Take Action With Us.
The Center for Inquiry advances its mission through advocacy, education, and outreach programs. No other organization advances science and secularism on as many fronts as CFI. CFI, through its affiliates, the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry and the Council for Secular Humanism, publishes the premier journals on skepticism and humanism, Skeptical Inquirer and Free Inquiry.
CFI offers compelling online courses in science and philosophy, while our youth summer program, Camp Inquiry, brings the excitement of science and critical thinking to the next generation. CFI works at the grassroots level, with local branches that provide a vehicle for collaboration and social interaction, and campus groups, which provide support to freethinkers at both the college and high- school level.
CFI advocates through litigation, lobbying, and its public- policy publications, working through the courts, Congress, state legislatures, government agencies, and international bodies.
We’ve been busy recently…
- Protecting the Rights of Nonbelievers
- Advocating Science Based Medicine
- Sustaining & Expanding the Secular Movement
…and we need YOUR support to continue this important work.
Protecting Rights of Nonbelievers
The Wyndgate Country Club abruptly canceled a CFI–Michigan event featuring biologist Richard Dawkins because of his atheism.
In response to Wyndgate’s refusal to serve CFI-Michigan and Richard Dawkins, CFI filed a federal discrimination case against the Wyndgate, alleging a violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. CFI hopes to recover damages and other appropriate relief and to establish the principle that discrimination against nonbelievers will not be tolerated.
UPDATE: February 2013, the Wyndgate Country Club has agreed to a settlement in the case brought by CFI. This marks perhaps the first time that federal and state civil right statutes have been successfully invoked by non-believers in a public accommodations lawsuit. The terms of this groundbreaking settlement are confidential, but CFI is very satisfied with the resolution of this matter.
Many states allow only religious leaders and some public officials to sign marriage certificates.
Denying nonreligious people the same privilege of choosing a meaningful officiant to solemnize their marriages favors religion over nonreligion and therefore violates the establishment clause. CFI has filed a lawsuit in Indiana to rectify this unequal treatment of religious and nonreligious individuals. Our goal is to ensure that nonbelievers have the same right to choose officiants as believers.
UPDATE: The trial court ruled against CFI’s claim in December 2012, using reasoning that was both factually and legally flawed. CFI is committed to this case and to the principle of equal rights for nonreligious Americans, and CFI has appealed the trial court’s judgment to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.
Advocating for Science-based Medicine
The American Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AAAOM) is lobbying the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for acupuncture to be covered by health-insurance policies.
Acupuncture does not meet the standards for safety, efficacy, medicinal use, and cost-effectiveness required by the Institute of Medicine to be considered an Essential Health Benefit. CFI’s Office of Public Policy published a position paper examining the evidence for and against acupuncture therapy and wrote to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius asking her to reject these lobbying efforts.
Harmful or useless “alternative” medical interventions are being sold side-by-side with FDA-approved drugs in our local pharmacies.
Individuals seeking medical care can be harmed by treatments that have not been proven to cure or treat their medical problems. We should not allow those with illnesses to be exploited by pseudoscientific products. Accordingly, CFI has petitioned the Food and Drug Administration to regulate homeopathic treatments as it regulates medicines of proven efficacy. Our hope is that the FDA will require “alternative” medicines and treatments to go through the same rigorous testing for efficacy and safety as all other medicines.
Sustaining & Expanding the Secular Movement
Throughout the world, governments are suppressing speech deemed critical of religion. As just one example, in Indonesia, Alexander Aan was beaten and jailed for expressing atheistic views through posts and pictures on Facebook.
Free speech is a fundamental human right, and CFI is committed to protecting and defending that right. We advocate for free speech, in particular the right to express one’s views about religion, before the United Nations, the U.S. Congress, and the U.S. State Department. In the case of Alexander Aan, we have held protests, organized letter writing campaigns, petitioned our federal government, and gathered funds to support Aan’s appeal of his case. Our goal is to persuade the Indonesian government to stop the prosecution of Aan and release him from jail.
A new generation in the humanist community is learning, growing, and becoming active.
Young people are not only the future of the secular and skeptical movements, but they will be leaders in every aspect of human life. We give young people the tools, guidance, and inspiration to become effective advocates for secularism and science through in-person training, conferences, seminars, and social media. Our goal is to have today’s youth continue our work in order to make the world a place of reason, science, and secular values.
Take Action With Us…
“Protecting the right to uncensored expression and free inquiry is important for at least two reasons. First, this is the only effective means of challenging religious dogma and pseudoscience. Moreover, this right also has intrinsic value. Human dignity requires the freedom to decide for oneself what to believe and profess. CFI will never waver from its commitment to free expression and free inquiry.”
Ronald A. Lindsay, PhD,
President and CEO, Center for Inquiry
Imagine a world where religion and pseudoscience do not influence public policy. A world where religion no longer enjoys a privileged position.
The Center for Inquiry is working toward these goals and educating the public to use reason, science, and secular values rather than religion and pseudoscience to establish public policy.
Help us Promote Science, Reason, and Secular Values.
When you make a donation to CFI, you become a member of a worldwide movement of humanists, skeptics, atheists, and freethinkers, all working together to promote the secular worldview and give voice to your values.
We apply our principles
by taking action.
Take action with us.