North Alabama Freethought Association board member Kelly McCauley will open the Huntsville City Council meeting Thursday in a non-religious invocation after a secularist group threatened to sue the council over its tradition of Christian Prayer.
McCauley, who according to his Meetup page was confirmed in the Lutheran Church and "dropped out" at age 23, told AL.com, "My goal is to offer a non-sectarian invocation that, I hope, will lend gravity to the meeting and point to our civic values."
McCauley was invited by Huntsville leaders to give the body's first atheist "prayer" after secularist group Freedom From Religion Foundation complained about its Christian opening prayers. more >>
In an interview with a Nick Hahn, conservative columnist George Will admitted frankly that he is an atheist.
"An agnostic is someone who is not sure; I'm pretty sure," Will said. "I see no evidence of God." He recalled that his father was also an atheist, having rejected the beliefs of his own Lutheran minister father. Will himself studied religion in college but granted, "I'm an amiable, low-voltage atheist," although his wife and their children are "fierce Presbyterians."
I've enjoyed and admired Will since I was age 11, when I saw him comment on the Gerald Ford/Jimmy Carter 1976 presidential race, and thereafter read his columns religiously. Across 40 years he's remained one of the most insightful minds among U.S. commentators. He's also amiably grumpy, which often signals unbelief in a personal transcendent authority. more >>
A New Jersey high school student and her family have entered the ongoing legal battle over a lawsuit by an atheist group seeking to remove "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance.
Samantha Jones, a senior at Highland Regional High School in Blackwood, and her family filed an official response to a lawsuit by the American Humanist Association.
I went to see Atlas Shrugged Part III the night it opened. The evening led me to reflect on what had attracted me to Ayn Rand as a twenty-something graduate student in economics.
And let it be said: I was very attracted to her ideas. I appreciated how she dramatized the evils of a centrally planned economy. I was persuaded by her depiction of the fast descent of economic control into a totalitarian state.
Most of all, I loved how she said it was ok to be selfish. There it is. The naked truth about the appeal of Ayn Rand. Selfishness and an irrational individualism continues to be a glaring weakness of much of the Right today. more >>
Openly Secular, a non-theist organization, has added two new high-profile members to its coalition and released a new trailer encouraging others to come forward.
Former Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank and former NFL star Chris Kluwe are the most recent high-profile persons to come forward and speak out about discrimination against atheists, agnostics, and humanists.
"It's important for secularists to be vocal about who they are … in a truly functional society, in a stable society, everyone is afforded the same freedom to be who they are no matter what that is as long as it doesn't infringe upon the rights of other people to be who they are," Kluwe said in a video published by the organization's site. "If you want to enjoy your own beliefs, then you have to fight for everyone else's beliefs just as hard, because if you don't, someday you might be on the other side of that line and you're not going to be very happy when that day comes." more >>
The highly anticipated Satanic "black mass" that was held Sunday night at an Oklahoma City civic center drew exponentially more protesters than actual attendees but the service continued as scheduled despite efforts from some protesters to disrupt the event.
As more than 80,000 people signed an online petition that condemned the Dakhma of Angra Mainyu Syndicate event, hundreds of people from many different walks of faith and different areas of the country crowded around the outside of the Oklahoma City Civic Center Music Hall in protest of the event which was created by the group's co-founder Adam Daniels. The event itself only had 43 attendees despite selling 88 tickets for a price of $17.50 per ticket.
Although most of the protesters stayed within their limits and maintained a peaceful display of differing religious and christian views, police had to intervene on several occasions to protect the service from being interrupted, according to a spokesperson for the Oklahoma City Department of Parks and Recreations. more >>