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: Jul 11

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

Humanist Network News

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Comment by Brian Magee on December 18, 2012 at 11:06am

Nonbelievers Get HumanLight Display Erected in Wabash, IN

(Washington, DC – Dec. 18, 2012) – A Christian nativity scene has been joined by a HumanLight display on the grounds of the Wabash County Indiana courthouse. County officials approved it on Dec. 3 following an inquiry made by the American Humanist Association’s Appignani Humanist Legal Center.

HumanLight is a non-religious alternative to Christmas or other December holidays. Observed on December 23rd, HumanLight celebrates positive, secular values such as reason, compassion, humanity and hope.

Attorneys from the Appignani Humanist Legal Center worked with a local Wabash resident who inquired in November about a Christian display on government property. Research showed that the county has an “open forum” policy for the courthouse property, meaning other displays can also be erected. In response to a previous inquiry in 2010, officials wrote that the county “allows anyone to use the Courthouse lawn for expressive purposes as long as the activity does not violate local ordinances, or state or federal laws, is not disruptive to traffic . . . and does not create unreasonable safety risks, and as long as any expression is not obscene or defamatory, and does not promote violence, physical harm, or lawless action.”

“When it comes to church-state separation issues, the best choice is to keep government property free of all religious displays,” said Appignani Humanist Legal Center Director Bill Burgess. “But if a local government defends a nativity scene display by claiming that it is private speech, they must allow other private speakers, including secular ones, to participate in the forum on the same terms. They cannot discriminate against speech because of its humanist or atheist viewpoint.”


The American Humanist Association ( advocates for the rights and viewpoints of humanists. Founded in 1941 and headquartered in Washington, DC, its work is extended through more than 150 local chapters and affiliates across America. Humanism is a progressive philosophy of life that, without theism, affirms our responsibility to lead ethical lives of value to self and humanity.

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

Comment by Brian Magee on December 18, 2012 at 10:56am

AHA Legal Center Gets "Bad Religion" T-Shirt Ban Overturned

An Aurora, CO public school has reversed course following intervention by the AHA's Appignani Humanist Legal Center, allowing a student at Vista Peak High School to wear a shirt for the punk band Bad Religion.

Despite allowing students to wear religious articles of clothing, it claimed that allowing the student to wear the shirt would be disruptive.

In a letter found here, the legal center made clear that this double standard violated the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

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

Comment by Brian Magee on December 17, 2012 at 12:08pm

A Religious Rescue From the Fiscal Cliff

Politicians are working themselves into a frenzy trying to prevent the much feared "fiscal cliff," a term used to describe a bundle of momentous federal tax increases and spending cuts that will happen later this year if government officials fail to act. But as the White House and Congress consider ending middle-class tax breaks like the payroll tax cut while also reducing valued programs like Medicare, they may be missing an opportunity to level the playing field among religious and philosophically-based organizations in a way that would also have a big impact on our nation's ability to return to fiscal solvency.

It's time to reconsider the huge tax benefits and government subsidies that are provided to government-recognized religions in this country. Beyond the obvious constitutional issues of the state giving preferential treatment to religious organizations, it just makes sense that in these times of budget tightening, the government can no longer afford to subsidize religious groups, their leaders, or their programs.

To read the rest of this Huffington Post article from AHA Executive Director Roy Speckhardt, click here.

Comment by Plinius on December 17, 2012 at 10:34am

Welcome, Chris!

Comment by Tabitha McCoy on December 17, 2012 at 9:42am

Welcome, Chris!

Comment by Chris Loren on December 16, 2012 at 11:37pm

glad to be here...

Comment by Brian Magee on December 12, 2012 at 10:37am

Richard Dawkins endorses atheist to fill DeMint’s seat

The effort to get AHA board member Herb Silverman appointed to fill an open S.C. US Senate seat is getting attention. A Charleston newspaper notes the support of Richard Dawkins and has started an online poll where Herb is way ahead!

der adding your vote, and S.C. residents can use our Action Alert system to send a message to Gov. Haley asking her to choose Herb for the post:

Comment by Brian Magee on December 11, 2012 at 12:19pm

Keeping Our Human Light Lit During the Holidays

HumanLight is about celebrating and expressing what fills our lives with love and meaning.

By Roy Speckhardt, December 09, 2012

The winter holiday season is a great time for families and friends to get together and enjoy each other's company. It's among the few times each year that those close to us join to reflect, celebrate, and perhaps eat a bit too much fattening food.

From a humanist perspective, one of the most enriching things we can do is strengthen the connections we share with other human beings, and this time often provides us just such an opportunity. Unfortunately, most of these holidays also have deep religious connections. And depending on how nontheists came to exclude an intervening god from their worldview, some would rather forget those religious connections, and others even find them to be unpalatable.

Most humanists, freethinkers, and other nontheists came to their rational understanding of the world gradually, finding flaws in the faith they were raised in and eventually deciding for themselves on alternatives to the supernatural. Some others were already there, having been raised in secular ethical traditions. But some came to their nontheism more abruptly, as a response to harm experienced from within traditional religions. This could be something dramatic, like the tens of thousands of kids who were molested by Catholic priests, probably only a small portion of whom have sought justice in recent years. It might also be less dramatic, but still significant, like discovering all of a sudden just how ineffective prayer can be.


To read the rest of this Patheos article by American Humanist Association Executive Director Roy Speckhardt, click here.

Comment by Brian Magee on December 10, 2012 at 10:00am

AHA Executive Director Roy Speckhardt recently appeared on the Fox News Radio program The Vipp Jaswal Report and had a cordial and informative discussion on humanism and the AHA. The podcast of the program is found here, where comments are welcomed.

Comment by Brian Magee on December 6, 2012 at 1:58pm

Continuum for Humanist Education

The Humanist Institute is pleased to announce the addition of Level Two online courses to the Continuum for Humanist Education (COHE) website. Level two courses include: Humanist Activism & Organization, Science & Humanism, Psychology & Humanism, Law & Politics, Religion & Spirituality, Ethics and Philosophy & the Humanist Connection.

Register today to access these free online courses!


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