Martin Rama, World Bank advisor Your Excellencies, Father Vu Dinh Hieu, Bishop of Bui Chu Diocese and Father Vu Van Thien, Archbishop of Hanoi: I am taking the liberty of writing to you despite being neither Vietnamese nor Catholic. I am from Uruguay, a small country half the way around the globe. But for many years I lived in Hanoi and I truly love Vietnam and its people. Also, like many Uruguayans I am an atheist. But I sincerely believe that religious faith, of all sorts, has given us the strong values and the deep sensitivity that connect us all as human beings. Today I am writing to you in the name of those strong values and deep sensitivity. And I am writing to you with a plea, as I believe that you are the only people who can avoid a sad outcome for Vietnam, for the Catholic Church, and for the entire world. The magnificent Bui Chu Cathedral, under your jurisdiction, is scheduled to be torn down in barely two weeks. The destruction of such an extraordinary building comes … [Read more...] about Save Bui Chu Cathedral, from an atheist with love
I’m an atheist and my wife is a Christian church pastor. For the purposes of this series, I call her “RevMo.” When RevMo and I first began dating, I was aware that she believed in Christianity, but there was little emphasis on church going. I soon learned that she had previously tried to become a pastor and gone through Seminary, but it didn’t work out. I was still an angry, young atheist who would often tease her about religion. Eventually she told me that she didn’t appreciate it, so I stopped. It would be several years, a wedding and a move across the country until she began going to church again.She would attend with her mother, and their pastor soon learned that she had her M.Div. (Masters of Divinity degree) and could be a “Pulpit Supply.” This meant that when their pastor was away on a Sunday that RevMo could do the pastoral duties and provide the sermon. After a while, she came home on a Sunday after church and told me she wanted to … [Read more...] about How Does an Atheist Disprove God?
David Silverman has officially been fired from American Atheists. Silverman worked with the organization since 1996 and was president since 2010. He’s often been one of the more recognizable public atheists and has regularly generated national attention with provocative advertisement campaigns.American Atheists released a statement that they were conducting an investigation after “complaints” were made against Silverman. Shortly after, we learned that those complaints were from allegations of sexual assault and financial conflicts and Silverman was let go. Buzzfeed investigated these allegations and found that two women accused Silverman of sexual assault and there were financial conflicts regarding the promotion of his book: Fighting God: An Atheist Manifesto for a Religious World. Additionally, Silverman appointed a woman to a senior position with whom he was allegedly having a sexual relationship with.One of the women accusing Silverman of sexual assault … [Read more...] about David Silverman Officially Fired From American Atheists After Allegations Of Sexual Assault And Financial Conflicts
This post is part of a series on what it’s like to be an atheist in prison. To read other parts in the series, click here. Some of these inmates have done things that, to many of you, will be unforgivable. I will be disclosing some of their names, so you can easily find out what they’ve done to end up in lockup. You may be disgusted to find out their crimes, and you have every right to be. This series, for the most part, will not be about their crimes. I’m interested in painting a picture of what life is like for nonbelievers in the joint. If you find it is too upsetting to be part of giving them a platform, please choose not to read this. You don’t have to be part of it.With that said, I’ve sent each inmate some preliminary questions to get the conversation going. If you find you have questions that arise as you read their responses, please post them in the comments below or email them to me: [email protected] and I will make sure the person gets them. … [Read more...] about Atheist Inmates In Their Own Words: Doing Time In Oregon As An Atheist Pt. 4
I wrote last week about Sam Harris’ feud with Vox and Ezra Klein, and I want to follow up on that. As a reminder, Harris gave a friendly, softball interview to the racist eugenicist Charles Murray, casting him as a persecuted victim of political correctness. When he was criticized for it in an article on Vox, Harris blew up, claiming that the criticism was a “hit job” and a bad-faith attempt to smear his reputation. After several rounds of argument and reply, Harris agreed to have Ezra Klein on his podcast, and the two of them had a long, occasionally tense, but civil conversation. In that conversation, Harris acknowledged, “My fuse is pretty short,” and conceded that he’s been “very quick to attribute malice and bad faith… when it wasn’t warranted”. I thought that that would be the end of it. But it seems Harris just can’t let it go, because in his latest podcast, he went back to angrily denouncing Klein: I was … [Read more...] about Why Are Big-Name Atheists So Bad at Taking Criticism?
Earlier this week I was quoted in a VICE article by Humanist and interfaith activist Chris Stedman which argued that “Too Many Atheists Are Veering Dangerously Toward the Alt-Right.” The article, which suggests that there is a disturbing link between the alt-right and movement atheism, provoked a lot of predictable push-back, including a rather defensive piece on this very network by David McAfee and Hemant Mehta.The tendency, whenever anyone criticizes problems within a movement, is to dismiss those problems as the behavior of “bad actors” (as McAfee and Mehta do in their post), not representative of the movement at large. To some degree, this is fair: the vast majority of atheists, including movement atheists, are not sympathetic to the alt-right. Atheists as a group are not to blame for what the most problematic atheists say or do. Right-thinking people roundly reject the idea that other religious groups bear collective responsibility for their worst … [Read more...] about The Atheist Alt-Right Connection