American Humanist Association (AHA)


American Humanist Association (AHA)

The American Humanist Association advocates progressive values and equality for humanists, atheists and freethinkers in the United States. We work to promote humanism--the idea that you can be good without a god.

Location: Washington, DC
Members: 784
Latest Activity: Jun 10

AHA Updates

Humanist Press is the publishing house of the American Humanist Association, providing material for the humanist/freethought/atheist market since 1995.

With the largest print book seller in the United States now selling more ebooks than paper books, it was time the freethought movement invested in the future of publishing so that we can remain relevant and accessible to readers in the U.S. and around the globe.

With new ebooks becoming available on a bi-monthly basis, Humanist Press will have a regularly expanding catalog of interest to atheist and agnostic humanists everywhere. Visit


Darwin Day is a global celebration of science and reason held on or around Feb. 12, the birthday anniversary of evolutionary biologist Charles Darwin.

On this website you can find all sorts of information about Charles Darwin and the International Darwin Day Foundation. If you are hosting a Darwin Day event, you can post information about it on our events listing. You can also locate Darwin Day programs near you by searching our events section.

Let Humanism Ring! The American Humanist Association is pleased to announce that its 73rd Annual Conference will be held June 5-8, 2014 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Join hundreds of humanists, atheists and freethinkers in Philadelphia for a four-day celebration of humanism! The American Humanist Association will feature informative lectures, book signings, celebrity guests, networking opportunities, child care, fun activities and more!

Book your room early by calling the Sheraton Philadelphia Downtown Hotel at 1-800-325-3535 (mention the American Humanist Association) or visit the AHA’s Personalized Reservation Page to get the special rate of $169 per night (subject to taxes). Rates increase after May 5, 2014 so reserve now!

More information will be announced soon!

Discussion Forum

New Young Adult Book

Started by Chris Brockman. Last reply by Don Feb 28, 2015. 5 Replies

Violence Against Women

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Deidre Oct 7, 2014. 11 Replies

Advice for an atheist volunteer.

Started by Vulpes. Last reply by Joan Denoo Feb 4, 2013. 3 Replies

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Comment by Brian Magee on February 12, 2013 at 12:31pm

Congressman Rush Holt to Read Darwin Day Resolution on House Floor

Humanists around the globe to celebrate science and humanity on the anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth

(Washington, DC—Feb 12, 2013)—Today supporters of science and reason are marking the 204th birthday of Charles Darwin as part of International Darwin Day, a project of the American Humanist Association, with hundreds of events around the world. In the United States, Congressman Rush Holt (NJ) is scheduled to formally introduce House Resolution 41 “expressing support for the designation of February 12, 2013 as Darwin Day” on the House floor.

“The passage of Rep. Rush Holt’s proposed resolution in Congress would send a strong message to the world that the United States supports science education,” said American Humanist Association Executive Director Roy Speckhardt. “Charles Darwin’s significant contributions to the advancement of science and our understanding of the world deserve recognition.”

The American Humanist Association worked with Rep. Holt and his staff on the bill and lobbied support from fellow House members. To date, the effort has garnered the support of seven co-sponsors: Rep. Michael Capuano (MA), Rep. Mike Honda (CA), Rep. Ed Markey (MA), Del. Eleanor Norton (DC), Rep. Jared Polis (CO), Rep. Charles Rangel (NY), and Rep. Louise Slaughter (NY) and was referred to the House Science, Space and Technology committee.

The first attempt at getting recognition for Darwin Day in the U.S. Congress occurred in 2011 and was submitted by former Rep. Pete Stark of California.

“There is no valid excuse for failing to recognize the person behind one of the top scientific discoveries of all time. This worldwide annual event was developed to make sure Charles Darwin and his contributions to science are honored,” Speckhardt continued.

The Canadian cities of Vancouver and Regina have issued Darwin Day proclamations, and Asheville, North Carolina City Council Member Cecil Bothwell will be introducing one at the council’s regular meeting this evening.

Charles Darwin’s evolutionary discovery of natural selection as the basis for biological transformations responsible for the diversity of life on earth is the foundation of modern biology, genetics, and medicine. Other areas of science and the humanities can also trace advancements to Darwin’s ideas. Since his publication On the Origin of Species in 1859, additional advances in knowledge have fine-tuned and repeatedly verified his insights.

Comment by Brian Magee on February 6, 2013 at 1:51pm

Richard Leakey to get 2013 Isaac Asimov Science Award!

On the 100th birthday of famed archaeologist Mary Leakey (she's today's Google Doodle), we're pleased to announce that Richard Leakey, her son and prominent paleoanthropologist, will accept the 2013 Isaac Asimov Science Award at the AHA Conference in San Diego this June!

Register now:

Comment by Brian Magee on February 1, 2013 at 12:52pm

Hey atheists: You've got a friend

While there is such a thing as atheists who prefer to antagonize the religious of every stripe-and that’s certainly their right-it’s not the position of the bulk of people who don’t believe in a god. This shouldn't be surprising because people who by their very definition avoid wishful thinking are pragmatic enough to realize that minorities like themselves need friendly allies in order to get things accomplished. And of course, people who highly value freedom of and from religion are also likely to respect people of differing opinions and don’t want to constantly offend those who otherwise share many values.

Most atheists and agnostics want to be clear about convictions regarding the existence of gods and other supernatural concepts. And being in the minority in the U.S., it also makes sense for those who don’t share the majority belief to advocate for strict separation of religion and government. And at times it’s appropriate to criticize religion since some religious ideas hold our society back, such as not yet embracing full LGBT rights and unnecessarily dividing humanity into the chosen and the damned. But in pursuit of respect, in seeking freedom from religion, and in challenging religious injustice, do atheists ever cross the line into activity that may be counterproductive and alienate religious allies?

To read the rest of this Washington Post On Faith article by American Humanist Association Executive Director Roy Speckhardt, click here.

Comment by James M. Martin on January 28, 2013 at 6:13pm

The Center's letter to the Festival is masterful.  Good luck!

Comment by Brian Magee on January 28, 2013 at 2:47pm

AHA Legal Center Demands Summerville, SC YMCA Include Humanist Group

The following is a statement from the AHA's Appignani Humanist Legal Center and can be found on their website here.

January 28, 2013 – The YMCA Flowertown Festival recently refused to allow a local humanist group (Secular Humanists of the Lowcountry, “SHL”) a booth at its annual event in Summerville, SC. The Festival, which will be held in April, is open to the general public and expects to attract over 200,000 visitors this year.

The Festival’s policy permits all types of community groups, including non-profits and civic organizations, to apply for a booth, so long as the group has “inclusive membership” and supports “community building.” Although SHL meets both of these requirements, the YMCA Festival Coordinator told the SHL president not to apply, stating, “We are a Christian organization.”

The Festival’s refusal to do business with an atheist organization amounts to unlawful discrimination on the basis of religion in violation of Title II of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as well as South Carolina’s public accommodations statute.

The Legal Center demanded that the Festival allow SHL to participate in order to avoid litigation as well as criminal penalties under the nondiscrimination statues.

The letter sent to the Summerville Family YMCA can be found here.

Special thanks to the Louis J. Appignani Foundation and The Herb Block Foundation for their support of the Appignani Humanist Legal Center.

Comment by Paula W on January 24, 2013 at 10:36am

There is a petition on regarding bans on atheists in public office. Please sign!

Comment by Brian Magee on January 23, 2013 at 11:53am

Support the Darwin Day Resolution: Contact Your Representative

The American Humanist Association proudly worked with Representative Rush Holt (NJ) to introduce House Resolution 41 “expressing support for designation of February 12, 2013, as Darwin Day and recognizing the importance of science in the betterment of humanity.” We are asking you to help win approval for the resolution by using this form to contact your Congressional representative asking for their co-sponsorship and support.

Visit to learn more about the Darwin Day resolution and join a Darwin Day event in your community. Thank you for standing up for science.

Comment by Joan Denoo on January 20, 2013 at 7:11pm

Alas, James, you state correctly that we already crossed the line and things are going to get worse. That said, what, then, are you I to do? 

Well, first I want to enjoy every moment of life I have, surrounded by people I love and who love me. I want to leave behind a legacy of peace coupled with justice. If our 21st century thoughts and behaviors mean the end of our great civilization, I want to leave behind a testimony of the ways greed and hubris worked together to bring down a society based on scientific achievement, that there is no god to pull us out of our own foolishness, and that those who worship gods are part of the fear and anger and jealousy that created the wars by those who desire to impose their beliefs on others. 

No, I didn't see the movie by P.D. James's Children of Men.  I will watch it. Thanks for the lead.

Comment by James M. Martin on January 20, 2013 at 6:00pm

Joan, I hate to sound so pessimistic, but I think we crossed the line of no return a while back.  It is just going to get worse.  Did you see the movie of P. D. James's Children of Men?  That futurist film envisions a dystopia where nations that are under water, suffering drought and climate-related famine, &c., are on the move, and the migrations are accompanied by a strange malady striking women, making them unable to conceive.  It is brilliantly done. And frightening.

Comment by Joan Denoo on January 20, 2013 at 12:15pm

"The global population is more than 7 billion now and headed to 9 billion by 2050. If world population continues its exponential growth, when we will hit planetary carrying capacity limits with our key resources? (or are we already exceeding them?) What are the just, humane, and rights-respecting options that are on the table for balancing the world's population with the ability of the earth to sustain it?"

Bill Ryerson: The Challenges Presented By Global Population Growth


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