Category Archives: atheism

Which is worse on a flag: approbation for slavery or for a nonexistent god?

The good news: the Mississippi legislature voted to remove the Confederate flag from its state flag, a symbol that has long and rightfully angered people because it symbolizes the defense of slavery. Mississippi was the last state to have the Stars and Bars on its flag. The bad news: From the Washington Post (click on […]

Ricky Gervais chats with Richard Dawkins

This video was posted a week ago, but shows a conversation that took place last fall. On 3 September 2019, Ricky Gervais was given the 2019 Richard Dawkins Award. The award recognizes individuals who proclaim “the values of secularism and rationalism, upholding scientific truths wherever it may lead.” Gervais received the award during a Center for Inquiry-sponsored ceremony at […]

LA Times publishes atheists’ letters

First, if you haven’t seen Ron Reagan’s video ad on behalf of the Freedom from Religion Foundation, which has now been aired several times on national television, including during CNN’s Democratic debate, have a look. (It’s very short, and yes, he’s Ronald Reagan’s son.) I love the jab of the last bit: “. . . […]

Crowdsourcing answers to an important question from a child

A reader whose name I want to withhold (for obvious reasons) asked me this question. I answered the person, but I also asked if I could put the question up, as one might get better advice from a panoply of answers from readers. The parent said “sure”.  So if you have time, please give your […]

Quote of the month: Bertrand Russell on why we shouldn’t believe in fictions that supposedly make us behave better

Most of you have heard of Russell’s Teapot, the hypothetical but undetectable orbiting object that Bertrand Russell used to show why we shouldn’t believe things for which there is no evidence (i.e., “religion”). But perhaps you don’t know where that simile came from.  While futzing around on the Internet, I came across Russell’s essay “Is […]

New talk by Dawkins on taking courage from Darwinism

Reader Michael called my attention to this 40-minute talk from October’s CSICon in Las Vegas that was posted just this morning by the Center For Inquiry. There are only 150 views so far. First, the YouTube notes: Compare two ways of knowing the world. On the one hand theologians claim that the universe and all […]

Therapist advises atheists to lie to their kids, pretending there’s a god and a heaven

The Wall Street Journal is of course a conservative venue, but this time it’s exceeded even the normal right-wing love of religion. The article below, by psychoanalyst Erica Komisar, is behind a paywall, but I’ll give some quotes. And judicious inquiry might turn up a copy. Komisar’s argument is based on a 2018 study showing […]

An atheist espouses godlessness at HuffPost!

The title has an exclamation mark because I wouldn’t have expected HuffPost to publish a piece by an avowed atheist. In this case the author is Jennifer Furner, and her article is below. I’m presenting it not because there’s anything new in the text, but at the strong negative reaction of some commenters, who criticize […]

David Attenborough: an atheist or an agnostic?

As sometimes happens when one is surfing around on YouTube, I came across two videos of David Attenborough discussing his beliefs in God. Although I don’t have a dog in his fight with belief, I was curious to see whether a man who’s spent his life touting the marvels of naturalism (e.g., evolution) had any […]

Thoughts and prayers: what are they worth?

Everyone knows about the “thoughts and prayers” sent out after tragedies as a quotidian feature of the daily news. And all of us nonbelivers disparage not only the use of prayers (shown in a Templeton-funded study to not have any effect on healing after surgery), but also the uselessness of thoughts—unless conveyed directly to the […]