015 08:57:00 AM

Remember the story of Robert Rankin Doggart? He was the former candidate for Congress in Tennessee's 4th District who admitted "plotting the annihilation of a Muslim village in New York" and was looking at up to five years in prison after he pleading > read more

Being Exceptional: Thoughts on the 4th of July

07/04/2015 05:47:00 AM

Instead of clutching our flags and insisting - despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary - that the U.S. is "#1," I wonder what we might be able to accomplish if we decided to pursue the goal of becoming #1 at something. We don't have the best he > read more

Confederate Flags and Free Expression

07/01/2015 05:15:00 AM

Picture of the Confederate flag flying behind the Confederate Soldier Monument on the Statehouse Grounds in Columbia, SC. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)There seems to be a great deal of confusion around the Confederate flag issue. I have seen more than a > read more

Changing Our Minds

06/29/2015 07:06:00 AM

Habits of Minds (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Many skeptics, atheists, and/or freethinkers pride themselves on their willingness to change their mind on the basis of reason, evidence, or other new information. This should be a source of pride and should b > read more

Obergefell as a Tipping Point

06/27/2015 08:30:00 AM

By Daderot (Own work), via Wikimedia CommonsThe news out of the Supreme Court this week (i.e., Obergefell v. Hodges) was fantastic and long overdue. Congratulations and thanks to every person who has been working to bring about marriage equality in t > read more

Parent Sues Indiana Teacher for Segregating Atheist 2nd-Grader

06/26/2015 07:01:00 AM

Balanza de la Justicia (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Suppose that you are the parent of a 2nd-grader attending public school. Your child and his or her classmates are playing on the playground shortly before lunch. One of the children asks your child if h > read more

Time For 'In God We Trust' To Go

06/25/2015 05:34:00 AM

When you walk into a building owned and operated by your city, county, state, or federal government, you generally do so for a reason. Unless you work there or are just sightseeing, you have almost certainly come to this building for a specific purpo > read more

Giving Advice to Teens Wanting to Tell Their Parents of Their Atheism

06/23/2015 05:26:00 AM

Spend any time on the atheism subreddit at Reddit, and you will see countless pleas for help from teenage atheists seeking advice for how to "come out" to their parents. In nearly all of them, the teen describes how desperately he or she wants to tel > read more

A Replacement Flag for South Carolina

06/22/2015 14:22:00 PM

Calls for South Carolina to take down the Confederate flag flying at the state capitol have intensified so much that Gov. Nikki Haley and Sen. Lindsey Graham have both flip-flopped (Republicanspeak for changing one's mind) and are now calling for its > read more

Racism, Guns, Flags, and Angry Young White Men

06/21/2015 10:55:00 AM

The "Confederate Flag", a rectangular variant of the Battle Flag. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)The recent shooting in Charleston appears to have been about racism, at least in terms of alleged shooter's likely motive and choice of target. Access to guns > read more

Explaining Trump

06/19/2015 12:31:00 PM

Donald Trump speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on February 10, 2011. (Photo by Gage Skidmore via Wikipedia)There are many things about the U.S. that I've never been able to explain to observers living in other countries who have inquired. Evolution > read more

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