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Atheist group says it will donate books to Ga. parks after governor allows ...
ATLANTA — A national atheist group said Monday that it will donate its literature for use in cabins and lodges in Georgia's state parks after the governor's recent decision to allow Bibles there. David Silverman, president of the Cranford, New Jersey ...
What Is the Meaning of Atheist Yoga? Part 3 of My Interview with Anton Drake ... - SBWire (press release)
What Is the Meaning of Atheist Yoga? Part 3 of My Interview with Anton Drake ...
SBWire (press release)
Rev Hird's main point seems to be that yoga isn't suitable for Christians. Since I am an atheist and not a Christian, if I'm honest about this I'd have to say that he, as an Anglican priest, probably knows more about what is or is not suitable for ...
Amanda Marcotte has written an excellent open letter to the Center for Inquiry — it’s measured and reflects the consensus of the 30+ people who packed my hotel room on Saturday night.
Well, there are exceptions. This was Justin Vacula’s response on twitter:
Get out, Amanda, you not welcome here. Take your dogma elsewhere (you too, Ophelia)
This is the same guy who couldn’t get anyone to pay attention to him at the Women In Secularism conference — we had more interesting people to talk to — so he spent his Saturday doing an interview for that misogynist hate site, A Voice For Men.
Who’s supposed to get out again?
It took longer than I thought — I was so worn out from an invigorating and stressful weekend that I didn’t trust myself to drive all the way from the airport to Morris, so I got a cheap motel room and got some sleep before completing the journey. And that means I’ve arrived back just barely in time to switch out of the lampshade on my head and dancin’ shoes to tidy up and swing into professorial action and run some meetings. The blog thing will have to wait a little while as I get some work done.
Atheist group sending books to Georgia state parks
Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog)
American Atheists announced Friday that it will send the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (GADNR) enough popular atheist books to place one in every state park cabin in the state. The atheist books will be placed alongside Gideon Bibles already ...
Georgia orders Bibles back in park cabins; atheist mulls next moveWashington Times
Atheist Books To Be Placed Next To Bibles In Georgia Parks In Response To ...Huffington Post
Atheist group to give Ga. an atheist book for every Bible in state parksDaily Caller
Access North Georgia
all 28 news articles »
Russell Blackford (@Metamagician) made a problematic assertion on twitter (the following paragraph is from four sequential tweets):
Just to be clear. My stance as a pro-feminist man does NOT follow from the fact that I am an atheist. Even if I became a philosophical deist overnight, I would maintain the same stance. Let’s not oversellMere atheism what mere atheism entails. None of which is to deny that actual religions can be used to provide false rationales for some abhorrent views.
That’s a bit of a mess, so let’s unpack it. I find interesting because my pro-feminist stance does follow from the fact that I am an atheist; perhaps we ought to recognize that there is more than one way to be an atheist, something I’ve been saying for a long time, and apparently Blackford and I are very different kinds of atheist.
There are some peculiarities in that statement. There is also more than one way to be a feminist, so announcing that one would still be feminist if they were a “philosophical deist” is both trivial and irrelevant: irrelevant because no one denies that there are religious positions that are compatible with feminism, and trivial because Blackford selected as an alternate a philosophy that’s about as close to atheism as you can get. I think we’d have a very different answer if he had speculated about an overnight conversion to Southern Baptist, or Amish, or conservative Muslim. As he notes at the end, there are religions that would impose abhorrent views that are incompatible with feminism. So about half of his comment is empty noise that contributes nothing to his thesis.
The interesting part is this: that “mere atheism” does not entail feminism. I both agree and disagree.
The agreeable side is that if we assume he means “mere atheism” the simple position that no gods or supernatural forces exist, then it’s true that that does not directly promote feminism. We could have a hypothetical atheism that postulated other, non-divine phenomena that contradicted feminism. For instance, a libertarian atheism that rationalized virtual enslavement of half the population to serve the other half, which just happened to recognize that it was easier to maintain the existing patriarchal framework, rather than going to all the trouble of inverting it. Or we could imagine a scientific atheism on a world with extreme sexual dimorphism, where the female sex was significantly smaller brained than the male sex. Or we could postulate a solipsistic or psychopathic atheism, in which an individual atheist considered members of the complementary sex to be resources to be exploited.
Blackford says he is pro-feminist (and he lives on this planet), so presumably none of the above scenarios apply. So why would an atheist be feminist?
In my case, the absence of a god invalidates all truth claims by revelation and all the traditional authority of holy books. It creates an epistemic gap, which I suppose someone could fill with just about anything: whim, utility, emotional needs, dice-rolling, whatever. I have no idea how Blackford explains cause and reason, but I know how I do: by an acceptance of natural causes which can be examined empirically and by experiment…by science. I also concede that where I can’t apply science in evaluating human motives, I use empathy and the principle of equating another’s condition with my own.
My atheism entails using those methods to resolve ethical decisions, for instance. That’s my toolkit. My atheism has stripped me of the tools of dogma and authoritarianism (and good riddance).
So now my atheism compels me to confront the question of the status of women by evidence and empathy. And what answer do both of those give? That women are my equals. That they share all the attributes of humanity that I have; there is no deficit in the quality of the experience of being a woman vs. being a man. That I cannot make assumptions about the capabilities or desires of a person on the basis of their sex.
This same reasoning applies whether I apply it to sex, to race, to class, or religious belief. My atheism requires me to be egalitarian because the evidence of our common humanity demands it. My reliance on that evidence is not independent of my atheism, but of course people who are not atheists can also share that same appreciation of others; the difference is simply that my form of “mere atheism” which is driven by naturalism means I have no other recourse, no other way of justifying my interpretation of the world.
But then, I don’t need any other mechanism — it seems to me that science and love of my fellow human beings is more than sufficient argument to guide the entirety of my life. And those are necessary axioms that I am compelled to accept by my atheism, even if there could exist alternate axioms that would also fill the gap left by the absence of gods.
It’s just that those alternate axioms, those other atheisms, also make one a jerk.
Atheist literature to be placed in Georgia state park cabins
do not change. Contact Email. Contact Email2. Contact Url. Subscribe to Blog. Remember my Info. In Georgia, books promoting atheism will be placed alongside Gideon Bibles in every state park cabin, if Georgia Governor Nathan Deal stays true to his word.
Georgia Gov. Deal orders Bibles returned to state-owned park
An atheist, Buckner believes that no religious literature should be provided in government-owned lodging, and he presented that concern to management at the Amicalola Falls State Park. Officials told Buckner they would remove the Bibles from all state ...
Amongst the debris left over from last night’s late ruckus in my hotel room, I find in my possession many empty wine and beer bottles, a quarter of a fifth of vodka, one set of mysterious keys and a Shelley Segal CD. Look for me at the conference and I’ll return them to you.
Except for the clutter, the room is surprisingly tidy and undamaged. You atheists really have no idea how to trash a hotel room, do you?
It’s been a strange evening. I had a crowd of people descend on my hotel room after the evening’s events at Women In Secularism and a good day of wonderful and inspiring talks from strong women, and besides just wanting to talk and celebrate, they wanted to complain. These are people who came here for a conference on women’s issues, and they were really annoyed that the head of CFI, Ron Lindsay, chose to use the opening talk of the conference to basically chastise the attendees and instruct them in how to behave, and I’ve had more than one person tell me that they were irate that their introduction to an event that they paid a considerable sum of money was to be greeted by a talk that pandered to people who hated the event, and were volubly complaining on the internet throughout the day about it. The impression they had was that the organization was unhappy to be sponsoring this conference.
That is a weird and impolitic message to send to attendees. It was especially weird to hear that on day one, and then to watch Melody Hensley, the person who did the organizational work to set up the meeting, make fundraising pitches at the evening reception on both days. Melody definitely stands behind the purpose of this event, there’s no doubt about that at all, but we’re simultaneously getting this bizarre vibe that CFI, as represented by Lindsay, does not like this feminist stuff, and would rather that we all went away and the MRAs who are crowing about his talk were here instead.
Who is he supporting? The people who actively invest in this meeting and CFI, or the jerks who lurk on the internet and rage at women all day long with no commitment to any cause besides hatred, and are openly hoping to see the meeting fail?
What has also caused all these people to lose confidence in Lindsay is that today, he posted a complaint against Rebecca Watson, who is here both as a speaker and as a sponsor of attendees here, comparing her to a propagandist for North Korea, and blathering misconceptions about his odd understanding of the idea of privilege and asserting that there is an effort to silence men (he’s very resentful of the idea that men might be expected to be silent long enough to listen to the experience of minorities). Or rather, he’s unhappy with the hyphenated entity Myers-Watson (really, we aren’t married, not even close), because he also posted a tirade against me for stating that shutting up and listening, that is, paying attention to and respecting the experiences of the underprivileged, is an appropriate strategy for learning about and responding to the concerns of people outside your class, sex, and race. Which, I thought, was the goal of this conference.
A lot of people are extraordinarily irritated by this effort by the head of CFI to undermine a CFI-sponsored conference. That’s why this one tired old man was listening to a crowd of annoyed conference attendees packed into his hotel room at 2am complain about mismanagement and loss of confidence in the administration of CFI. Attendees who paid $250 each, plus transportation and hotel costs, to listen to big names in feminism and secularism talk, and who got that plus a director who seemed more interested in appeasing an obsessed gang of manic, moronic anti-feminist spammers who’d been flooding the twitter feed (a strange corruption of the usual use of conference hashtags that I’ve never witnessed before) and countering the purpose of the conference.
I was put in the unusual and awkward position of having to reassure these attendees that CFI really was a great organization (something the head of CFI should have been doing, right?) despite the apparent opposition of the man in charge…a man who had just posted a bitter complaint about me on the web. I had to remind them that the woman who was specifically in charge of this conference, Melody Hensley, was on their side, and supported the cause of women in secularism despite the apparent intransigence of her boss.
I’m only here as an attendee myself, yet here I am having to defend the organization. I have no reputation as a diplomat, yet here I am trying to put out the fires that the CEO of the organization himself has enflamed. What kind of screwed up mess is this?
OK, I give up. I’m going to bed to get a couple of hours of sleep. Let’s hope Ron Lindsay wakes up and realizes he’s just blown up what ought to be a great success for CFI (the speakers here have been phenomenal) and turned it into a colossal PR disaster, and tries to change course. If it’s not too late already.
News & Observer
Book review: Atheist calls for abolishing religion
News & Observer
After eviscerating religion's primitives, Grayling assures us that atheists would never oppress or persecute. As for the godless barbarism of the Nazis and Stalinists, you see, those regimes were atheistic in name only, but in actuality operated as ...
Rebecca Watson has a few things to say about The Silencing of Men at Women in Secularism, and Ron Lindsay’s opening talk. You know, there is a very, very tiny grain of truth to what he said — I’ve been in a few situations this weekend where I’ve felt uncomfortably like an outsider because I’m a man — but the thing is … that’s fair. I should be somewhat marginal here, because this is an event to try and correct the privileges I can usually rely on feeling at other events. So my internal conversation when I’m feeling that way is “OK, that was a bit weird. Shut up. Think about it. Do they have good reason to think that way? Maybe I should consider where they’re coming from more.” My plan is to listen and learn here.
What I think now is that even if Lindsay hadn’t said those objectionable things that so thrilled the Misogyny Brigade, he would have been wrong to speak at this event anyway. He objected to being told to “shut up and listen” and instead asserted his privilege as the head of the organization to lecture at the attendees…but shutting up and listening in this case was exactly what he needed to do, and speaking in the opening session was an extraordinarily impolitic thing to do instead.
It is perfectly legitimate to tell someone to shut up when you’ve heard their voice in a thousand variants many times before, and you need some small space in which to express yourself, too. This conference should be that space for the many who have been shushed.
Atheist Group Sends Books to Georgia State Parks to Place Next to Gideon ...
The American Atheists of Cranford, N.J., announced Friday they will be sending books on atheism to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources to be placed next to Gideon Bibles inside every cabin and lodge at the state's parks. On April 28, Ed Buchner ...
Ask a Pastor: How can I witness to an atheist?
Eastern Arizona Courier
ANSWER: An atheist is someone who denies the existence of God. However, before one can be an atheist and positively assert “there is no God,” he must presumptuously assume for himself the wisdom and omnipresence of God. He must essentially be ...
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Bangladesh Bloggers Face Constant Death Threats Since Government Labeled ...
The term blogger, let alone "atheist" blogger, was barely known in the country before February of this year, when activists took to a busy intersection in Dhaka, demanding that all war criminals from Bangladesh's 1971 battle for independence be hanged.
Tea Party Has New Holy Cause: Converting Known 'Atheist' George Soros!
You can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave. The Tea Party is the absolute worst party in American history. It's just like every sequel — the first one is totally awesome and brings about the creation of a new country, and the second ...
Georgia Governor Orders Bibles Returned to State Parks Following Removal ... - Christian News Network
Christian News Network
Georgia Governor Orders Bibles Returned to State Parks Following Removal ...
Christian News Network
Ed Buchner, 67, the former leader of the organization American Atheists, expressed his disapproval last month after finding a Gideon's Bible in a cabin at one of the state parks. He said that he believed the Bibles violated the Establishment Clause of ...
Bibles found in Georgia owned cabin angers atheist, State on firm legal groundExaminer.com
Church/state issue? Atheist objects to finding Bible in national park lodging ...God Discussion (blog)
Friday's Religion News Roundup: Georgia Bibles * AARP's homosexual agenda ...Religion News Service
all 5 news articles »
Atheist group happy with both Markey, Gomez
The coalition includes the American Humanist Association, American Atheists, the Council for Secular Humanism and the Atheist Alliance of America. The candidates were rated for their positions on separation of church and state, public funding for ...
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