Blog Archives for March 2012

And Why The Reason Rally Was But One Step Forward On A Long Road

No Faith Value with Ronald A. Lindsay
March 29, 2012

The Reason Rally showed the secular movement has come a long way—but much remains to be accomplished.

2 Comments

A Brief Recap of The Reason Rally

No Faith Value with Ronald A. Lindsay
March 29, 2012

The Reason Rally was a wonderful event—rain and all.  The Reason Rally was rightfully billed as a “coming out” party and a celebration.  We showed our fellow Americans that we have the numbers and the commitment to be taken seriously—and we had a great time doing so.  The speakers were eloquent, the entertainers were funny and engaging, and the crowd was uniformly upbeat. 

5 Comments

The Morning Heresy 3/29/12: Homeopathic Job Search

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 29, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

20-year-old Iraqi Faisal Saeed Al Mutar in Big Think: "I didn’t become a Secular Humanist because of my hatred for organized religion but because I understand them. Secular humanism is not a way of revenge but a way of life that all humanity needs."  

The Morning Heresy 3/28/12: What’s In *Your* Wallet?

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 28, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

CFI's Michael De Dora cautiously applauds the lack of anti-blasphemy language in UN Human Rights Council declaration

Speaking of which: Reuters - Kuwaiti government arrests Twitter user for "the abusing of social networks . . . to offend basic Islamic and spiritual values"

The Consumerist: Capital One rejects atheist symbol on customized credit cards, has no problem with Jesus, Jesus, Jesus

I am newly honored with my first dissing from right-wing faux-media watchdog outlet Newbusters   

Keep reading...

2 Comments

UN Human Rights Council Again Adopts Resolution on Religious Intolerance Without Defamation Language

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
March 27, 2012

The United Nations Human Rights Council for the second year in a row has adopted a resolution aimed at combating religious intolerance that does not include language referring to the harmful “defamation of religions" concept.

5 Comments

The Morning Heresy 3/27/12: Get Off My Lawn

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 27, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

More Reason Rally coverage, reaction, and aftermath

Fox-DC TV package is fair and positive, does give unnecessary attention to Cthulu protester guy (oh, look what I did there.)

Sarah Posner in the Guardian: Rally is first show of potential "political muscle" for seculars (This article also features my favorite picture so far from the rally) 

Click here to keep reading...

In Praise of Falling Birth Rates

Advocatus Diaboli with Tom Flynn
March 26, 2012

A recent column by Froma Harrop makes a point I've repeatedly alluded to in FREE INQUIRY -- the demographic contraction that comes from years of falling birthrates is not only survivable, but could portend a more pleasant and sustainable future.

4 Comments

The Morning Heresy 3/26/12: Post-Rally Stupor

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 26, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

This will have to be a quick one today folks. Yes, there's an enormous deluge of Reason Rally coverage, but I just lost hours of work on this morning's Heresy because, yes, I didn't hit "save." And I am crushed. So this was going to be longer, but I think I can still give you the important stuff.

And by the way, it was so great to meet and reunite with so many of you this weekend. I'm very proud of us.

To the news!

3 Comments

The Morning Heresy 3/23/12: In Transit

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 23, 2012

The quick-and-dirty, in-transit-to-the-Reason-Rally edition! 

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo -- LIVE FROM THE PORTLAND, MAINE JETPORT!

Rick Wingrove of Beltway Atheists gets op-ed in WaPo: "Reason Rally will show that all the cool people are atheists now and that the days of consent by silence are over." Hell yes. 

Washington Times coverage of Reason Rally press conference with Dawkins, Silverman, Galef, Bey 

NPR piece on Reason Rally 

Hemant in WaPo: "Even though there may not be a physical building where we can meet, atheists have discovered communities online that weren’t around a decade ago." 

1 Comment

More Americans want less religion in political discourse

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
March 22, 2012

More Americans than not think political leaders are talking too much about their religious beliefs, according to a national survey released earlier this week. 

The Morning Heresy 3/22/12

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 22, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo 

Public opinion tipping point: Pew survey shows majority in US want religion out of politics 

Brave and heroic Tennessee legislator seeks to protect expressions of faith in public schools 

More fun in Tennessee: State Senate passes anti-evolution bill 

3 Comments

Labyrinths, New Age Feminism, and Skepticism

A Skeptic Reads the Newspaper with Ben Radford
March 21, 2012

Skepticism and feminism clash over the ancient (and New Agey) labyrinth symbol. 

2 Comments

The Morning Heresy 3/21/12

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 21, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo 

I lend a quote to a WaPo/RNS piece on the rally, which prominently features SSA's (and Rally press wrangler) Jesse Galef 

Fred Edwords in WaPo: More atheists are "coming out," in part, because we seem more interesting.  

3 Comments

The Morning Heresy 3/20/12

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 20, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo 

(Explanation of what this series is about here.)

USA Today has a big, mostly-positive piece on Reason Rally (by Cathy Lynn Grossman, not exactly a fan of the movement, as evidenced here, comparing American Humanist Association to Westboro Baptist Church in 2010)

PZ is still not happy, but McCreight wants him to suck it up 

Dave Silverman at WaPo on why we need the Rally to begin with 

3 Comments

Limbaugh Caught at For-Pay Sex Talk!

Investigative Briefs with Joe Nickell
March 19, 2012

Rush Limbaugh often refers to feminists as "feminazis," but he simply appears to be projecting his own misogynist tendencies. Now Limbaugh is caught in another contradiction—and in an exposé of his sexual proclivities.

The Morning Heresy 3/19/12

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
March 19, 2012

Welcome to a new feature of CFI's Free Thinking blog, "The Morning Heresy." There's so much going on in the news, both above and below the radar, that relates to the mission of CFI and its affiliate groups, so the management here decided it would be a good idea to get a kind of daily roundup of relevant items in order to keep everyone in the loop. Then it occurred to us, hey, this could be valuable to everyone in the secularist and skeptic movements...

3 Comments

Is there Nothing Wrong with Being Religious?

It’s Only Natural with John Shook
March 17, 2012

Every time an atheist praises religious things, an angel gets his wings.

8 Comments

Shouldn’t Arizona Scrutinize How Men Are Using Viagra?

No Faith Value with Ronald A. Lindsay
March 16, 2012

In the controversy over contraceptive coverage for women in health care plans, things get crazier by the minute. Arizona is considering legislation that would permit religious employers to require women who want reimbursement for the cost of contraception to submit a claim, supported by evidence, that the pills are not being used for contraception, but to treat some other medical issue. Incredible, right?

1 Comment

Being Clear About Our Objectives

No Faith Value with Ronald A. Lindsay
March 14, 2012

Moving Secularism Forward, the joint conference of CFI and the Council for Secular Humanism, took place in Orlando a little over a week ago. The presentations at the conferences have generated a fair amount of commentary (for examples, see here and here). This is a good thing. One of the purposes of our conferences is to get people to think, to debate, and, in some cases, to look at issues from a different perspective.

14 Comments

CFI, IHEU Issue Statement on Religious Tolerance at UN Human Rights Council

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
March 14, 2012

The Center for Inquiry and International Humanist and Ethical Union issue a joint statement at the UN Human Rights Council urging Islamic states to protect basic human rights at home if they are truly concerned about religious tolerance.

2 Comments

Lady Sword Swallower

Investigative Briefs with Joe Nickell
March 12, 2012

On February 25, 2012, more than twenty of the world's dwindling number of sword swallowers "dropped swords" at Ripley's Believe It or Not! Odditoriums worldwide to celebrate the Sixth Annual World Sword Swallower's Day. My wife Diana and I were at the Niagara Falls, Ontario, Ripley's with Vanessa, Canada's celebrated female sword swallower, to watch her have a snack of cold steel.

Rita Swan and Protecting Children from Religious Exemptions

Guest Blog from Dren Asselmeier
March 09, 2012

Last weekend, I had a chance to hear about the advocacy work of Dr. Rita Swan. She gave a talk at the Moving Secularism Forward Conference, and I want to share what I learned because protecting children is a concern we should all have as secular humanists, and as decent human beings.

3 Comments

Zelig Was a Woman: Meet Freethought Campaigner Lucy N. Colman

Advocatus Diaboli with Tom Flynn
March 08, 2012

As we observe International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month, it’s worth remembering one of nineteenth-century America’s most active – and best-connected – freethinkers. Lucy N. Colman (1818-1906) was the Zelig of the Golden Age of Freethought. She contributed to every reform cause of the day and touched the lives of the time’s most noteworthy freethought activists.

Rush Limbaugh, Being a Dick, and Skepticism

A Skeptic Reads the Newspaper with Ben Radford
March 08, 2012

 The controversy over Rush Limbaugh's comments has implications for the skeptical movement. Why Rush is a Dick, and skeptics shouldn't be. 

51 Comments

The Evolution of Altruism and Social Intelligence

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
March 06, 2012

Video of CFI-New York City's recent panel discussion on altruism, decision making, and the evolution of human cognition, featuring prominent psychologists Laurie Santos (Yale) and Felix Warneken (Harvard).

Christians Protesting at the Reason Rally

It’s Only Natural with John Shook
March 04, 2012

On March 24th in DC, the Reason Rally will have company from Faith rallyers.

9 Comments

Senate Rejects Blunt Amendment

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
March 01, 2012

The U.S. Senate has voted 51-48 to table a proposal by Sen. Roy Blunt that would have allowed employers and health insurance providers to exclude any coverage that they deem immoral or contrary to their religious beliefs.