I can’t say I’m surprised that Pope Francis (above) was Time magazine’s Person of the Year. And as an atheist, I’m not particularly disappointed by the decision. While Pope Francis hasn’t changed Church doctrine, he has at least changed its emphasis.
As Americans gather to celebrate Christmas, fewer and fewer actually believe they are celebrating the birth of a divine being who subsequently died and then rose from the dead. But if you look around during the holiday season, that doesn't seem to matter much.
Though most us might be biased, not all biases are created equal. There are degrees of honest biases, and there are clearly dishonest biases. But I’ll be generous and propose that biases are usually honest.
There’s a major problem in any survey of Jews: deciding who is really Jewish, and who gets to decide. Orthodox Jews demand that the mother be Jewish, while more liberal Jewish groups are willing to accept those with a Gentile mother if the father is Jewish.
Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, and Hopalong Cassidy were okay, but unquestionably my favorite TV cowboy in the early 1950s was the Lone Ranger. I’m not sure why I liked him when I was 10, but I now think he was a pretty good role model for atheists.
If you believe Rick Saccone, the Pennsylvania lawmaker sponsoring a bill to erect “In God We Trust” signs in public schools, he doesn’t want to use the apparatus of government to proselytize his Read Post
When I visited Papua New Guinea (PNG) in 1987, and again last month, I saw evidence of many Christian missionaries along with some of the fruits of their labor (both sweet and sour, depending on your point of view). PNG is now one of the most Christian countries in the world.
What do Christian fundamentalists and many atheists have in common? Both read the Bible as if it were meant to be taken literally, and both quote selected passages to buttress their case. Some atheists, for instance, cite biblical passages that justify stoning for heresy, blasphemy, adultery, homosexuality, working on Sabbath, worshipping graven images, and practicing sorcery.