Evolutionary biologist and atheist author Richard Dawkins has revealed in an interview why he doesn't debate people who believe in the Young Earth creation theory, stating that simply engaging them on a platform allows them to get what they want.
"When the debate is with someone like a Young Earth creationist, as the late Stephen Gould pointed out – they've won the moment you agree to have a debate at all. Because what they want is the oxygen of respectability," Dawkins told Seth Andrews of "The Thinking Atheist" in a recently-published interview about his latest book, An Appetite for Wonder.
"They want to be seen on a platform with a real scientist, because that conveys the idea that here is a genuine argument between scientists," Dawkins continued. "They may not win the argument – in fact, they will not win the argument, but it makes it look like there really is an argument to be had." more >>
The Sunday Assembly, an atheist group started in the U.K., is looking to raise close to $800,000 to spread its message through digital platforms and continue expanding on a global basis.
"We are a charity, so we can't give stock options so we have to pay wages," explained Sanderson Jones, one of the group's founders. He told Wired.co.uk that there is "an incredible opportunity to change the world for the better," and pointed to studies that show that the community experience of going to church helps people lead healthier lives.
"If we increase people's social capital by creating real-life communities and supporting networks, then we can increase wealth, without spending loads. It's social capitalism. And we think the best way to create more of these meetings IRL, is to harness the power of networked computers, so that we can get away from networked computers," Jones added. more >>
Former Republican Congressman and outspoken conservative commentator Allen B. West has expressed his disapproval at an Islamic billboard sign campaign.
West posted his thoughts on the group's "Why Islam?" billboard evangelism campaign Saturday on the former Florida congressman's website.
A prominent atheist organization has said that the state of Utah is afraid of the Mormon church after the group had significant trouble having pro-atheist billboards posted in Salt Lake City.
The American Atheists organization recently tried to have three to five billboards posted near Salt Lake City's downtown area to notify residents of the early bird September rates for its upcoming conference, taking place April 17 to 20 at the Salt Lake City's downtown Hilton hotel. Although the organization reportedly called nine locally-based advertising companies to help with the billboards, they only received two call backs.
"What this really communicates to us is the stranglehold that the Mormon church has on the community in Utah," Dave Muscato, the American Atheists public relations director, told The Salt Lake Tribune. "It reminds me of the Mafia in Italy. They don't even have to make threats. People just know that they're supposed to be afraid." more >>
The head of a creationist organization that recently posted several billboards in the United States meant to reach out to atheists has said the response "has exceeded our expectations."
Earlier this month the group Answers in Genesis posted billboards and a digital ad at Times Square that included a link to their websites and the statement "Thank God you're wrong" which was directed at atheists.
Ken Ham, president of Answers in Genesis, told The Christian Post that since the ad campaign began the group has seen a 30 percent increase in viewing traffic for their website and increased social media activity. more >>
A Brazilian atheist has become a believer after turning to God in desperation just before undergoing heart surgery that doctors warned had a one percent chance of survival. Now, he credits God for the miracle of life and no longer rejects God's existence.
Ivan de Oliveira Almeida, 66, was diagnosed with an aortic aneurysm, a condition that occurs when the aorta, the human body's main artery, ruptures causing severe pain and bleeding which can also result in death within minutes to hours. Doctors also found he had an aortic insufficiency dysfunction in his heart's left and right ventricles as well as pleural effusion, an abnormal amount of fluid around the lungs.
Almeida said that while he was undergoing anesthesia, he asked his doctor for a moment in which he cried out to God for the first time in his life. more >>