Marriage equality and religious freedom are compatible

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
March 27, 2013

A brief response to Erick Erickson, who claims that marriage equality is incompatible with religious freedom. 

 

 

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Boy Sherlock

Investigative Briefs with Joe Nickell
March 27, 2013

Already a detective at eight, when I was about ten years old (about 1954), I became Sherlock Holmes.

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The Cruel and the Ridiculous

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 27, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

The Nine heard arguments about gay marriage and California's Prop 8 yesterday, which weirdly included some speculation as to the fertility of the late senator Strom Thurmond.  

Crowds, protesters, and activists swarmed the capital, and CFI was there, too. CFI policy analyst Ed Beck got into a back and forth with a minister, and was photographed by the Washington Post, with Michael De Dora behind him. ("My face is melting," Ed told me.) Also, Business Insider featured a tweet from Michael on the most notable signage at the rally. His is the second one down.

CFI-Indiana's Reba Boyd Wooden (a media darling, let's be honest) appears on the Indianapolis ABC affiliate's news coverage of the case, and she guesses that the Roberts Court may not want to be remembered as being "on the wrong side of history."

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Some Witches Use Their Power in a Positive Way

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 26, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

Happy Let's-Argue-About-Gay-Marriage-At-The-Supreme-Court Day! Yesterday, CFI sent out a message telling folks about our efforts to support marriage equality in this week's cases involving Prop 8 and DOMA, along with allies like the American Humanist Association.

Our own Michael De Dora trumpets the defeat of voucher amendments to the Senate's budget last week. 

CFI-Indiana's Reba Boyd Wooden posts her acclaimed testimony against vouchers to the state legislature. 

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Opposing School Vouchers in Indiana

Picture by Susan Lantzer.

Freethought from the Heartland with Reba Boyd Wooden
March 25, 2013

On Tuesday, March 19, members of CFI-Indiana joined Indiana Coalition for Public Education and other organizations for a rally against school vouchers at the Indiana State House.  The following day, I sat through nearly 4 hours of testimony supporting the bill to expand the already problematic voucher program in Indiana before the opposition got its turn to testify.  Each speaker (from both sides) was only allowed 5 minutes to state his/her case.  When I got my turn, I first felt the need to correct a person who had missused a word earlier making his statement the opposite of what he meant and then got to give less than half of my prepared speech.  However, my former student on the Senate Education committee was a model student and took my printed speech, left the room, copied and stapled copies for each member of the committee, and passed them out.  Here is my prepared speech: (I borrowed extensively from CFI's position paper on school vouchers. )  

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The Secular Agenda

It’s Only Natural with John Shook
March 25, 2013

Today’s great debates over religious liberty and secular government.

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Senate Rejects School Voucher Amendment

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
March 25, 2013

In gearing up for a final vote on the 2014 Budget Resolution, U.S. Senate this past weekend conducted a 13-hour voting session -- commonly referred to as "vote-a-rama" -- during which it rejected a school voucher amendment. 

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Their Audiences Pee in Their Pants with Delight

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 25, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

Good news: One of the voucher amendments CFI asked you to tell your Senators to vote against was defeated on Friday, 60-39. Even Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA), not well-liked by many skeptics for his support of alt-med, spoke strongly against the voucher amendments. 

Robert Evans at Reuters reports on the efforts of CFI and the IHEU to get the UN to stand up for the rights of nonbelievers as it does for other persecuted religious minorities. Said Dr. Elizabeth O'Casey of CFI:

Many people who recognize no supernatural being are suffering and even dying for trying to exercise their right to hold and profess their views. 

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Prawnmageddon

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 22, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

This is happening now-ish: 2014 Budget Resolution (S. Con. Res. 8) is being debated today in the US Senate, and it's got vouchers in it. Our Office of Public Policy would like you to urge your senators to nix that part

So, I was just talking to the Universe, and I was like, hey, Universe, not that you asked, but you don't look a day over 13 billion. Then the Universe was all, thanks, Paul, but I'm actually 13.82 billion! And I was all NO WAY. 

io9 has a list of fictional omnipotent beings, like Q, who are also jerks. Weirdly not on the list: Yahweh.

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An Obscure Gem of a Nonprofit

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 21, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

Emily Willingham at Forbes: Be watchful for panicky stories about how there are more folks with autism than we thought:

. . . if you look at the numbers and the report itself, you’ll see that overall, the numbers of people born with autism aren’t necessarily increasing dramatically. It’s just that we’re getting better and better at counting them 

Chris Stedman offers tips for Christians in connecting with non-Christians without making everyone mad. (And cites our new report on fundamentalism in the military.) 

At Buffalo's ArtVoice, Ian Murphy of The Buffalo Beast calls out CFI as a "positive influence" in the region, but calls us "an obscure gem of a nonprofit," which is weird, but we'll take it.

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