Category Archives: humanism

Baptist leader tells us that God doesn’t want us to sacrifice the old

Here we have the New York Times once again pandering to religion, publishing an article that says we should help save lives, including the lives of the elderly, not because of humanistic values, but because God says so.  The author, Russell Moore, is described as “the president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern […]

Texas man endows first professorship of secular studies at a public university: UT Austin

You may already know that the country’s first—and still, I think, only—college program in Secular Studies is at Pitzer College in Claremont, California, founded by the estimable sociologist Phil Zuckerman. (You can see the curriculum here.) Well, as the Austin Statesman (should they change it to “Statesperson”?) reported yesterday, The University of Texas at Austin […]

Nicholas Kristof still struggling about whether he’s a Christian; queries evasive evangelical writer

For some reason that I don’t understand, New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof has published column after column in which he asks theologians and other religionists about what they really believe. Do they believe Jesus was resurrected? Did he really perform miracles? As I wrote about his last column in April: For a long time, New […]

The New Yorker praises atheism (sort of)

UPDATE: James Wood has responded politely to this piece in a comment below, which you can find here. ************* The article below (click on screenshot), by New Yorker literary critic and Harvard English professor James Wood, is a review of Martin Hägglund’s new book, This Life: Secular Faith and Spiritual Freedom, but also a paean […]

My article in Quillette: A rebuttal of John Staddon’s claim that secular humanism is a religion

Since I’ve now published in Quillette, I guess I’m not only a member of the Intellectual Dark Web, but also an alt-righter and a white supremacist. Or so the Perpetually Aggrieved might say. At any rate, if you click on the screenshot below, or go here, you’ll see my 1900-word response to John Staddon’s essay, […]

The worst article ever to appear in Quillette: Psychologist declares secular humanism a “religion”

In general I like the articles in Quillette: they’re generally left-wing but also critical of the Left’s excesses—a theme that has led some misguided ideologues to call the site “alt-right.” But this time the editors screwed up by accepting a piece that makes very little sense, and arrives at its conclusion by some risibly tortuous […]

NHS adds first humanist chaplain (and a small rant on accommodationism)

Click on the screenshot below to watch this short 2½-minute video featuring Lindsay van Dijk, the first humanist chaplain to work for the National Health Service in Britain. van Dijik was appointed by a trust, so I’m not sure the NHS actually pays her salary, but that doesn’t matter. What’s good is that she works […]

A smarmy NYT article about atheism and humanism

In the past few months I’ve given two talks—one for the American Humanists and the other for the Freedom From Religion Foundation—on the relationship between atheism, humanism, and social good. I started both talks by asking the audience to raise their hands if they considered themselves humanists. Every hand went up. I then asked how many […]

Can religion answer “The Big Existential Questions”?

Here we have another person blathering on about the limits of science, emitting the usual noises about how science, whatever its value in materially improving our species, can’t answer the Big Questions. This time it’s Nathan Gardels, editor in chief of the WorldPost, a branch of the fluffy Huffington Post, and his piece is “How science is […]

American Humanist meeting: Day 2

I went to one panel yesterday: “Humanism and Humor: Funny Ladies Discuss”, with Margaret Downey as moderator and featuring comedian and author Julia Sweeney and comedian and activist Leighann Lord (she also co-hosted Star Talk with Neil deGrasse Tyson). I thought it might be a rather serious discussion of comedy and its implications for nonbelievers, […]