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Rosetta’s Comet Rendezvous

The last few weeks have offered atheists and progressives ample reason to feel discouraged. Down on Earth, anti-rational fundamentalism runs riot, and angry, reactionary conservatism seems stronger than ever. But in spite of all this, in spite of the many obstacles that encircle us and limit us, humanity is accomplishing great things among the stars. [Read More...]

The Internet is Forcing Religious Groups to Address Unsavory Aspects of Their History

There is a sort of online adage I've seen more than a few times, that the Internet is the place that gods go to die. Amanda Marcotte, in a piece republished by Salon, makes the argument that it's at least a way-stop on the road.

SF/F Saturday: The Years of Rice and Salt

I’ve been getting into alternate history novels lately – The Guns of the South by Harry Turtledove, Lest Darkness Fall by L. Sprague de Camp – and one of the better ones I’ve read is Kim Stanley Robinson’s 2002 book The Years of Rice and Salt. I’ve read Robinson’s Mars trilogy, which I thought was [Read More...]

There’s No Reason to Deny This High School Student Her Christian Club

At Wantagh High School in New York, a student says the principal is denying her attempt to form a Christian club:

Atlas Shrugged: Prince of Thieves

Atlas Shrugged, part II, chapter VII Hank Rearden asks Ragnar Danneskjold, the pirate, why he’s chosen a life of violence against society, rather than just disappearing like the vanished industrialists: The shock that came next was to see Danneskjold smile: it was like seeing the first green of spring on the sculptured planes of an [Read More...]

This Video Featuring the Children of Saudi Blogger Punished for “Insulting Islam” Will Bring Tears to Your Eyes

30-year-old Saudi Arabian blogger Raif Badawi was punished last year for starting a progressive website that called for, among other things, religious tolerance and women's rights. That was insulting to Islam, said his critics, and he now faces 10 Years in jail along with 1,000 lashes. Show More Summary

An Atheist Chats with a Young Muslim Woman About Religion… Then Deconstructs the Entire Conversation

Once again, Anthony Magnabosco has made a video in which he speaks to a stranger about his or her religious beliefs for just five minutes -- and then deconstructs the whole conversation afterwards.This time, he spoke with a young Muslim woman:

Friendly Atheist Podcast Episode 29: Jeff Lewis, Illinois Christian Home Educators

Our latest podcast guest is Jeff Lewis, a board member of the Illinois Christian Home Educators (ICHE), a group that promotes faith-based home-schooling and provides a variety of resources to Christian parents who want to do just that. Why chat with him? Because we wanted to have a conversation with someone whose beliefs directly conflict [Read More...]

New Air Force Standards Soften Prohibitions on Proselytizing

Late last week, the U.S. Air Force updated its Standards. Usually, updates make things better, but the changes regarding religious exercise, while superficially sound, leaves much to be desired.Here's what the 2012 version of Standard 2.11 said:

Luke, He Is Your Father

It turns out when Darth Vader spouts Bible verses... he's just as creepy:

A Child Wants to Read the Bible in Class. School Officials Say That’s Fine. So Why the Lawsuit Threat?

I never understand why parents or grandparents (or their lawyers) run to the media the very moment they think they’re being oppressed by a school administrator when a simple phone call would probably clear everything up. At La Costa Heights Elementary School in Carlsbad, California, Craig and Lori Nordal, the grandparents of a fourth grade [Read More...]

Appeals Court Rules Against Atheists, Leaving in Place Tax-Free Housing for Pastors

For years now, the Freedom From Religion Foundation has been in a legal battle to end the "Parsonage Exemption" that allows ministers to deduct the cost of rent for their church-owned houses from their taxable income. FFRF believes that...Show More Summary

A Good Idea? Maryland County Schools Decide To Strike All Religious Holidays From Next Year’s Calendar

Upsetting news: the 2015-2016 official school calendar of Montgomery County, Maryland won't mention National Pasta Day (17 October).Actually, I don't give a damn about that, but Pastafarians might. In theory, and on principle, I'd have to side with their silliness, should it come to pass. Show More Summary

Atheist Soldier Dies, Ten Years After Getting Paralyzed During Iraq War

In a really moving story on CNN this week, we learned about Tomas Young, an Iraq War veteran who was paralyzed during combat.

The Power of Chai Compels You

I guess if you're drinking coffee that's been spiked with the semen of sodomites, you gotta perform an exorcism right outside the Starbucks you're at:

Injunction Filed on Behalf of Second Grader Who Wants to Hand Out Candy Canes with Biblical Messages on Them

About a year ago, 6-year-old Isaiah Martinez (below) went to Merced Elementary School in West Covina, California with a pack of candy canes in hand to give to his classmates. Each candy cane had attached to it a religious message that told the "legend of the candy cane" which, believe it or not, has everything to do with Jesus dying on a cross. Show More Summary

Jehovah’s Witness Governing Body Member Condemns Skinny Jeans and Spanx

And the Lord spoke, and said, "Yea, these are the commandments of the Lord thy God. Keep them holy that you might find favor in his sight."First, thou shalt abstain from wearing the garment called Spanx, for it is immodest, and an offense...Show More Summary

There’s Now a Christian Version of Love Actually

Love Actually is the 2003 British film about a bunch of random characters whose lives intersect (whether they know it or not) and who fall in love with each other... and you know this because you've probably seen it 23940123 times by...Show More Summary

Genitalia Drawings Replaced with Images of Baby Animals in This Turkish Biology Textbook

In the U.S., we have battles over proper sex education.In Turkey, they're having battles when it comes to teaching kids about their own body parts.A psychology expert who once ran a local teachers' union realized that a page in a sixth-grade...Show More Summary

Doctor Who Says Cancer Patients Can “Heal Themselves” Through Diet and Attitude Exposed by CBC

Several months ago, I posted about Makayla Sault (below), an 11-year-old with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. The disease is treatable with two years of tough chemotherapy and has a nearly 90% survival rate... but Makayla no longer wanted...Show More Summary

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