Showing posts with label Atheists. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Atheists. Show all posts

Friday, October 17, 2014

My sentiments exactly.


Thursday, October 16, 2014

California Atheist wins 2 million dollar lawsuit after being sent to jail for objecting to faith based drug rehab program.

Barry A. Hazle Jr.
Courtesy of HuffPo:  

A California atheist has won a settlement of nearly $2 million after being sent to jail on a parole violation for objections he made about participating in a faith-based rehab program. 

Barry A. Hazle Jr., 46, served time for a conviction of methamphetamine possession in 2007. As a condition of his parole, he was enrolled in a drug treatment program where participants were required to acknowledge a "higher power," according to the Sacramento Bee. 

Hazle complained and asked for a different treatment program, but was told the only option in his area was the faith-based, Westcare 12-step program, according to the Record Searchlight. 

Hazle was sent back to jail for more than three months for allegedly being “disruptive, though in a congenial way, to the staff as well as other students" and being "sort of passive-aggressive,” the paper reported. 

"I’m thrilled to finally have this case settled," Hazle told the Searchlight. "It sends a clear message to people in a position of authority, like my parole agent, for example, that they not mandate religious programming for their parolees, and for anyone else, for that matter."

This may seem like a small thing, but it is actually a rather significant victory for Atheists. 

Religious organizations discovered long ago that proselytizing to people when they were at their most vulnerable had a much higher success rate for conversion then simply going door to door, having potlucks, or hosting bingo.

That is why there are so many religious based therapy groups, substance abuse clinics, and prison programs. They know that people struggling to stay afloat in a sea of adversity will cling to any lifeline thrown their way.

So yeah winning the right to be excluded, without fear of incarceration, from organizations which really only substitute one crutch for another, is kind of a big deal.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Ex-pastor starts "church" for non-believers and local Christian respond with love and support. Just kidding, they left threatening notes in their mailbox.

Courtesy of the Friendly Atheist:

My friend and ex-pastor Jerry DeWitt runs a monthly secular gathering in Lake Charles, Louisiana called Community Mission Chapel. It’s one of the more successful “atheist churches,” drawing in a sizable number of atheists who appreciate the camaraderie.

Hemant Mehta then reports that the two notes up above were left in one of the attending families mailbox.

Here is what they say for those who cannot enlarge them enough to see:  

We know who you are. We know where you live. We know where you work. You’re little group of devil worshippers isn’t welcome here. Let the love and message of the Lord filter through you and may you escape from the eternal damnation that you have condemned you and you’re innocent children to. Repent you’re Satanistic ways or you will find that the Lord works in VERY mysterious ways. You are against God and are not welcome in this area and we WILL spread his message to the hearts and minds of your innocent children. To deny His word to your children is abuse, and if you do not learn to love Him and His word then we will have no choice but to take action to protect your children from your devil-enabling ways. Do not even try to report this to the police — we are every where and His work will be done in His name thru us, the true beleivers. 
… 
You could not keep away from it, could you? You and your group are infecting this area and driving THE ONE TRUE GOD out. We have warned you before. We are warning you again. We will stop you any way we have too. He has misterious ways. Keep you’re family close.

You know if you feel that you need to threaten people in order to get them to join your religion, you are following the wrong religion.

And yes I am looking at you as welll Islam.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Man who was a minister for over 30 years come out as an Atheist. Wait, you can do that?

Courtesy of the Friendly Atheist:  

Rev. Bob Ripley was a minister for more than three decades, including 15 years spent as Senior Minister at Metropolitan United Church, a major Canadian congregation. He also wrote a syndicated column discussing religion for the past 25 years. His most recent column, however, may raise a lot of eyebrows, because Ripley talks about how he no longer believes in God:… I need to tell you that I’ve changed my mind. Where once I proclaimed the doctrines of Christianity with passion and sincerity, I am now convinced that religion, all religion, is man-made. As with the long line of deities dotting the history of our species, the idea of one God, Yahweh, made manifest in Jesus of Nazareth, is our means to an end — to explain how we got here, for instance, or to avoid looking fate in the face or to gain an edge over our enemies. 

… 

If all this makes you sad, I’m sorry. Please remember that I have not changed. The heart that was once surrendered to Jesus Christ, that gave itself to others and infused a vocation with kindness, still beats in me. If you have ever met me, know that the person I was then, I am now, still striving for integrity and capable of profound love. 

I’m not lost. I began this journey by asking questions. It continued by not being content with trite cliches or lazy affirmations. Curiosity is an amazing accelerant. I am a passionate advocate for unremitting intellectual honesty, for reason and reality, for love and learning. My advocacy simply no longer assumes a deity. 

I still believe. I believe no person or group of persons is inferior to any other. I believe that what matters is not so much what we believe, but how we conduct ourselves for these few short, fragile years of being alive. I believe that being aware of the beauty and wonder of the universe, including this pale blue dot in the remote corner of one of billions of galaxies, is an indescribably wonderful privilege.

You know I have believed for quite some time that there are a number of ministers who no longer believe, but simply cannot bring themselves to walk away from the only life they have ever known.

I also think that in reality there are more non-believers in the world than believers. They simply hide that fact in deference to family, or career, or social position, instead living in constant fear of ever letting on to others their lack of faith.

In some ways these people are in a similar place to closeted homosexuals. Forever forced to deny their true selves in a desperate attempt to fit in with those around them.

Hopefully soon we will witness the same acceptance for the non-religious community that we are now beginning to witness among the LGBT community.

I know that's my goal.

Friday, September 26, 2014

South Carolina high school student insulted and threatened with punishment for refusing to stand during Pledge.

The original pledge.
Courtesy of American Humanist Association:  

Today the American Humanist Association’s Appignani Humanist Legal Center sent a letter to officials at the Beaufort County School District in Beaufort, South Carolina, on behalf of an anonymous student who has been denied his constitutional rights to refrain from participating in the school’s daily Pledge of Allegiance exercise. 

The student, a ninth grader at Right Choices Alternative School, identifies as an atheist and opposes the phrase “under God” in the Pledge. When he has attempted to remain seated at his desk in a quiet and undisruptive manner during the Pledge recitation, his teacher has instructed him to stand, has told him that school policy requires him to stand and has also threatened him with punishment. In addition, the teacher has argued with the student about his atheism, has questioned the student’s patriotism and has insisted that his actions are offensive to members of the U.S. armed services. The student contacted the American Humanist Association’s Appignani Humanist Legal Center through the organization’s DontSaythePledge.com campaign website. 

“Threatening a student with punishment simply for exercising his or her right to sit out the Pledge demonstrates a shocking disregard for the rights of free speech and religious freedom,” said David Niose, legal director of the Appignani Humanist Legal Center. 

“No one should have her or his patriotism questioned for objecting to the phrase ‘under God’ in the Pledge of Allegiance,” said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association. “Doing so marginalizes humanist and atheist kids as second-class citizens merely for exercising their constitutional rights.”

You know at first I was not sure that this whole sitting down during the Pledge of Allegiance would have any impact, but this is starting to look promising.

 My fantasy is that they apply enough pressure that the words "under God" are forever removed from the pledge.

And you know, that might not be such an impossible thing to accomplish. Especially when you consider the fact that the words were put in there in 1954 in response to pressure from the Knights of Columbus.

Of course my next fantasy is about doing away with a nationalist pledge altogether, but perhaps it's best to take these things one at a time.

Louisiana congressional candidate, and cousin to the Duck Dynasty dipshits, blames the Sandy Hook massacre on Atheism. Wait, what?

Courtesy of Buzzfeed:  

Zach Dasher, the cousin of the Duck Dynasty family who is challenging incumbent Republican Rep. Vance McAllister in Louisiana’s 5th Congressional district, once blamed atheism for the Sandy Hook school shooting. 

Before running for Congress, Dasher was the proprietor of the website Willingtothink.org, which bills itself as a website and podcast “a website and podcast dedicated to encouraging folks to be willing to think about the deeper questions in life.”

“These children that were killed in Connecticut were made for purpose and to be honest with you even the killer himself was made for a purpose,” Dasher said on one podcast titled “Why did this happen,” which discussed the Sandy Hook shootings. 

Dasher says the Adam Lanza, the shooter, was “made in the image of God” but started to believe “what the atheist says.” 

“He was made in the image of God,” he said. “But somewhere along the way he believed what the atheist says. He reduced humanity to nothing more than a collection of atoms, to be discarded like an old banana peel. I guarantee you, now this is my hypothesis, that even saw himself as nothing more than chemicals.”

Yes, of course that makes perfect sense that once you stop believing in an omnipotent sky daddy, that of course you start murdering your fellow human beings. 

Which of course, as you know, is backed up by sound research that can be found in the scientific journal entitled "Facts I Pulled Right Out of My Ass."

( Hey I guess we should simply be impressed that at least this Right Wing nutjob doesn't think the Sandy Hook shootings were an elaborate hoax.)

Personally I am getting sick and tired of  Atheists being blamed for EVERYTHING these days.

The next thing you know they will start blaming us for the low attendance at church and a reduction in religious belief in America. (Oh you know what? Those might be our fault.)

Now if you are thinking to yourself, "Hey I have totally seen this dim bulb someplace before," that is because you have totally seen this dim bulb someplace before:

Yep, just another winner endorsed by the Wasilla Wendigo.

Kind of makes me wonder just how low your IQ has to be before Palin will give your campaign her cloven hoof of approval? I'm guessing the low 80's.

Hey speaking of low IQ's there is now a Duck Dynasty video game where you have to perform certain tasks in order to "become a Robertson."

Which is kind of interesting since Dasher also said the following: 

“Porn and video games are the most obvious symptoms of what is wrong with our culture but they of themselves are not the core problem,” Dasher said. “Those are the symptoms. So some people want to blame this on porn and video games. Look, does it contribute? Yes. Is it the core of the cause? No. These are also symptoms.”

You know maybe the next time that Dasher gets invited to go deep into the wilderness with the heavily armed Robertson clan he might consider taking a pass.

They might be all about forgiving sins, but costing them money on merchandising? Probably not so much.

White Evangelicals see themselves as the group most discriminated against in America. No, I am NOT making that up.

Courtesy of the Daily Banter:  

The Pew Forum has released a doozy of a poll about religion in public life in the United States showing that white evangelical Christians possess grossly overdeveloped feelings of victimhood. Given that the voting bloc evangelicals comprise is one of the most heavily pandered to in American politics, and given the fact that evangelicals themselves are the cause of some very real discrimination, there is thus a mountainous irony at play here. 

In a survey of 2,002 Americans, Pew found that 72% believe that religious influence is waning in the country, and sadly, 56% regard this as a “negative development.” A disturbing 59% of Americans say they want members of Congress to “have strong religious beliefs.” When it comes to discrimination, believe it or not, more Americans think that evangelicals are discriminated against than atheists.

Notice that of white evangelicals, white mainline Protestants, black Protestants, white Catholics, Hispanic Catholics, and those who are unaffiliated with any religion, it’s white evangelicals who are much more likely to think “there is a lot of discrimination” against them, with 50% believing their demographic is discriminated against “a lot.” Amazingly, white evangelicals believe there is more discrimination against them than there is against Muslims, blacks, Hispanics, Jews, and atheists. 

So to be clear, the group that has dominated politics in this country for the last forty years, and whose favorite holiday is celebrated nationally, believes that THEY are more discriminated against than any other group in a country founded by white Christians.

I have no words.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

In the least surprising news of the day Stephen Hawking has come out as an Atheist.

Courtesy of Raw Story:  

Stephen Hawking clarified this week that he was an atheist because science had provided him with a “more convincing” explanation of the origins of the universe. 

According to NBC News, Hawking made the comments to the Spanish-language paper El Mundo during the Starmus Festival at Tenerife in the Canary Islands. 

El Mundo’s Pablo Jauregui pointed out that Hawking had written in his book “A Brief History of Time” that scientists could “know the mind of God” if a unifying set of principles — or theory of everything — was discovered to explain the physical universe. But Hawking later wrote in “The Grand Design” that God was no longer necessary because science had provided a better understanding of the universe. 

“Before we understand science, it is natural to believe that God created the universe,” the world-famous theoretical physicist told Jauregui. “But now science offers a more convincing explanation.” 

“What I meant by ‘we would know the mind of God’ is, we would know everything that God would know, if there were a God, which there isn’t,” he added. “I’m an atheist.”

However Hawking DOES believe that we are not alone in the universe.

“The idea that we are alone in the universe seems to me completely implausible and arrogant,” Hawking told the paper. “Considering the number of planets and stars that we know exist, it’s extremely unlikely that we are the only form of evolved life.”

I am in total agreement with both of these statements. 

I have to say however that I have been counting Hawking as an Atheist for some time now, and am a little surprised that it took him this long to make it official.

Could have a little something to do with the fact that people generally have a lower opinion of Atheists than they do child molesters, rapists, and pond scum.


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Barney Frank and former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe are teaming up in campaign to help end discrimination against the non-religious. Hey, that's me!

Courtesy of HuffPo:  

Former Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe have signed on to a new campaign to end discrimination against atheists, agnostics and the nonreligious. 

Openly Secular, a coalition of more than two dozen secular organizations, seeks to debunk misconceptions about secular people by encouraging nontheists to come forward and raise awareness for the 29 percent of Americans who identify as nonreligious. 

In an Openly Secular campaign video posted Friday, Kluwe, who described himself as "cheerfully agnostic and openly secular," urged nonbelievers to advocate for their rights. 

"It's important for secularists to be vocal about who they are ... in a truly functional society, in a stable society, everyone is afforded the same freedom to be who they are no matter what that is as long as it doesn't infringe upon the rights of other people to be who they are," Kluwe said. "If you want to enjoy your own beliefs, then you have to fight for everyone else's beliefs just as hard, because if you don't, someday you might be on the other side of that line and you're not going to be very happy when that day comes."

Is it weird that I want to say amen to that?

Personally I am in favor of anything that will de-stigmatize Atheists and allow people to understand that we are not attacking their religious beliefs. We simply do not want them shoved down our throats.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Air Force changes its rules after airman refuses to say "so help me God" as part of his oath for reenlistment.





Courtesy of the Washington Post:  


After an airman was unable to complete his reenlistment because he omitted the part of a required oath that states “so help me God,” the Air Force changed its instructions for the oath. 

Following a review of the policy by the Department of Defense General Counsel, the Air Force will now permit airmen to omit the phrase, should they so choose. That change is effective immediately, according to an Air Force statement. 

“We take any instance in which Airmen report concerns regarding religious freedom seriously,” Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James said in the statement. “We are making the appropriate adjustments to ensure our Airmen’s rights are protected. 

“The Air Force will be updating the instructions for both enlisted and commissioned Airmen to reflect these changes in the coming weeks, but the policy change is effective now. Airmen who choose to omit the words ‘So help me God’ from enlistment and officer appointment oaths may do so.”

Okay that is just great news and a real step forward for the non-theists in this country.

I am very excited about he progress that we are making right now in tamping down the rampant religiosity and embracing a more secular point of view.

Nobody wants to deprive people of their religious freedom, but there is no excuse for it invading the lives of those who choose a different path.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Gotta love Hugh Laurie.

My daughter absolutely loves House and is always on my case to watch it.

After reading this I just might have to cave.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

American Humanist Association launches campaign urging students and others to sit out the Pledge of Allegiance until "under God" is removed.

Courtesy of AHA:  

Today the American Humanist Association launched a national campaign to encourage people to sit out the Pledge of Allegiance until the phrase “under God” is removed from it. 

The campaign includes YouTube video ads, as well as bus stop advertisements placed in New York City and Washington, D.C. Ads will direct viewers to a website, DontSaythePledge.com, which provides information about the history of the Pledge, including that “under God” was not added until 1954, during the McCarthy era, and that a 1943 U.S. Supreme Court ruling on West Virginia v. Barnette gives students the right to opt out of saying the Pledge. The website also provides resources for parents to discuss the Pledge with their children, as well as a way for students to report harassment or bullying they might have experienced for exercising their right to remain seated during the Pledge. 

“We want everyone to know that the current wording of the Pledge discriminates against atheists and others who are good without a god, and we want them to stand up for fairness by sitting down until the Pledge is restored to its original, unifying form,” said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association. 

“Through the daily Pledge exercise, our public schools are defining patriotism by promoting god-belief while stigmatizing atheist and humanist children,” said David Niose, legal director of the American Humanist Association’s Appignani Humanist Legal Center. “This violates the principles of equal rights and nondiscrimination, which is why we are currently challenging ‘under God’ in the Pledge with a lawsuit in New Jersey.”

Well this is certainly going to cause a shit storm. 

However so be it.

This whole idea is in response to a study that determined that 34% of Americans supported the idea of removing "under God" after learning that it was not part of the original pledge.

I cannot tell you the number of times I had to suppress my frustration while standing with students standing for the pledge. Hell a few times I was even told to lead it.

AHA is right, the words "under God" are NOT part of the original pledge, and if they can be added twelve years after the it was officially adopted by the Congress, then they can be removed sixty years after that.

To be honest I am not exactly pleased that kids are forced to recite any kind of pledge to this country.

There is something very fascist to me to have children all over the country standing together and reciting words of obedience to a country which really needs critical thinkers keeping an eye on it, and not blind patriots excusing every terrible thing that it does around the world.

This country is only great when we demand that it be great, not when we simply convince ourselves that no matter what the future holds it will never be anything less than great.

Taking "under God" out is a good start, but doing away with the whole thing seems an even better choice. 

Sunday, August 24, 2014

It's easy to be an Atheist.

For those who are having trouble reading the sign:

"It's easy to be an Atheist when you don't think about there everything (Including God) came from."

Yes, it is SO easy to be an Atheist.

And the reason is because we simply do not think. Nope, not us.

You sure nailed our asses random guy with a sign.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Which god?

The above is my go to response to the question "Do you believe in God?"

It never fails to give them pause, but usually they follow up with something along the lines of "Well the one true God of course. the God of the Bible."

At that point they have lost the argument as all you have to do is to start listing off the thousands of gods that have been worshiped by man, and ask them why THEIR deity is so special.

That usually ends the discussion, though if it does not you can always ask them what their argument against believing in Set, or Padma, or Odin entails and then ask them how that same criteria fails to disprove the one God that they have chosen to believe is real.

It is always good to remind religious people that we are ALL atheists.

It is just that some Atheists believe in one less god than the majority do.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

St. Paul Atheists have officially left the closet.

Courtesy of the Political Carnival: 

The Interfaith Conversation Cafe in St. Paul, which gathers people of many religions for a monthly discussion, is now open to nonreligions. The organizers have removed "faith" from the name, explaining that atheists felt excluded by it, and are calling it the "Interbelief Conversation Cafe." 

"We are leaders in the field," said Frank Burton, a member of the Minneapolis branch of Circle of Reason, a group that includes atheists and believers and lobbied for the change. 

Minnesota's atheists are coming out of the closet. 

The St. Paul Saints have had an atheist-themed baseball game in each of the past three seasons. There's an "Atheists Talk" program on KTNF-AM 950 on Sunday mornings. 

Nationally, books on atheism have been best-sellers, and the debut of the channel Atheist TV was announced last week. 

"I think atheists are getting organized," said University of Minnesota professor Penny Edgell, who will be teaching what she said is the state's first class in atheism starting in September. "It's a wave of visibility."

Well what do you know? It looks like the place to be an Atheist is Minnesota.

Who knew?

Personally I love stories of Atheists being accepted around the world, and of their voices being heard instead of having them silenced by those who want to vilify and persecute them for daring to reason.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Alabama news station asks for opinions from viewers about a woman who is promoting the idea of a privately funded atheist display. Oh, this won't go well.

Courtesy of Raw Story:  

Responding to a question posed on a Facebook page — maintained by Alabama television station WKRG — asking for opinions on a recent proposal for a privately-funded atheist display, self-identified Christians filled the comment section with vitriol and hatred for a woman speaking for a Mobile atheist group. 

According to the Friendly Atheist, WKRG focused the question, not on the display itself, but on Amanda Scott who represented the Mobile Atheist Community. 

“FACEBOOK QUESTION: What are your thoughts on a local woman who wants to see an Athiest motto placed next to the words “In God We Trust” at Government Plaza?,” WKRG posted. 

What followed were several thousand comments — many deleted now– attacking Scott, wishing for her death, telling her to leave the country, and criticizing her appearance.

Here are just a few of those responses as captured by the Friendly Atheist:

You know if Jesus really were to come back and meet some of the people who claim to be followers of the religion inspired by him, he would waste no time in staging a self crucifixion before one of these terrible people could ask him to pose for a selfie with them.

What is it that Gandhi said again?

“I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.” 

Amen to that. 

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Diner stops giving 15% discounts to customers who pray before meals. In other words, there was a diner that gave 15% discounts to people that prayed!

Courtesy of CBS: 

A North Carolina diner has stopped giving discounts to customers who pray in public after an atheist organization threatened to sue. 

The Freedom From Religion Foundation wrote a letter to Mary Haglund, owner of Mary’s Gourmet Diner, threatening legal action if the diner did not drop the 15 percent discount for praying because it violated the Civil Rights Act. 

The “promotional practice favors religious customers, and denies customers who do not pray and nonbelievers the right to ‘full and equal’ enjoyment of Mary’s Gourmet Diner,” attorney Elizabeth Cavell wrote in the letter. 

Following the letter, Haglund posted a note on the diner door informing customers that the 15 percent discount will no longer be allowed.

Okay look I know that sometimes religious people have a hard time understanding that not everybody sees the world as they do, but seriously how hard wast to realize that this was incredibly discriminatory? 

It would be like a Jewish butcher offering 15% off if their customers would drop trou to prove they were circumcised.

Kind of like 15% off for proving you had 5% off.

It kind of makes me wonder how many Atheists went into Mary's Diner, bowed their heads, and muttered under their breath "Hail Satan, Lord of Darkness, thank you for this meal, and for helping us to get 15% off on the check?"

Friday, August 08, 2014

Why Atheists have every right to be angry.

Believe it  or not I have never considered myself to an angry Atheist.

I mean I get pissed off at some of the things done in the name of religion around the world, irritated at the fact that those identifying themselves as Christian get a kind of moral free pass, and frustrated that so many people allow themselves to be taken advantage of by religious leaders sometimes.

But I am not walking around with a chip on my shoulder just bruising for a fight.

Trust me I have been that guy, and I am quite a bit more calm, cool, and collected than I was in years past.

So I did not think that I would agree with too many of the points made by Greta Christina on her blog the other day.

But I was wrong.

Here take a look at some of her examples explaining why it is okay for Atheists to feel anger:

I'm angry that according to a recent Gallup poll, only 45 percent of Americans would vote for an atheist for President. 

I'm angry that it took until 1961 for atheists to be guaranteed the right to serve on juries, testify in court, or hold public office in every state in the country. 

I'm angry that almost half of Americans believe in creationism. And not a broad, "God had a hand in evolution" creationism, but a strict, young-earth, "God created man pretty much in his present form at one time within the last 10,000 years" creationism. 

I'm angry that women are dying of AIDS in Africa and South America because the Catholic Church has convinced them that using condoms makes baby Jesus cry. 

I'm angry that women are having septic abortions -- or are being forced to have unwanted children who they resent and mistreat -- because religious organizations have gotten laws passed making abortion illegal or inaccessible. 

I'm angry at preachers who tell women in their flock to submit to their husbands because it's the will of God, even when their husbands are beating them within an inch of their lives. 

I'm angry that so many parents and religious leaders terrorize children -- who (a) have brains that are hard-wired to trust adults and believe what they're told, and (b) are very literal-minded -- with vivid, traumatizing stories of eternal burning and torture to ensure that they'll be too frightened to even question religion.

There is more, much more, and I found myself agreeing with just about all of it. 

And do you know what? It made me a little bit angry.

It is incredibly hard to stand on the outside looking at a world at war over religious differences, at leaders who are directed by ancient religious teachings that have little or no value in the world today, and at the simple minded adherence to a faith that is based on misinformation and oft repeated lies.

You see we live in this world too. And the decisions of the magical thinkers, who often seek and attain important roles in our community, impact the rational among us as well.

And if we dare to disagree. If we dare to point out the obvious illogical thought process that went into the decision making, we are vilified and marginalized until our combined voices are less than the squeaking of a mouse.

That is why we must take our anger, take our frustration, take our bruised and battered psyches, and stand up for what we know is a right, and fight for an enlightened tomorrow.

We owe it to our country, we owe it to our children, and we owe it to ourselves.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Is this really so hard to understand?

I recently saw somebody respond to the challenge of how an Atheist can know there is no God.

And his response was "That's is a very good question. Why don't you explain to me the formula by which you know there is no Zeus, no Odin, no Ra, and I will use that to determine the nonexistence of the Christian God as well."

Atheists don't have the burden of proof, we just have a reasonable expectation that somebody trying to prove something extraordinary would have extraordinary evidence to support it.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Atheists to get their own TV channel. This is a GREAT idea, said no religious person ever.

Courtesy of The Telegraph:

 ....next week sees the launch of America's first dedicated TV channel for non-believers. Atheist TV launches in New York and will broadcast 24 hours a day via Roku, the internet streaming service that allows people to watch internet-based channels on their TVs. Roku only has seven million subscribers, but anyone can watch it streamed online at www.atheists.tv 

Free-thinkers, as atheists style themselves, remain almost bizarrely under-represented in American public life and discourse. There is not a single openly declared atheist among the 535 members of Congress, and it is conventional electoral wisdom that the President of the United States has to be a believer. 

The profile of atheism is very slowly starting to change, with an increasingly vocal atheist community, including high-profile adherents like Brad Pitt and Mark Zuckerberg. Even so, non-belief, is still a very long way from acceptance.

The channel is backed by American Atheists, the civil rights organisation founded in 1963 that takes a pretty confrontational approach to defending separation of church and state, including fighting a legal battle against the "9/11 miracle cross" being placed in the museum commemorating the September 11 attacks 

The organisers tell me the channel will broadcast 24 hours, mostly with licenses and pre-recorded content, such as documentaries by the Richard Dawkins Foundation as well as a talk show titled "Atheist Viewpoint" and a call-in show, "Atheist Experience". 

I don't know what I'm going to enjoy more watching more, interesting thought provoking programming featuring the likes of Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, and other freethinkers, or simply watching all of the conservatives and fundamentalist heads exploding.

I think they should dedicate an entire day to an "Inherit the Wind" marathon.

Another day could be dedicated to airing clips of religious apologists getting hitchslapped.

And perhaps yet another to  George Carlin comedy routines.

I'd watch that.

This may seem a trivial thing, and perhaps it is. But it is yet another sign for Atheists that it is starting to be okay for us to come out of the closet and proudly proclaim our emancipation from the chains of religious intolerance.