I went to church on Sunday evening, August 7. This is something an atheist like me rarely does. However, I was eager to attend because Rev. Jeremy Rutledge of Circular Congregational Church in Charleston, South Carolina, where I live, invited me to a special "interfaith and philosophy" service in honor of Pride Week in Charleston. He also asked me to promote the event to other members of my local Secular Humanists of the Lowcountry group.
No, but it might look that way.
In a Wiki-leaked email, Democratic National Committee CFO Brad Marshall appeared to want someone to ask Bernie Sanders if he believed in God, as a way to hurt Bernie's campaign. However, that email was written in May and I asked the question in February, before the South Carolina primary.
America is an exceptional country because our founders wisely established a secular nation whose authority rests with "We the people," not "Thou the deity."
A July 8 article reports that Sen. Larry Grooms, R-Charleston, sent a letter signed by 50 legislators to Berkeley County School Board members, saying the board should be allowed to continue reciting the Lord's Prayer at public meetings. One board member referred to a suggested alternative moment of silence as "a moment of censorship."
There is no such censorship. Our First Amendment guarantees the right of individuals to pray to whomever whenever they please, but our government must not endorse or favor one religion over another, or religion over non-religion.
As an atheist, some people assume I must be anti-religion. Not so. By one measure, I might be the most religious person in America. You see, I have not one, not two, but three different religions: I'm a member of the American Ethical Union, with Ethical Culture Societies; I'm a member of the Society for Humanistic Judaism, with atheist rabbis; and I'm a member of the UU Humanists. All three religions are nontheistic and are active participants in the Secular Coalition for America.
Donald Trump would undoubtedly like a running mate whose views and personality are similar to his. I can't think of a better mate for him than Newt Gingrich, who at times seems Trumpier than Trump.
I was pleased when I heard last year that the President of the Boy Scouts of America, former Defense Secretary Robert Gates, called for an end to the ban on gay leaders. But my brief satisfaction turned to disappointment when I learned his reason...
In "The Last Taboo: Why America Needs Atheism," published in the New Republic in 1996, Wendy Kaminer wrote, "Atheists generate about as much sympathy as pedophiles.
I grew up hearing that it was impolite to discuss in public the three most interesting topics-politics, sex, and religion.
The Civil War started in my hometown of Charleston, South Carolina. At the time, the South called it the "War Between the Confederate States of America and the United States of America," now shortened to the "War Between the States."
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