Posts Tagged ‘ Secularism ’

Dozens of public figures

Apr 20th, 2014 5:52 pm | By

From a comment -

What horrible bullying garbage that is. It’s not a “Christian country”; that’s not a meaningful description, and if it were, the UK still wouldn’t fit it.

Yes, it is.

(Scroll down for Anglican.)

Heads of state government shouldn’t make untrue and coercive statements like that; it others most of the population.

What on earth are you talking about? (Also applies to the “bullying” stuff above?)

I’m not the only one. The Telegraph reports that “Dozens of public figures accuse David Cameron of fostering alienation and division with call to view Britain as a Christian country.”

David Cameron is sowing sectarianism and division by insisting that Britain is still a “Christian country” an alliance of writers,

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(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

Hello Secular Woman

Jun 28th, 2012 12:30 pm | By

Press release:

First National Organization for Atheist Women Mobilizes

Leadership Development Drives Mission

Atlanta, Georgia – June 28, 2012. Secular Woman, Inc. makes its debut today as the first national membership organization dedicated exclusively to advancing the interests of atheist, humanist and other non-religious women. The organization’s stated vision is “a future in which women without supernatural beliefs have the opportunities and resources they need to participate openly and confidently as respected voices of leadership in the secular community and every aspect of American society.”

Secular identity organizations often struggle to attract and retain female members, lending weight to surveys which typically characterize women as more spiritual than men. Secular Woman will offer its members conference travel grants, profiles … Read the rest

(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

It’s still a Christian country

Jun 13th, 2012 10:46 am | By

Cork city councillors don’t want no stinkin’ secularism. Cork city councillors say Ireland is a Christian country so there.

A proposal to scrap a prayer at the start of a local authority meeting sparked an unholy row last night.

Cork’s city councillors voted overwhelmingly against the move after a heated debate.

Socialist Party councillor Mick Barry, an atheist, called for the deletion of a rule governing the order of council business which states that the start of the council’s public meetings should include the recitation of an opening prayer, followed by a brief period of silent reflection.

The prayer reads: “Direct, we beseech thee, O Lord, our actions by thy holy inspirations and carry them on by thy gracious assistance;

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(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

Obama to the rest of us: who cares?

Apr 5th, 2012 12:07 pm | By

Secularism? Separation of church and state? Government should neither help nor hinder any particular religion? Pluralism? Some of us are not Christians? The president is supposed to be the president of all the people? Hello?

Oh fuck off, comes the reply. Obama hosted his third annual Easter prayer breakfast at the White House on Wednesday, and there’s not a god damn thing you can do about it.

Though the president is Christian, surveys have repeatedly shown that as many as one in five Americans believe he is Muslim. His Easter prayer breakfasts have served as a platform for the president to wax theological in familiar surroundings where he appears most comfortable.

Among the guests were Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl;

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(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

We mandate no belief

Feb 28th, 2012 11:19 am | By

Behold – what Ronald Reagan was able to say in 1984.

We in the United States, above all, must remember that lesson [of the Holocaust], for we were founded as a nation of openness to people of all beliefs. And so we must remain. Our very unity has been strengthened by our pluralism. We establish no religion in this country, we command no worship, we mandate no belief, nor will we ever. Church and state are, and must remain, separate. All are free to believe or not believe, all are free to practice a faith or not, and those who believe are free, and should be free, to speak of and act on their belief.

He also says we’re … Read the rest

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Beware the frumious bandersnatch

Feb 18th, 2012 10:13 am | By

Polly Toynbee thinks secularism is not such a terrible idea. She’s not completely persuaded by claims that secularism is ruining all the things.

…the faiths are glad to circle their wagons round [the queen] against the unbelievers. Each has their own divinely revealed unique truth, often provoking mortal conflict, Muslim v Copt, Catholic v Protestant, Hindu v Muslim or Sunni v Shia. But suddenly the believers are united in defence against the secular, willing to suspend the supremacy of their own prophets to agree that any religion, however alien, from elephant god to son of God, is better than none.

They can all feel their victimhood now, facing what Baroness Warsi called a rising tide of “militant secularisation

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(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

Last night in Cranston

Feb 17th, 2012 5:51 pm | By

My brother was at the Cranston school board meeting last night. He told me he thought the day was really won by a great Irish guy named Dan McCarthy

who  got up early in the comment session and said “I went to Catholic schools, where  I said the rosary every day.  I also said it at home, with my father. In fact, I said it today with a dying friend. So I’m a practicing  Catholic.

“On the other hand, my great grandfather came here because he was not allowed to own the land he farmed, in Ireland.  Because he was a Catholic.  In a prod country.

“Don’t appeal.”

He sat down, and the atmosphere in the room changed. The  appeal

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(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

Next up for Cranston

Feb 17th, 2012 9:59 am | By

Steve Ahlquist – Jessica’s uncle – has a plan for what to do next, to benefit Cranston public schools, which he posted at the Facebook group Support the Removal of the Cranston High School West Prayer.

Awhile back, the Cranston school committee cut funding for music at their schools, because of budgetary concerns. In response, a group of concerned parents formed a group called BASICS, which I’ll find a link to soon, with the aim of restoring the programs. Raising money for the City of Cranston or the school committee would not allow them to “learn their lesson” but funding BASICS will put money directly into cut programs. The school committee will still have to pay, but the kids

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(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

“Secularism” in Turkey

Oct 6th, 2011 8:55 am | By

Burak Bekdil explains why Turkish secularism isn’t.

A majority of Turks, Sunni Muslims, overtly or covertly believe that they should be “more equal” than the others because they constitute the majority. They think that it is their natural right to enjoy preferential treatment in terms of governance and law enforcement. Remember how the crowds in Istanbul last year, trying to attack the Israeli consulate, shouted at the police who were trying to prevent bloodshed? “Leave the Jews to us! What kind of Muslims are you?” A simple search will produce thousands of examples of this nature unveiling the conscious or subconscious desire of the Sunni Turk for preferential treatment in public administration.

It’s not unlike the US that way. … Read the rest

(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

Far from being in thrall?

Oct 5th, 2011 11:05 am | By

Is secularism really winning in the US?

The US is increasingly portrayed as a hotbed of religious fervour. Yet in the homeland of ostentatiously religious politicians such as Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry, agnostics and atheists are actually part of one of the fastest-growing demographics in the US: the godless. Far from being in thrall to its religious leaders, the US is in fact becoming a more secular country, some experts say. “It has never been better to be a free-thinker or an agnostic in America,” says Annie Laurie Gaylor, co-president of the FFRF.

Well, it depends on what you mean by “in thrall” and “fast becoming” and the like. It also depends on what you mean by ”a … Read the rest

(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

The history of dissident thought

Sep 1st, 2011 11:10 am | By

It’s embarrassing and shocking that Michele Bachmann can be a serious candidate for president. The same goes for Rick Perry; the same goes for Mitt Romney; the same goes for Sarah Palin. Susan Jacoby thinks Americans’ ignorance of our history of secularism is part of the problem.

 I am less concerned about whether the American public is unacquainted with secular philosophy than I am about its vast ignorance of the founders’ determination not to establish a Christian government. College courses cannot fill the empty space left by public elementary and secondary schooling in which secularism is considered a dirty word instead of an honorable part of American history.

If Americans were not in dire need of remedial education on

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(This is a syndicated post. Read the original at FreeThoughtBlogs.)

Do women hate god?

Mar 29th, 2011 4:50 pm | By

Kristin Aune brings the good news. She and a colleague surveyed “nearly 1,300 British feminists” and guess what?

The results show that, when compared with the general female population, feminists are much less likely to be religious, but a little more likely to be interested in alternative or non-institutional kinds of spirituality.

That’s a relief, isn’t it? Much less likely to be religious but oh whew, a little more likely to be “spiritual.” At least they’re not all hopelessly atheistic and bad.

[Pat] Robertson was worried that feminism was challenging traditional Christian values – at least, values he considered Christian. Many liberals and feminists, concerned about the rise of fundamentalism and its erosion of women’s rights, conclude similarly that

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Brandish that crucifix

Mar 23rd, 2011 11:37 am | By

Andrew Brown seems to have taken a Michael Ruse pill (may cause drowsiness, perversity of reasoning, tendonitis, irregular heartbeat).

The decision of the European court of Human Rights that Italian schools may continue to display a crucifix in the classroom is obviously a victory for common sense, of which only fanatics would disapprove.

Oh obviously; oh only fanatics, certainly. (What was that about gnu atheist rhetoric and lack of humility again?)

The idea that human rights legislation should be used to prevent children from being exposed to a crucifix is a profoundly totalitarian and superstitious perversion of one of our civilisation’s best inventions.

Well yes, it would be, but that isn’t the idea in question. Oddly enough, nobody was attempting … Read the rest


May 8th, 2010 11:36 am | By

The Sydney Anglican diocese is pissed off because students who have the option are ditching classes in “scripture” to take ethics classes instead. The Sydney Anglican diocese seems to consider this some kind of violation of nature and of its property rights in the children of New South Wales.

The controversial trial of secular ethics classes has ”decimated” Protestant scripture classes in the 10 NSW schools where it has been introduced as an alternative for non-religious children, with the classes losing about 47 per cent of enrolled students.

The figure was calculated by the Sydney Anglican diocese, which is so concerned about the trial that it has created a fund-raising website to ”protect SRE” (special religious education). The website says

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Be Quieters v atheists

Apr 25th, 2010 12:36 pm | By

It reminds me of the old Bugs Bunny line – “Of course you know, this means war.”

This means war. The grotesque punishment meted out to Harry Taylor might as well be an official government announcement that atheists have no rights.

It is a common accusation that the “new” atheists are bullies who gang up on poor innocent bystanders like Mooney and De Dora and other Be Quieters.

Well – not so fast. Let’s pause and consider. Who exactly is bullying whom?

Which is the majoritarian view? Which is the conventional wisdom? Atheism? Hardly. No, the majoritarian conventional wisdom is, at the very least, that religion deserves an almost infinite amount of “respect” and that any atheist who falls short … Read the rest

It’s even more of an outrage than I thought

Apr 25th, 2010 11:47 am | By

Manic street preacher reports that

Mr Taylor seemed like a perfectly rational, intelligent and calm man who wanted to put his point across and was certainly not the “crackpot” that several bloggers, including myself to an extent, had presumed him to be. He was clearly still deeply affected by his horrendous childhood experiences of a strict Catholic upbringing by the Christian Brotherhood and was so distressed by the prospect of receiving a custodial sentence that he had to leave the courtroom midway through the hearing after nearly fainting.

He also quotes the Telegraph with more and even nastier details:

Judge James told him: “Not only have you shown no remorse for what you did but even now you continue to

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The law simply acknowledges

Apr 23rd, 2010 12:39 pm | By

And what business does the Obama administration have appealing the ruling that the “National Prayer Day” is unconstitutional? Yes I know they are under pressure from Fox News, but that’s going to be the case no matter what they do, and they weren’t elected to jump when Fox says jump.

Crabb ruled the government could not use its authority to try to influence when and whether individuals pray, writing: “In this instance, the government has taken sides on a matter that must be left to individual conscience.”…

The administration had argued the law simply acknowledges the role of religion in the United States.

What is that supposed to mean? And how can a law merely “acknowledge” something? And even … Read the rest