...they [the Roman Catholic Church] for example thought that slavery was perfectly fine... absolutely okay, and then they didn't, and what is the point of the Catholic Church if it says, “oh well we couldn't know better because nobody else did”? [To the affirmative team] Then what are you for?!
-- Stephen Fry, answering a question during the 2009 Intelligence Squared debate, “Is the Catholic Church a force for good in the world?”
Of course, slavery was okay to…
Sometime in early November, 2009, an atheist friend of mine on the now-defunct Experience Project website directed me over to a relatively new site called Atheist Nexus. There, EVERYONE was an atheist, and you didn’t have to worry about believers crashing the party and constantly trying to convert you. Gee, I thought, I should have a look, and I did, and what I found was a lively, vital community of freethinkers who had no problem with stating their points of view in boldface.…
Over the last couple of weeks, I've been hanging out at Hemant Mehta's Friendly Atheist website, reading and commenting on his multiple daily posts. This afternoon, while scanning an entry regarding an art teacher who was criticizing students whose work offended her Christian sensibilities, someone posted the following graphic, which I thought was particularly disturbing, especially considering its source:…
This is an open letter to certain people … people who are supposed to work for the government on our behalf in an official capacity. It can be a cop or a judge or a district attorney, a mayor, governor, or even a president. Judge Roy Moore comes to mind ... and more recently Judge Tammy Kemp. If her name doesn’t ring a bell, think “Amber Guyger.” Kim Davis qualifies here as well. As to presidents, use a little imagination and at least one or two should come to mind. Regardless, this is…Continue
I have recently learned that, in the Democratic Primary Debate, scheduled for tomorrow, 12 September, 2019, ABC News has once again opted not to air the following commercial, sponsored by the FFRF:
Sadly, there is little new in this decision, being that none of the major networks are given to offering air time to the FFRF. That does…
Added by Loren Miller on September 11, 2019 at 3:10pm — No Comments
Sadie was never the friendliest cat I’d met from the time I first ran onto her in my gal’s apartment. She always had a bit of a ’tude about her, best characterized by her meow. “AAAAOOOOWWWW,” as in “Who you think you messin’ with, bud?” Her attitude mellowed at least a little with the years and the move from the apartment to the house. She allowed herself to be groomed by Morris, our Maine Coon and would even come up in my lap for a pet-pet, but there was always that grumpy cat underneath…Continue
So I open my digital copy of the Cleveland Plain Dealer the other day (3 July, 2019), and after passing the first couple pages, what do I get confronted with on Page A5 but the following:
The text that followed was pretty predictable: quotes from founding fathers, congressmen (no congresswomen, I noted!), Supreme Court justices and some other…
13 June, 2019
Congresswoman Nancy Patricia Pelosi
Longworth House Office Building
15 Independence Ave SE
Washington, DC 20515
Dear Congresswoman Pelosi:
For the past not quite two and one half years, we have watched the presidency of Donald Trump unfold, entirely too often with the pattern of undoing, controverting or negating standards of operation or behavior which virtually any other occupant of the Oval Office would treat as sacrosanct. He…
Samwell Tarly: Why just us? We represent all the great houses, but whoever we choose, he won't just rule over lords and ladies. Maybe the decision about what's best for everyone should be left to ... well ... everyone.
The war in Westeros is over. King’s Landing has been wrested from the hands of House Lannister. As Game of Thrones wound down toward its end and a council is assembled to choose a new king or queen, perhaps the saddest part of this…
Ever hear the one about the Arab and the camel? Well, the short version goes like this:
An Arab is in his tiny tent in the desert while his camel is tethered outside. It's a cold night and the camel asks the Arab if he can stick his nose in the tent to warm it. The Arab assents ... but then the camel's ears are cold, and then his neck, then his hump ... and the next thing you know, the camel is in the tent and the Arab is out in the cold.
I submit that something…
It took a while after The Thinking Atheist premiered on the internet before its host, Seth Andrews, was willing to talk about the impact that his atheism had on his family and his relationship with them. His parents, being theologians and deeply rooted in their belief, were never going to take the news well, but what made it worse for Seth was their apparently unceasing attempts to woo him back to the fold. What I suspect they have no understanding of is that, once the blinkers have been…Continue
Living in Bedford Heights has been markedly enjoyable for the nine years since my wife and I moved here. It’s quiet, the neighbors are terrific, the town is well kept with excellent city services, and I really can’t think of a single negative to register. I doubt it would rate as a utopia, but it’ll do until utopia comes along.
One of the items we get from the city on a yearly basis is a calendar, which mostly outlines city events, council meetings and the like. Up until this…
You remember the movie Network, don’t you? Peter Finch as veteran UBS anchorman Howard Beale, growling into a TV camera, “I’m mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!” That was a potent declaration of independence and non-conformance that Beale made. The only problem is that he shrunk away from it not that much later, in the face of billionaire mogul Arthur Jensen. Jensen’s sole purpose was to use Beale as a Pied Piper to mollify the peasantry, the better to pursue his own…Continue
Added by Loren Miller on February 1, 2019 at 9:10am — No Comments
Some time back, I was watching a conference on YouTube, featuring some notable high-end audio equipment designers. What does that have to do with atheism, you might well ask. Well, one of the designers present, in talking about design theory and best practices, made mention of being “skeptical” of these standards, and then he dropped the following bombshell:
In a battle between theory and the real world, the real world always wins.
-- Kevin Hayes, VAC
My copy of FFRF’s Freethought Today recently went upside my head with a statement quoted on Page 3 of their November 2018 issue:
The bottom line is that while church and state are formally separated, religious legislators are still driven by their religious beliefs when voting in the Senate on all issue areas. This mechanism circumvents the formal separation of church and state and brings religion into politics through the back door.
-- Daniel Arnon, Emory…
I am FURIOUS … again. With the advent of the new film, Boy Erased, and renewed attention to the “business” of conversion therapy, I am reminded once again of the arrogance displayed by the evangelical Christian community in thinking that, because Yahweh condemned men for loving other men and women for loving other women, that it was somehow incumbent on them to attempt to correct this supposed flaw in their personalities. Also reminding me of this issue was…Continue
The “new normal” becomes yet more virulent. On Saturday, 27 October, 2018, a gunman entered the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and opened fire, killing 11 of the congregants. Four police officers were also wounded when they responded to the incident before the assailant was taken into custody. Investigation into his background yielded results which were predictable to the point of being almost intuitively obvious. He was extremely anti-Semite, and while superficially a…Continue
“Are you willing to request that the White House direct the FBI to investigate the current allegations against you?”
I hadn’t watched most of the hearings that were conducted Thursday, with Christine Blasey Ford and Brett Kavanaugh as primary witnesses. I figured that I’d catch the evening news and hear the wrap-up at that time, but when I dialed up CBS at 6:30 PM Thursday, I was confronted with the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, still in full swing. Senators Feinstein,…
Apparently the Trump administration is so utterly in the pocket of the Religious Reich that they feel as though they can implement policies which are so blatantly bigoted that they beggar belief. That to me is how I feel about the Religious Liberty Task Force which was unveiled this past Monday, 30 July, 2018, by Jeff Sessions. Their intention is apparently to assist in justifying discrimination by Christians, which they see as being motivated by their faith. Not only does this fly in the…Continue
The biggest problem religion faces in hawking its wares is that its primary product – god – is unavailable for examination, mostly because it doesn’t exist. Yet religions continue to insist with zealous ferocity that their god is out there and that it must be acknowledged, worshipped, and obeyed. As a primary result of this, the game of religion necessarily becomes a shell game, which has its deity hidden behind mysteries and obtuse dogma and holy books which require interpretation for…Continue