The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or Pastafarianism, may soon be recognized as an official religion in Poland after a court overturned a 2013 ruling against it.
"Judge Wlodzimierz Kowalczyk said that Tuesday's ruling was taken on formal grounds, as the ministry [of administration]had not given the applicants a two-month extension to submit outstanding documents," Polskie Radio reported.
Kowalczyk said the ministry "had not even indicated that there were such shortcomings" in the original application. The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster has essentially been cleared to apply to be registered as an official religion. more >>
David Silverman, president of American Atheists who graduated from Brandeis in 1988, announced that he is withdrawing his support from Brandeis University and its alumni association because the academic institution rescinded its plans to give an honorary degree to controversial social commentator Ayaan Hirsi Ali.
In an open letter on Facebook explaining his actions and reasoning, Silverman said that although he had fond memories of the activism and classes at Brandeis, he felt this history went contrary to the university's decision against Hirsi Ali.
"Today, that pride is gone as Brandeis has caved to religious intolerance masquerading as political correctness and uninvited a valuable voice in the discussion of religion in public life," wrote Silverman. more >>
Hank Hanegraaff recently commented on blasphemous remarks made by atheist talk show host Bill Maher regarding the story of Noah and the new film based on it.
On his show Real Time Maher called God a "psychopathic mass murderer who gets off by watching babies drown" while discussing the new film.
A caller phoned in to Hanegraaff's Bible Answer Man broadcast to ask his opinion on Maher's comments and the media's failure to report the offense committed by the pundit to religious people. more >>
A Florida atheist accused of attacking his roommate with a butter knife for resembling Jesus is requesting he be represented by an atheist attorney.
Gustav Potthoff, 51, reportedly requested on Tuesday that he be granted an atheist attorney to defend him as he faces aggravated assault with a deadly weapon charges. The accused told a judge in Orange County that he should be allowed to have an atheist attorney because "it's just my human rights and everything else." "I'm allowed to be with someone of my own kind," he added.
The judge told Potthoff that if he would like to request a specific attorney, he'll have to pay for the legal service with his own money. Otherwise, he'll be receiving a public defender. "It's a sacrilegious thing," Potthoff, who is reportedly indigent, replied to the judge, according to The Orlando Sentinel. more >>
A science and wildlife center in San Mateo, Calif., has reportedly removed a disclaimer regarding evolution from one of its exhibit signs after receiving backlash from the online atheist community.
The CuriOdyssey center at Coyote Point recently clarified to atheist blogger Hemant Mehta that it had removed a disclaimer regarding evolution from one of its exhibit signs. Mehta contacted the museum out of concern after seeing a picture of the science museum's sign on Twitter, posted by Adam Rogers, an editor and writer at The Wire.
The science museum sign was advertising an exhibit titled "Animal Connections," where children would have the opportunity to get "up close and personal" with that day's theme animal, "reptiles." The sign also read at the bottom: "This program may discuss the topic of evolution." more >>
Two lawmakers in Minnesota have recently introduced bills that would amend the state statute on civil marriages to allow nonbelievers to legally preside over weddings in the state.
A House version of the bill, known as House File 2966 and titled "Marriage solemnization by atheist and humanist celebrants authorized," was introduced by State Rep. Phyllis Kahn (DFL-Nicolett Island) in March and is currently before the House Civil Law Committee. The bill requests that the wording of current state law be changed to allow atheists and humanists to officiate civil marriages in the state. A Senate version of the bill, SF 2958, was introduced by Minnesota State Sen. John Marty (DFL-Roseville) last week.
Minnesota's current law states that "ministers of any religious denomination … are authorized to solemnize a civil marriage" after they file their credentials with the local county clerk. The new bills would add language to the existing law to allow "any other celebrant," specifically naming atheists or humanists, to do the same. more >>