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Why More Millennials Are Atheists

Morgan Spurlock explores religion and millennials’ growing trend toward atheism. For more, tune in Sunday, 10pm EST. [Read more]

Massachusetts Court Rules That Pledge of Allegiance’s Use of “God” Doesn’t Discriminate Against Atheists

screen-shot-2014-05-09-at-2-17-55-pm[1]In the U.S., many school classrooms, particularly those harboring younger kids, recite the Pledge of Allegiance, an official government “creed,” every morning. (I did this for many years.) You’re supposed to stand, face the flag, and put your hand over your heart, and say the words in the box below. The pledge has gone through a lot of changes, including the addition of the word “God” in 1954 to distinguish our proudly religious nation from the Godless Communists during the Cold War. [Read more]

Madalyn Murray O’Hair and School Prayer Myth

MythAn atheist, Madalyn Murray O’Hair, removed God, the Bible and prayer from public schools. ResponseAn outspoken atheist, Madalyn Murray O’Hair has long been an object of hatred and fear for the Religious Right. [Read more] 

Nigerian Kidnapped Schoolgirls Likely Raped; Face Life of Sexual Slavery If Not Rescued, Human Rights Group Says

boko-haram[1]The over 270 Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped by Islamic militants Boko Haram have likely been raped and face a life of sexual slavery if not rescued, a human rights group in Africa said. “We can safely assume that the abducted girls have been raped by their captors, if not worse,” said Rona Peligal, deputy director for the Africa Division of Human Rights Watch, according to FoxNews.com. “If they return home, they could be traumatized and stigmatized if they are known to be raped, pregnant or with child from their abductors. What happens if they’re trafficked would likely pale by comparison.” [Read more]

Photos Of The Satanic Statue Being Built For The OK State Capitol Will Cause A Conservative Meltdown

Satanic_Temple_Statue[1]Back in December, the Satanic Temple of New York filed an application to place a statue of their own right next to the Ten Commandments monument currently sitting on the Oklahoma State Capitol grounds. In January, a design of the monument was unveiled. Four months have passed, and we now have pictures of the actual statue being built that will cause conservative Christians to flip their lid. These photos of the Satanic Temple will cause a conservative meltdown. Though it is still a work in-progress, VICE obtained photographs of the anticipated monument. [Read more]

NBA Teams Struggle With Religion, Prayer As Sensitive Topic May Unify Or Divide Players

Kevin DurantLong before head coach Doc Rivers found himself defending his Los Angeles Clippers players who were the unwelcome participants in team owner Donald Sterling’s racist comments all week, he was concerned about another sensitive subject: religion. It was late 1999, the start of Rivers’ first season as coach of the Orlando Magic, and he saw a situation in the locker room that he felt needed to be addressed. [Read more]

Are Agnostics Really Atheists Who are Cowards?

agnostics[1]Back in my big B Baptist days, I would ridicule pastors of Bible or Community churches because of their unwillingness to wear the Baptist name. Their doctrine and ecclesiology was Baptist, but they distanced themselves from the baggage that came with the Baptist label. It is not uncommon today to see Southern Baptist churches that make no mention on their sign, website, or literature that they are a Baptist church. Most Evangelical churches are Baptist doctrinally, yet they want nothing to do with the Baptist name. Evidently, the word Baptist is a negative term, associated with things like narrow-mindedness, fundamentalism, judgmentalism, and bigotry. [Read more]

Archbishop Desmond Tutu Awesomely Calls Out Religious Leaders Who Won’t Ordain Women

Desmond TutuAs the Church of England celebrates its 20th anniversary of women ordination as priests, Archbishop Desmond Tutu sent a candid and enthusiastic note of congratulations to female clergy members that concluded with “Yippee!” His note also included a subtle dig at the Church of England, which does not currently ordain women as bishops, though it is expected to do so later this year. [Read more]

How is Technology Changing Spirituality?

TPC_TechnologyChangingSpirituality_bio[1]Videos circulate about the ways friends gather and spend more time on their smartphones than in conversation. Parents grow concerned about the time their children are spending on computers, tablets, and cellphones. Churches are having to ask parishioners to turn off their phones before services begin. We increasingly find ourselves immersed in, and surrounded by, digital networks and technologies. New technologies impact virtually every facet of human life; they are reshaping our basic notions of who we are and how we relate to others. How are religious groups responding to the challenges of the digital era? [Read more]

JesUSAves

You’ve probably heard it said, “There’s no “I” in team.” But did you know there’s no “Jesus Saves” without “USA”? Yeah, me either. But thanks to a heads up from one of my readers, I’m sad to report that this is indeed the case. [Read more]

Creepy Conservative Christian Ritual – Girls Pledging Their Virginity To Their Fathers

5[1]Your father is your boyfriend? Ewwwwww. A new conservative religious ritual, the Purity Ball, is currently observed in 48 out of the 50 states. During this disturbing event, fathers present their daughters with a gold ring to symbolize the girls’ purity and pledge to remain virgins. The group’s interpretation of sexual abstinence holds that girls cannot go on dates, kiss boys or even hold hands until their wedding day. [Read more]

Irony Is Dead – Catholics Demand Exorcism Because of Fears of Superstition

Apparently there has been a 6 day long meeting in Rome about the need for exorcists. Because of an increased need to bust ghosts. The claim is that the decline of religious belief in the West and the growth of secularism has “opened the window” to black magic, Satanism and belief in the occult, the organisers of a conference on exorcism have said. [Read more]

New Fossil Organism Discovered

Plexus-ricei[1]Named Plexus ricei and resembling a curving tube, the organism resided on the Ediacaran seafloor. Plexus ricei individuals ranged in size from 5 to 80 centimeters long and 5 to 20 millimeters wide. Along with the rest of the Ediacara Biota, it evolved around 575 million years ago and disappeared from the fossil record around 540 million years ago, just around the time the Cambrian Explosion of evolutionary history was getting under way. [Read more]

Fox News Devolves from Climate Denial to Rejecting All Science

Screen-Shot-2014-05-09-at-11.51.15-AM-620x412[1]Science is dead, Fox News declares. That may as well be the headline of Jonathan Chait’s epic takedown of Fox panelists George F. Will and Charles Krauthammer who, in the process of dismissing the National Climate Assessment, managed to dismiss all of Western science. Krauthammer’s widely criticized likening of climate science to a “superstition” like “the rain dance of Native Americans” aside, Chait correctly, and quite spectacularly, calls out the “intellectual giants of the right” for entirely abandoning their intellect in a recent All Star Panel appearance. [Read more]

Satanic Prayer Will Open Florida Town Council Meeting If Chaz Stevens Has His Way

Chaz StevensJust three days after the Supreme Court ruled that sectarian legislative prayer was constitutional in Greece v. Galloway, a man in Deerfield Beach, Florida, requested to open a session of the town council or the Florida State Senate with a Satanic prayer, reports 12 News. Chaz Stevens, a Satanist, explained to Raw Story: “I just want equal billing. We allow various religious nutjobs to give a prayer….” [Read more]

Guess Who Got into a Facebook Face-off over Atheism?

sc_seal-296x300[1]While the idea of a face-off on social media might suggest stepping into the middle of a frivolous fracas, a serious issue was raised in a recent Facebook post by South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley in which she accused State Sen. Katrina Shealy of “spreading the lie” that the director of the Department of Social Services, Lillian Koller, is an atheist. Shealy responded on her own Facebook page that she was angry over the governor’s accusation, asserting that she had asked Haley’s staff months ago to confirm or deny rumor about Koller’s alleged atheism. [Read more]

Americans United Says Va. County Board May Not Adopt A Prayer Policy That Discriminates Against Non-Christians

U.S. Supreme Court Ruling That Permits Pre-Meeting Prayer Does Not Authorize Roanoke’s Exclusionary Proposal, Church-State Watchdog Says. [Read Article]

Myth: Atheists and the Atheistic World View Don’t Allow for Forgiveness

MythThe atheistic world view, since it does not allow for sin, does not allow for forgiveness. Revenge is called for. ResponseI’ve encountered many different and unusual myths about atheists and atheism, most of which depend upon making assumptions about atheists without paying attention to who they are or what they do. [Read more]

Debating Evolution is Beneficial

In a recent column, Brian Hicks once again attacked “religious fundamentalists” while extolling scientists who, according to Hicks, all agree with Darwin’s theory of evolution. They don’t, of course. He ridicules the very idea that students might gain from debating arguments for and against Darwinism. [Read more]

On the Historicity of Jesus: What Would You Look Up?

Here’s a request to those keen to see my next book: since I am nearing completion of my subject index for On the Historicity of Jesus (the scripture index is long since finished and submitted), and the publisher wants to release it in June (at that link you can also see the book’s description and a detailed table of contents), it occurred to me that it couldn’t hurt to ask everyone who is interested: what would you look up in the index to such a book? [Read more]

Heard About Brouhaha at Harvard? Thank the Blogs UPDATED

Does Catholic blogging matter? Does it make a difference? That’s more or less the question being debated at the Catholic Herald, UK, in light of the “Protect the Pope Blog” brouhaha, and I was pleased to be able to contribute to the conversation. [Read more]

The Font of Creationist Idiocy Continues to Gush

I will say this for our latest creationist visitor, medic0506: he’s persistent. His foolishness has bloated up another thread to over 1200 comments, so I’m starting the conversation anew with this post. One reason it’s going on and on is that he is full of shit and refuses to recognize that his ideas are ridiculous. [Read more]

Holy Foreskin! Whatever Happened to Jesus’ Foreskin?

The power and popularity of relics in Medieval Europe was dependent upon the saintliness of the original “owner.” The ultimate source of relics, of course, was Jesus himself. But there was just one problem: it is clear in the New Testament that after his resurrection, Jesus was “carried up to Heaven.” [Read more]

I Came Out as an Atheist, and Now My Family Hates Me. Help!

I am a stay-at-home mom who helps out my family by taking care of my niece whenever her parents have to work. This means my niece (6 years old) and my kids (5 and 6) spend a lot of time together. Lately, my niece keeps bringing up Jesus and God. Generally, I try to steer the conversation to a different topic, but she’s starting to become a little more persistent. [Read more]

Court: Texas Cheerleaders’ Bible Signs Not Threatened

A group of Southeast Texas high school cheerleaders is no longer at risk of being kept from displaying banners emblazoned with Bible verses at football games, an appeals court ruled Thursday. The cheerleaders’ school district, which had been sued in the case, hailed the ruling a victory. [Read more]

Keeping Prayer and the Pledge

It was just three years ago that the Bowie County Commissioners Court was in the news regarding the practice of opening their meetings with a prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance. A group calling itself the Freedom From Religion Foundation challenged the practice. The group argues that nonsectarian prayers before government meetings were coercive and unconstitutional. [Read more]

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