1. Religion & Spirituality
Send to a Friend via Email

Discuss in my forum

Austin Cline

Austin's Atheism Blog June 2004 Archive

By

Follow me on:

Muslim Family Sues Over Pledge of Allegiance

Wednesday June 30, 2004
One of the problems with the required recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance is that those who refrain, no matter what the reason, are treated like second-class citizens. Jehovah’s Witnesses ... Read More

Anti-Abortion Doctor Re-appointed to FDA Panel

Wednesday June 30, 2004
W. David Hager, a Kentucky obstetrician and evangelical Christian who has been an outspoken opponent of abortion, stem-cell research, and so many other modern advances in reproductive medicine will re ... Read More

Anti-Catholic Editorial in Jewish Weekly?

Wednesday June 30, 2004
There has been growing criticism of Catholic bishops and their efforts to influence American elections. Even more interesting, though, are the responses of conservative Catholics to these criticisms - they ... Read More

Pope Expresses “Sorrow” Over Sacking of Constantinople

Wednesday June 30, 2004
Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople, spiritual leader of around 300 million Orthodox Christians, recently visited the Vatican. Pope John Paul II expressed “sorrow” over the sacking of Constantinople in 1204. ... Read More

Beheadings in Saudi Arabia

Wednesday June 30, 2004
The beheading of Paul Johnson by terrorists in Saudi Arabia horrified people around the world. What many may not realize is that beheading is the standard form of capital punishment ... Read More

Sacramental Religions

Wednesday June 30, 2004
A sacramental religion is one which emphasizes or focuses upon the idea that the divine is thought to be present in some fashion in physical objects in the presence of ... Read More

Alan Keyes: American Republic is Ending

Wednesday June 30, 2004
I’ve written once or twice about Alan Keyes. A one-time Reagan administration official, Keyes has an extreme view regarding religion, politics, and the separation of church and state. He honestly ... Read More

Voting for Pro-Choice Politicians Not Sinful

Wednesday June 30, 2004
The debate over whether it is appropriate for Catholic bishops to threaten withholding communion from pro-choice politicians and maybe even those who vote for them has tended to ignore whether ... Read More

This Date in History: Debating Darwinism

Wednesday June 30, 2004
June 30, 1860: Thomas Henry Huxley and Bishop Samuel Wilberforce of the Church of England engaged in their famous debate on Darwin's theory of evolution.

Colorado Court Strikes Down Vouchers

Wednesday June 30, 2004
In Colorado, the state Supreme Court has ruled that a voucher program is unconstitutional because it deprives local school boards the necessary control over education. Colorado’s voucher program was the ... Read More

Judge Ordered to Restore God Reference

Wednesday June 30, 2004
A couple of days ago I wrote about James M. Honeycutt, a district court judge in North Carolina who has insisted on religion-neutral oaths in his court. A complaint was ... Read More

Confronting Irrationalism

Wednesday June 30, 2004
Book of the Day: Sleeping with Extra-Terrestrials: The Rise of Irrationalism and Perils of Piety, by Wendy Kaminer. As many perhaps have already noticed by now, America has a buoyant love ... Read More

Kerry Might Review “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”

Tuesday June 29, 2004
He hasn’t taken a public and definitive position on the issue, but John Kerry has suggested that if he is elected president he would reevaluate the government’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t ... Read More

EPA Lampoons Energy-Saving Cars

Tuesday June 29, 2004
A couple of years ago vice-president Dick Cheney claimed that conservation is a “personal virtue” and shouldn’t be a basis for a national energy policy. Now, the Environmental Protection Agency ... Read More

Pro-Life Democrats

Tuesday June 29, 2004
The debate over giving communion to pro-choice Democrats (there is no debate when it comes to pro-choice Republicans) has raised questions about whether the Democratic Party has room for pro-life ... Read More

Manure Spread on Gay-Pride Parade Route

Tuesday June 29, 2004
A gay pride parade in Conway, Arkansas was supposed to demonstrate that gays live in small towns, not just big cities, but they hit a snag when they found the ... Read More

Vote Ahead for Mt. Soledad Cross

Tuesday June 29, 2004
Not long ago I wrote that an agreement had been reached in the 15-year legal battle over the Mount Soledad in San Diego. The cross was supposed to be removed ... Read More

Salvation Religions

Tuesday June 29, 2004
Salvation religions are typically founded by a prophet or religious leader who creates a basic doctrine which explains to people how salvation might be achieved. The legitimacy and long-term authority ... Read More

Catholic Hierarchy Backs Gay Marriage Ban

Tuesday June 29, 2004
That Catholic leaders in America would oppose legalized gay marriage is no surprise, but it’s still important to note when official statements are released on this matter. Recently, the president ... Read More

End of the Intifada?

Tuesday June 29, 2004
The Palestinian Intifada has been a thorn in the side of the Middle East peace process for years, but there are signs that it might be ending. These years of ... Read More

This Date in History: Martin Luther

Tuesday June 29, 2004
June 29, 1529: Pope Clement VII and Emperor Charles V signed the Peace of Barcelona. Charles received concessions that helped him in his war against France, but in return promised ... Read More

Gay Marriage Would Undermine Church/State Separation?

Tuesday June 29, 2004
When church/state issues are raised in relation to gay marriage, it’s usually to argue that bans on gay marriage serve to enshrine particular religious conceptions of marriage and, therefore, the ... Read More

Nun Settles 50-year-old Abuse Allegations

Tuesday June 29, 2004
Most reports of Catholic religious figures abusing children involve priests, but sometimes they also involve nuns. Recently a woman abused by a non 50 years ago was awarded a large ... Read More

Revisiting Jim Bakker

Tuesday June 29, 2004
Book of the Day: Son of a Preacher Man: My Search for Grace in the Shadow of the Gospel of Prosperity, by Jay Bakker. It seems likely that just about everyone ... Read More

Judge Removed God from Oaths, Complaint Filed

Monday June 28, 2004
A while ago I wrote about Judge James M. Honeycutt, a district court judge in North Carolina who has insisted on religion-neutral oaths to ensure that courts do not evince ... Read More

Government Lottery for Medicare Coverage

Monday June 28, 2004
It sounds like the plot from some awful, dystopian future: the government institutes a lottery for the distribution of government benefits among the poor; if you are one of the ... Read More

Savage: Lesbians Jealous They Don’t Get AIDS

Monday June 28, 2004
Radio host Michael Savage is well known for his hateful and bigoted comments about gays, among other groups, but recently he went even further than usual by saying that lesbians ... Read More

Politics of Hate

Monday June 28, 2004
One of the political issues getting attention recently is the comparison between “Clinton hating” and “Bush hating.” Conservatives who let loose with a lot of invective towards Clinton have in ... Read More

O’Reilly: Female Co-Host is Mere Eye-Candy

Monday June 28, 2004
Bill O'Reilly has a co-host named Lis Wiehl. She’s a law professor, author, and works as a legal analyst for FOX news. As far as O’Reilly is concerned, though, she’s ... Read More

Revealed Religions

Monday June 28, 2004
Also commonly described as Law-giving Religions, the Revealed Religions are those which find their symbolic center in some set of revelations handed down by a god or gods. These revelations ... Read More

Medical Crisis? No, Ethical Crisis

Monday June 28, 2004
The American Medical Association is selling the public and doctors on a phony crisis. According to the A.M.A, 20 state are in a “liability crisis” that is forcing physicians to ... Read More

Question of God

Monday June 28, 2004
Can something as serious as a debate over the existence of God and its consequences for humanity be turned into superficial pap? That may be the case with the new ... Read More

Church Endorses Bush, Gets USD $1 million “Faith-Based” Grant

Monday June 28, 2004
One of the criticisms of President Bush’s “ faith-based ” programs is the manner in which they threaten to politicize churches and religious organizations. Instead of focusing on religious worship ... Read More

This Date in History: Lemon Test

Monday June 28, 2004
June 28, 1971: Decided: Lemon v. Kurtzman The Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the direct government assistance to religious schools was unconstitutional.

Scientists Must Ask Permission to Consult with WHO

Monday June 28, 2004
There’s a new development in the continuing saga of the Bush administration’s efforts to politicize science and warp scientific research to make it compatible with their political agenda: American scientists ... Read More

Importance of Secularism

Monday June 28, 2004
Today secularism is one of the principle boogeymen of the Christian Right and conservative religious believers of various sorts. They complain that secularism is so thoroughly godless that it lacks ... Read More

Religion and Addiction

Monday June 28, 2004
Book of the Day: The Soul of Recovery: Uncovering the Spiritual Dimension in the Treatment of Addictions, by Christopher D. Ringwald. There are millions of people across America who have been ... Read More

Nature Religions

Sunday June 27, 2004
Those systems known as nature religions are often considered among the most primitive of religious beliefs. "Primitive" here is not so much a reference to the complexity of the religious ... Read More

Republican Tactics on Judicial Nominations

Sunday June 27, 2004
For months conservative Republicans complained bitterly about Democratic Senators blocking President Bush’s judicial nominations. It didn’t matter that only a very few were blocked (far more of Clinton’s nominations were ... Read More

Brothel Workers in Iran

Sunday June 27, 2004
In 2003, Iranian delegates to the UN Commission on the Status of Women rejected a draft declaration calling on signatories to “condemn violence against women and refrain from invoking ... Read More

This Date in History: Attempted Assassination

Sunday June 27, 2004
June 27, 1993: In retaliation for an assassination attempt against former American president George Bush, the United States launches air strikes against known bases of the Iraq intelligence service.

Gay Marriage Could Save USD $1 Billion?

Sunday June 27, 2004
We hear a lot about the supposed dangers of gay marriage and how it will undermine society if is it legalized, but what about the possible advantages? A report from ... Read More

End Nears for Branch Davidians?

Sunday June 27, 2004
Most people in America are probably familiar with the Branch Davidians and their stand-off with police in Waco, Texas. After that incident, however, most people probably never gave a second ... Read More

Weekly Quote: Goodman on Quoting Scripture

Sunday June 27, 2004
When the Devil quotes Scriptures, it's not, really, to deceive, but simply that the masses are so ignorant of theology that somebody has to teach them the elementary texts before ... Read More

American Religious Right

Sunday June 27, 2004
Book of the Day: Southern Cross: The Beginnings of the Bible Belt, by Christine Leigh Heyrman. What is the "Bible Belt" and how did it originate? Why is it that the ... Read More

James Madison's Memorial and Remonstrance

Saturday June 26, 2004
Presented here, along with some introductory background material, is Madison's Memorial and Remonstrance - his most decisive and important explanation of his feelings on religious freedom. His Remonstrance is particularly ... Read More

What is Evolution?

Saturday June 26, 2004
Critics of evolution are often very inaccurate (and, apparently, sometimes even dishonest) in how they frame the discussion about evolution and creationism. One of the favorite tactics seems to be ... Read More

Honor Killings in the News

Saturday June 26, 2004
The problem with so-called “honor killings,” where a man kills a female relative in order to restore “honor” to his family because she has transgressed in some fashion, is being ... Read More

This Date in History: Aum Shinrikyo

Saturday June 26, 2004
June 26, 2002: Tomomitsu Niimi, former "home affairs minister" for Aum Shinrikyo (Aum Supreme Truth) was sentenced to death by the Tokyo District Court. Niimi played a key role in ... Read More

The Pledge Isn’t Worth Fighting?

Saturday June 26, 2004
One common criticism of Michael Newdow’s quest to have the phrase “under God” stricken from the official version of the Pledge of Allegiance is that this wasn’t an issue worth ... Read More

Religion and the President

Saturday June 26, 2004
Although it is common wisdom that George W. Bush is a “religious” president and has the support of many “religious” Americans, the fact of the matter is he scares a ... Read More

Evolution vs. Creationism

Saturday June 26, 2004
Book of the Day: Evolution and Creation Species of Origins: America's Search for a Creation Story, by Karl W. Giberson and Donald A. Yerxa. Why is there such rancorous conflict in ... Read More

Muslim Trucker Sues Over Alcohol Load

Friday June 25, 2004
In Tennessee a Muslim truck driver has been fired because he refused to haul a load of beer which, he said, would have been contrary to his religion. He’s filed ... Read More

Catholic University Rejects NAACP Student Group

Friday June 25, 2004
The Catholic University of America, located in Washington, D.C., has refused a student’s request to begin a campus chapter of the NAACP. This has led to charges of racism and ... Read More

Lowering Standards for Belief

Friday June 25, 2004
One of the basic features of Pascal’s Wager is that it asks one to accept a belief on much lower standards than is typically used for accepting other beliefs. Why? ... Read More

Ethics: Universalizable and Internalizable

Friday June 25, 2004
There is an ad hominem fallacy known as “tu quoque” which states that you cannot reject someone’s criticism of you simply because they are doing the same thing. Thus, you ... Read More

Israel and Kurdistan: What's the Connection?

Friday June 25, 2004
It seems as though Israel is losing confidence in America’s ability to establish a democratic and free state in Iraq. According to recent reports, Israel is cultivating a military relationship ... Read More

Christian Identity

Friday June 25, 2004
The Christian Identity movement is perhaps one of the most dangerous theological doctrines in America today. It is made all the more dangerous by the fact that so few people ... Read More

Court Ruling is Flawed

Friday June 25, 2004
More and more people are starting to realize that the means by which the Supreme Court avoided having to rule on the constitutionality of the phrase “under God” in the ... Read More

Is the Problem of God’s Existence Solvable?

Friday June 25, 2004
Some argue that there are problems which simply cannot be rationally solved and, therefore, they can’t properly be called philosophical problems (because philosophy aims at rational solutions to problems). Is ... Read More

This Date in History: Prayer in Public Schools

Friday June 25, 2004
June 25, 1962: Decided: Engel v. Vitale The Supreme Court ruled 7 to 1 that it is unconstitutional for a government agency like a school or government agents like public ... Read More

Protestant Clergy: Too Much Church/State Separation

Friday June 25, 2004
According to research done by LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention, more than three-fourths of all Protestant clergy in America think that the separation of church and state ... Read More

Palestinian Authority Defends Terrorists, Bombers

Friday June 25, 2004
The Palestinian Authority under Chairman Yasser Arafat wants to be seen as an equal partner in the peace process that could, eventually, end hostilities in the region. I doubt that ... Read More

Evolution and Creationism in America

Friday June 25, 2004
Book of the Day: Summer for the Gods: The Scopes Trial and America's Continuing Debate over Science and Religion, by Edward J. Larson. The infamous "Scopes Monkey Trial" occupies a pivotal ... Read More

Pro-Life vs. Sexual & Reproductive Rights

Thursday June 24, 2004
Ever since George W. Bush took office he has been pushing a hard anti-abortion line in international affairs, pulling the United States out of cooperation with other nations or organizations ... Read More

From Saddam to Sodomy

Thursday June 24, 2004
Now that the physical liberation of Iraq from tyranny has been completed, next up should be the sexual liberation of Iraq. Apparently that is what our soldiers have been involved ... Read More

Phil Valentine Out to Lunch on Constitution

Thursday June 24, 2004
It seems inevitable that when someone writes about the recent Supreme Court decision on the Pledge of Allegiance in order to disagree with Michael Newdow they will engage in some ... Read More

L.A. Schools Bar Scientology Anti-Drug Program

Thursday June 24, 2004
A little while ago I wrote about the growing controversy surrounding the introduction of the Narconon anti-drug program to public schools because Narconon is based on Scientology and involves a ... Read More

Atheism: The Root of Our Problems

Thursday June 24, 2004
Prejudice against and misunderstanding of atheism can be found all around the world - it isn’t simply a feature of American’s Christian Right. Wherever you go, you can probably find ... Read More

What if your family tries to re-convert you?

Thursday June 24, 2004
Although this seems to happen more often with young people living at home than adults, atheists of all ages can still face religious families who want you to "return to ... Read More

Jehovah’s Witnesses Still Banned in Russia

Thursday June 24, 2004
Earlier I wrote about a Moscow court’s decision to ban the Jehovah’s Witnesses in that city. Now, an appeals court has upheld that ruling and the six-year battle over their ... Read More

FFRF Sues Over Faith-Based Funding

Thursday June 24, 2004
Dissent from and disagreement over President Bush’s various faith-based initiatives have existed for quite some time, but now the Freedom From Religion Foundation has launched a lawsuit challenging a particular ... Read More

This Date in History: Joseph Smith Arrested

Thursday June 24, 2004
June 24, 1844: Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum were arrested by Illinois authorities. Smith had previously attempted to use the Nauvoo militia to suppress church dissidents and to protect ... Read More

Priests’ Abuse of Kids Goes Back for Centuries

Thursday June 24, 2004
Roman Catholic officials have generally treated priests’ sexual abuse of children as a relatively new phenomenon, at least in the sense of being a major problem. Some have argued that ... Read More

Evangelical Paper Makes Political Shift

Thursday June 24, 2004
Evangelical Christians in America tend to have a very conservative image. There is a strong perception that they are more concerned with things like homosexuality and abortion than social justice ... Read More

Must Church/State Separation Be Forced?

Thursday June 24, 2004
One of the interesting features of the recent debate over the status of the Pledge of Allegiance is how often people end up talking about “force.” It’s OK for force ... Read More

Mysterious Psychic Powers

Thursday June 24, 2004
Book of the Day: Psychology of the Psychic, by David Marks. Does ESP exist? Are some people telepathic? Can your mind by read by someone else? Are there people, for example ... Read More

Relationships for Secularists

Wednesday June 23, 2004
Atheists, agnostics, and freethinkers are very much a minority in America; even worse, because of the distrust of nonbelievers, many are unwilling to publicly express what they really think. How, ... Read More

Does God Value Free Will?

Wednesday June 23, 2004
A common Christian argument in defense of the existence of evil in the world revolves around free will: God values our free will so much that even the existence of ... Read More

Looking at Faith-Based Marriage Counseling

Wednesday June 23, 2004
Among President Bush’s various faith-based ideas for social problems has been the promotion of religious counseling for those considering marriage. The point is supposed to be that pre-marriage counseling leads ... Read More

Growing Chabad Judaism

Wednesday June 23, 2004
Many Jews today are concerned about the rapid and widespread growth of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement. On the one hand, it’s growth has helped Jews around the world through education and ... Read More

Religion Belongs in Pledge?

Wednesday June 23, 2004
Religious and social conservatives are happy that the phrase “under God” will stay in the Pledge of Allegiance, at least for now. They are, however, having some trouble explaining how ... Read More

Religious vs. Secular Weddings: When Couples Disagree

Wednesday June 23, 2004
If two people have very different ideas about the way a wedding should be planned, there will likely be a lot of arguments. Usually these disagreements involve the number of ... Read More

Contraception Ruins Marriage

Wednesday June 23, 2004
I noted a few days ago that Rush Limbaugh is getting divorced. This is posing a bit of a problem for some social and religious conservatives because Rush is “one ... Read More

This Date in History: First Amendment & the States

Wednesday June 23, 2004
June 23, 1997: Governor Fob James of Alabama claimed in a Federal District Court that the religion clauses of the First Amendment do not apply to the states and, hence, ... Read More

Religion in American Politics

Wednesday June 23, 2004
What’s more annoying: the fact that Americans tend to distrust atheist and irreligious people or the fact that when this is noted and commented on, journalists and writers don’t seem ... Read More

Defending the Pledge - Like Any Religious Exercise

Wednesday June 23, 2004
They never seem to realize it, but some defenders of government-endorsed religious exercises sometimes uses arguments for their position that actually make the case for the other side. Why don’t ... Read More

Lessons of Censorship and History

Wednesday June 23, 2004
It is understandable that the government would want to withhold sensitive military information from the public during wartime. After all, what the public learns the enemy will also learn and ... Read More

Science vs. Religion

Wednesday June 23, 2004
Book of the Day: Time Traveling With Science and the Saints, by George A. Erickson. Religion and science seem to be forever in conflict, but is such a perception really accurate? ... Read More

Bush Demands Biblical Marriages

Tuesday June 22, 2004
President Bush has come out strongly in favor of a Constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriages. Why? He seems to think that traditional marriage is threatened by the existence ... Read More

Bush, Abortion, and Dictatorships

Tuesday June 22, 2004
The Bush administration refuses to be associated with any international programs linked to abortion. The “Global Gag Rule,” for example, prohibits foreign NGOs that receive US funds from using even ... Read More

Remembering Mayberry

Tuesday June 22, 2004
Have you ever watched the "Andy Griffith Show"? I have, though not regularly. I’ve seen perhaps three or four episodes. It’s one of those old shows that expresses a lot ... Read More

New Age vs. Skepticism: Clash of Cultures

Tuesday June 22, 2004
One of the problems many skeptics seem to have is that those who are “true believers” have difficulty simply understanding what it means to be skeptical in the first place. ... Read More

Pledge vs. Custody Battles

Tuesday June 22, 2004
When I wrote about the recent Supreme Court decision that Michael Newdow had no standing to challenge his daughter’s recitation of “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance, I quoted ... Read More

Hiding your Atheism: What Do You Do?

Tuesday June 22, 2004
Some atheists are told by their families that they should hide their atheism from friends and neighbors. Although this is a situation which tends to occur more often with young ... Read More

Pakistan Fails to Rein In Schools

Tuesday June 22, 2004
As part of their role in the war on terrorism, Pakistan was supposed to crack down on the schools teaching extremists and violent forms of Islam. It was from these ... Read More

This Date in History: Joseph Smith Flees

Tuesday June 22, 2004
June 22, 1844: Joseph Smith, accused of instigating a riot when Mormons smashed the presses of a newspaper critical of his secret doctrines on polygamy, fled from arrest.

Is Secularism a Religion?

Tuesday June 22, 2004
One common tactic of Christian apologists (the poor ones, at any rate) is to counter atheists’ critiques of religion by arguing that atheism itself is a religion. Thus, atheism is ... Read More

Sneak & Peek: Is Your Home Safe?

Tuesday June 22, 2004
Remember Brandon Mayfield? He was the Oregon lawyer arrested on the charge that he was involved with the Madrid train bombings. He had to be let go because there was no ... Read More

Conservatives and Manuel Miranda

Tuesday June 22, 2004
Do you remember Manuel Miranda? He was the aide to Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist who illegally gathered Democratic Judiciary Committee documents from Senate computers. A federal criminal investigation is ... Read More

How We Treat Outsiders

Tuesday June 22, 2004
Book of the Day: Stigma: How We Treat Outsiders, by Gerhard Falk. We are all familiar with the stigmatization of people in society. Wherever we look, there are those who are ... Read More

Priests Charged with Sex Abuse Hidden Abroad?

Monday June 21, 2004
The American Catholic Church has been struggling with the sexual abuse scandal for a couple of years now and even efforts at reform have been met with suspicion and doubt. ... Read More

Unsupported Premise in the Kalam Cosmological Argument

Monday June 21, 2004
Dr. William Lane Craig‘s “Kalam Cosmological Argument” is one of the more sophisticated and (in some circles) popular arguments for the existence of God. Unfortunately, like so many other theistic ... Read More

Bishops to Decide on Giving Communion

Monday June 21, 2004
There has been a lot of debate recently about whether bishops should give communion to Roman Catholic politicians who vote for laws the bishops oppose. American bishops met recently to ... Read More

Church May Fire Gay Wedded Couples

Monday June 21, 2004
Churches in Massachusetts have been placed in an interesting quandary: if they oppose homosexuality and gay marriage, what do they do if any gay employees decide to marry? Such a ... Read More

C-Word as a “Term of Endearment”

Monday June 21, 2004
People with close relationships often have little terms of endearment for one another. Married couples might call each other “sweetie,” for example, and good friends might have nicknames as well. ... Read More

Weddings for Atheists: Aren't Weddings just Religious Events?

Monday June 21, 2004
There is a common perception that marriage is a fundamentally religious institution - that it is based upon religious values and exists to serve religious ends. Thus, if a person ... Read More

UN Must Listen to Religious Leaders?

Monday June 21, 2004
Should religious leaders play a greater role in official international deliberations simply because they are religious leaders? That’s what the Archbishop of Canterbury thinks. According to Rowan Williams, religious leaders ... Read More

EU Constitution: Godless

Monday June 21, 2004
Members of the European Union have had a lot of difficulty hammering out a Constitution that every nation could accept. One of the sticking points has been a relatively minor ... Read More

This Date in History: Flag Burning & Free Speech

Monday June 21, 2004
June 21, 1989: The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that flag-burning is a right protected by the First Amendment. President Bush asked for a constitutional amendment banning flag-burning, but the ... Read More

Catholics Urge Denial of Communion to Pro-Choice Politicians

Monday June 21, 2004
Conservative Catholics in America are making more noise about their desire to see pro-choice Catholics denied communion. They are, I suppose, getting tired of having to share mass with Catholics ... Read More

Religious Bigotry in Indiana

Monday June 21, 2004
It’s pretty easy to spot the religious bigots: they are the ones who consistently and reliably distort the truth in order to attack those who disagree with their authoritarian religious ... Read More

Religious Violence

Monday June 21, 2004
Book of the Day: Terror in the Mind of God: The Global Rise of Religious Violence, by Mark Juergensmeyer. Religious terrorism is a dark spectre which has been haunting the world ... Read More

Atheism vs. Theism: Why do atheists debate theists?

Sunday June 20, 2004
There is a common perception that there must be "something more" to atheism than simply disbelief in gods because of the fact that atheists are so often engaged in debates ... Read More

John Ashcroft: Worst Attorney General Ever?

Sunday June 20, 2004
Attorney General has been under fierce criticism ever since he was first nominated. His extreme position on so many issues have always bothered a lot of people and it should ... Read More

Bill Kristol on Political Funerals

Sunday June 20, 2004
Remember Paul Wellstone? A lot of political conservatives complained because they felt that his funeral was used for partisan politics. Now that Ronald Reagan has died, it is interesting to ... Read More

This Date in History: Thomas Christians

Sunday June 20, 2004
June 20, 1599: At the Synod of Diamper, the so-called Thomas Christians were reunited with Rome. This native Indian Christian Church was discovered in 1498 by Portuguese explorers and they ... Read More

Medical Malpractice

Sunday June 20, 2004
Doctors would like us to believe that their high medical malpractice insurance rates are the result of outrageous awards from juries. That, however, is not a position that is supported ... Read More

Weekly Quote: Merton on Religion and Poverty

Sunday June 20, 2004
It is easy enough to tell the poor to accept their poverty as God's will when you yourself have warm clothes and plenty of food and medical care and a ... Read More

Abortion Violence

Sunday June 20, 2004
Book of the Day: Targets of Hatred: Anti-Abortion Terrorism, by Patricia Baird-Windle & Eleanor Bader. There are any number of divisive issues which cause problems in American politics, but the worst ... Read More

Going to Church: What if you don't want to, but are forced?

Saturday June 19, 2004
Although this is a situation which affects young people living at home more than adults, atheists of all ages still have to contend with religious families who want you to ... Read More

Problems With Denominational Schools

Saturday June 19, 2004
Can religion and education mix? Just about everywhere you go in the world you can find schools that mix religious and secular education, but there are those who argue that ... Read More

“Saved” Movie Upsets Christian Teens

Saturday June 19, 2004
The recently released movie “Saved!” presents a critical and even satirical look at a high school for evangelical teens. Real evangelical teens are not very amused and are criticizing the ... Read More

This Date in History: Prayers in Public Schools

Saturday June 19, 2004
June 19, 2000: Decided: Santa Fe School District v. Doe The Supreme Court ruled that official, student-led prayers before a school football game violated the separation of church and state.

Pimping the Catholic Church

Saturday June 19, 2004
Quite a few conservative Catholics are practically salivating at the thought of Catholic bishops putting pro-choice Catholic politicians on the spot by requiring them to either stop voting pro-choice or ... Read More

Crusade Against Islam?

Saturday June 19, 2004
Many Muslims in the Middle East regard the American occupation of Iraq to be part of a long-standing Crusade of the West against Islam. Western politicians have been careful to ... Read More

Tony Blair Backing Creationist Schools?

Saturday June 19, 2004
In America creationist beliefs are relatively (and sadly) common, but in other western nations they are relatively rare. That explain why there is so much surprise and criticism over the ... Read More

Language, Culture, and Extinction

Saturday June 19, 2004
Recently Received: Spoken Here: Travels Among Threatened Languages, by Mark Abley. Everyone knows about language - the ability to use language is, in fact, one of the defining characteristics of the ... Read More

Atheism vs. Theism: Who has the burden of proof?

Friday June 18, 2004
The concept of a "burden of proof" is important in debates - whoever has a burden of proof is obligated to "prove" their claims in some fashion. If someone doesn't ... Read More

American Hostage Killed

Friday June 18, 2004
In another blow against the credibility of Islam, Islamic militants in Saudi Arabia have executed American hostage Paul Johnson. In taking this action they are effectively sending a message to ... Read More

Christians Face Horrible Persecution

Friday June 18, 2004
Many Christians in America complain about the awful treatment they have to endure in the modern secular society. According to them, they simply don’t get any respect and are unable ... Read More

Can You Be Commanded to Worship?

Friday June 18, 2004
A great many Christians treat belief in their god to be virtuous while atheism is simply disregarded as vice. Such a position may not, however, be entirely consistent with certain ... Read More

This Date in History: Charles Darwin

Friday June 18, 2004
June 18, 1858: Charles Darwin received a monograph from Alfred Russel Wallace which essentially summarized Darwin's own theories on evolution, thus inspiring him to publish his work sooner than he ... Read More

Misplaced Faith at Catholic Schools

Friday June 18, 2004
There is a debate in Scotland over the status of non-Catholics in Catholic schools. Should only Catholics be able to hold teaching and administrative positions? Some think so and argue ... Read More

Mystical vs. Aesthetic Beliefs

Friday June 18, 2004
What are we to make of mystical experiences? For some, a mystical experience is an immediate and powerful reason to believe in things like gods and angels. Others, however, argue ... Read More

Violence in the Name of Islam

Friday June 18, 2004
There is a conflict among Muslims over the use of violence. Some, obviously, think that violent terrorism should be used to further their theocratic aims. Others deplore such violence and ... Read More

Theism vs. Atheism

Friday June 18, 2004
Recently Received: Atheism and Theism, by John Haldane, J. J. Haldane and J.J.C. Smart. Most of the time, most people don’t give much thought to the debate between atheism and theism. ... Read More

Limbaugh on Divorce

Thursday June 17, 2004
As you may have heard, Rush Limbaugh is getting a divorce. This is interesting because Rush Limbaugh continually moralizes on the radio about the decline of American values - with ... Read More

Free Presbyterians To Save Catholic Priests

Thursday June 17, 2004
The pope may not be the Antichrist anymore, but that doesn’t mean that Catholics aren’t on the way to hell and don’t need to be saved from their own religious ... Read More

George Will Can’t Be Trusted

Thursday June 17, 2004
George Will is one of the most popular political commentators in America today. He doesn’t hide the fact that he favors conservative politicians and causes, but what you won’t hear ... Read More

Jon Bon Jovi Harassed for Supporting Kerry

Thursday June 17, 2004
Jon Bon Jovi’s career in music may not be what it once was, but it can still capture the spotlight when he really wants. Apparently he supports the campaign of ... Read More

Catholic Priest Tells All. And Then Some

Thursday June 17, 2004
We know for a fact that not all Catholic priests remain true to their vows of celibacy. Few priests have been willing to come clean about their behavior to the ... Read More

Going through a Phase: Are you not taken seriously?

Thursday June 17, 2004
Sometimes an atheist hears from family members that they are just "going through a phase." This sort of situation occurs more often with young atheists than with adults - perhaps ... Read More

Clarence Thomas: 18th Century Judge

Thursday June 17, 2004
In my coverage of the recent Supreme Court decision on the Pledge of Allegiance, I noted how Justice Clarence Thomas adopted the rather extreme view that the Establishment Clause only ... Read More

This Date in History: Jan Hus

Thursday June 17, 2004
June 17, 1415: Jan Hus was burned at the stake as a heretic.

Catholics Told to Reject Pro-Gay Candidates

Thursday June 17, 2004
In a new sign that certain Roman Catholics in America are trying to impose their religious doctrines on all of society, a Catholic group in Boston is instructing Catholics to ... Read More

Bush Administration: Unique Moral Failings?

Thursday June 17, 2004
A number of criticisms using superlative language have been leveled against the Bush administration, for example that they are the most corrupt administration in history. There may be some debate ... Read More

Religion and Truth

Thursday June 17, 2004
Recently Received: True Religion, by Graham Ward. For many, secular trends and secular institutions have failed to fully displace religion or religious belief. Instead, a religious revival has occurred around ... Read More

News: Supreme Court Dismissed Pledge Case

Wednesday June 16, 2004
The United States Supreme Court has delivered a decision on Michael Newdow’s challenge to the phrase “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance: they dismissed it on a technicality and ... Read More

Bush Snubs Gay Pride Month

Wednesday June 16, 2004
June is Gay Pride Month, but President Bush has refused to issue a proclamation recognizing it as such. Some groups are planning activities, but not agency officials are able to ... Read More

For-Profit Hospitals: Most Costs, More Deaths

Wednesday June 16, 2004
Some argue that privatization is a good principles because private companies are more efficient and ultimately better than government-run operations. That’s surely true of many industries, but it doesn’t appear ... Read More

U.S. Must Repent

Wednesday June 16, 2004
Many evangelical Christians are, quite simply, paranoid. They believe they can see the handywork of Satan everywhere they turn and they are convinced that the forces of evil are on ... Read More

Evolution as Religious Fundamentalism?

Wednesday June 16, 2004
A couple of common tactics of the Christian Right when attacking evolution are to portray it as a “religion” (thus teaching it violates the separation of church and state, something ... Read More

The Pope is Not the Anti-Christ!

Wednesday June 16, 2004
I know that it’s hard to believe, but a recent news item indicates that the pope may not, in fact, be the Antichrist after all! At least, that’s the word ... Read More

Doubts About Religion: Should you tell your family?

Wednesday June 16, 2004
Questioning a religion you have grown up with and to which your family continues to adhere can be a very difficult thing to face. Contemplating the possibility that you might ... Read More

Ron Reagan on Religion in Politics

Wednesday June 16, 2004
When his father was buried, Ron Reagan made some remarks about the relationship between religion and politics which many believe were thinly veiled criticisms of President Bush. Some also believe ... Read More

Moon Over Washington

Wednesday June 16, 2004
On March 23rd, a group of both Republican and Democratic Congressmen attended a coronation. Of Sun Myung Moon. As the Messiah. In the Dirksen Senate office building. Crazy? You bet ... Read More

This Date in History: Padre Pio

Wednesday June 16, 2004
June 16, 2002: Padre Pio was canonized by Pope John Paul II. A controversial figure in the Catholic Church, Pio was famous for the stigmata he had on his hands ... Read More

Moscow Trial for Blasphemy

Wednesday June 16, 2004
The director of Moscow’s Andrei Sakharov Museum (a human rights museum) has gone on trial because a recent display has outraged leaders of the Russian Orthodox Church. As a result, ... Read More

Vatican to Combat Alternative Religions

Wednesday June 16, 2004
Catholic leaders around the world are growing more and more concerned about the influence of (and competition from) New Age, alterative religious movements. As a result, many have met at ... Read More

Hillary Clinton: Most Godless Senator?

Wednesday June 16, 2004
All too often I see commentators on the right attempt to vilify and attack others by describing them as “godless,” as “atheists,” or otherwise insist that they aren’t “real” believers ... Read More

Faith of Atheism

Wednesday June 16, 2004
Recently Received: I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist, by Norman L. Geisler and Frank Turek. Christian apologists take atheism very seriously - more seriously than they do ... Read More

Threats Against Moore's "Fahrenheit 9-11"

Tuesday June 15, 2004
A lot of conservatives don’t like Michael Moore and they really don’t like the idea of his new movie, Fahrenheit 9-11, becoming popular. Some have even started a movement to ... Read More

Charley Reese: Atheists Are Untrustworthy, Immoral

Tuesday June 15, 2004
Atheists are probably the most distrusted group of people in America today - just about any other sort of person is more likely to get elected to public office than ... Read More

Mobs Attack Theater Over Lesbian Film

Tuesday June 15, 2004
Sometimes, in India, it really doesn’t pay to be different. That’s a message being sent by Hindu extremists as they force a delay in the screening of a film about ... Read More

Having it His Way

Tuesday June 15, 2004
Politics has been described as the art of compromise: in order to effectively run a government, it is necessary for people of different political positions to give in here and ... Read More

Texas Diversity Plan Under Attack

Tuesday June 15, 2004
In order to eliminate affirmative action, but still ensure that poor minorities get a shot at college, Texas adopted a creative plan: the top 10% of all high school graduates ... Read More

Religion's Place in the Public Square

Tuesday June 15, 2004
Quite often, debates about the appropriate relationship between religion and government involved the appropriate place of religion in the so-called "Public Square." This public square might be meant literally, as ... Read More

Economics of White Collar Crime... and Bagels

Tuesday June 15, 2004
Under what conditions are people honest? Paul F., a former economist who left his profession behind to become a bagel seller, has developed some interesting data on that question. He ... Read More

Team Bush On a Crusade?

Tuesday June 15, 2004
The Bush administration is trying to keep close ties to religious groups in the belief that they are the only means by which the election can be won. As a ... Read More

This Date in History: Witchcraft in Massachusetts

Tuesday June 15, 2004
June 15, 1649: Margaret Jones was tried and executed for witchcraft - the first time this happened in the colony of Massachusetts.

Will the Pentagon Begin Spying on Americans?

Tuesday June 15, 2004
Will the Pentagon begin spying on Americans? Military intelligence agencies have had little authority within American borders since the 1970s when Army agents were caught snooping on antiwar protesters. Today, ... Read More

Doctor Proposes Not Treating Malpractice Lawyers, Families

Tuesday June 15, 2004
A lot of doctors are concerned about rising insurance premiums and they would like to see limits on the amounts that can be awarded in malpractice lawsuits, despite the fact ... Read More

America’s Religious Divisions

Tuesday June 15, 2004
There’s a lot of talk about religious divisions in America: Protestant vs. Catholic, Christian vs. Non-Christian, liberal vs. conservative. None of them capture the distinction which probably plays the biggest ... Read More

Whither Atheism?

Tuesday June 15, 2004
Recently Received: The Twilight of Atheism: The Rise and Fall of Disbelief in the Modern World, by Alister McGrath. The influence and importance of atheism have grown over the past few ... Read More

Spanish Bishops Urged Votes Against Secular Parties

Monday June 14, 2004
Prominent clerics in Spain’s Roman Catholic Church urged the faithful against secular parties in Sunday’s European elections. The requests were apparently made in part due to the ringing success of ... Read More

Does President Bush Support Our Troops?

Monday June 14, 2004
We regularly hear about how important it is for us to “support our troops” who are fighting abroad. That is certainly reasonable; however, doesn’t it make even more sense for ... Read More

Iran Rejects Curbs on Nuclear Program

Monday June 14, 2004
Iran has long denied that they have been developing nuclear weapons and have even made noises about accepting United Nations oversight and inspections to insure the truth of this. Now, ... Read More

What Would Jesus Do? Vote Republican!

Monday June 14, 2004
Apparently, Jesus is a registered and card-carrying conservative Republican. At least, that’s what many religious conservatives would like the rest of America to believe because they keep acting as though ... Read More

Bad Influence on Family: What Do You Do?

Monday June 14, 2004
One problem faced by many atheists whose families object to atheism is the idea that you may be a bad influence on others in the family, particularly younger siblings, nieces, ... Read More

Republican Wants “Other Side” of Abuse Story Told

Monday June 14, 2004
Not too long ago I wrote about the San Francisco gallery owner who was physically attacked and whose gallery was vandalized because she showed a painting depicting the abuse of ... Read More

This Date in History: Index of Prohibited Books

Monday June 14, 2004
June 14, 1966: Originally created by Pope Paul IV in 1557, the 'Index of Prohibited Books' was abolished by Pope Paul VI.

Bush Seeks Vatican Help to Get Reelected

Monday June 14, 2004
In a step regarded by many as unprecedented. President Bush has actually asked the Vatican for help in getting re-elected. In 1960 a Catholic candidate assured the American public that ... Read More

Anti-Catholic Bigotry or Political Prudence?

Monday June 14, 2004
Efforts by Roman Catholic leaders to get both politicians and regular voters to more closely adhere to church policy regarding abortion (but not much else) has caused some to become ... Read More

Bushido: The Way of the Armchair Warrior

Monday June 14, 2004
President Bush and his administration have come under a lot of criticism for their handling of... well, for their handling of just about everything when it comes to foreign policy. ... Read More

Morality and God

Monday June 14, 2004
Book of the Day: Can We Be Good Without God?, by Robert Buckman. For much of human history, there has been the perception that morality is largely or wholly dependent upon ... Read More

Defending Female Circumcision

Sunday June 13, 2004
Female Circumcision, often commonly labeled Female Genital Mutilation, is practiced widely in some cultures but banned in most western nations. Are such bans justified? After all, who are western liberals ... Read More

Christians More Likely to Buy Lottery Tickets

Sunday June 13, 2004
Theoretically speaking, Christians are supposed to be opposed to gambling. If that is the case, though, why are Christians more likely to buy lottery tickets than atheists? That’s the data ... Read More

Ronald Reagan, circa 1966

Sunday June 13, 2004
Most people think of Ronald Reagan as president and/or as ex-president - that’s the only context they know him in, outside of perhaps a couple of his old movies. He ... Read More

New Intelligent Design Scam

Sunday June 13, 2004
Creationists want desperately to have some version of their religious beliefs taught in public schools. First raw religious creationism failed. Then so-called “scientific” creationism failed. Recent so-called “Intelligent” Design has ... Read More

Dealing with Upset Family: Confrontation & Reconciliation

Sunday June 13, 2004
Unfortunately, not every family is very accepting of people rejecting their religion; rejecting belief in a god altogether can be even more difficult. You've told your family that you are ... Read More

Newdow Receives USD $1 million Libel Award

Sunday June 13, 2004
In July 2002, Austin Miles wrote a column claiming that Michael Newdow said that his daughter suffered “emotional damage“ from having to recite “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance. ... Read More

This Date in History: Martin Luther Marries

Sunday June 13, 2004
June 13, 1525: Martin Luther married Katherine von Bora, a former nun. Over the course of their 21-year marriage they had six children and Katherine outlived Martin by six years.

Shrek Threatens Family Values

Sunday June 13, 2004
The computer-animated feature film Shrek 2 has become quite popular - but not among a certain segment of far-right Christians who see threats to their religious beliefs under every bed ... Read More

Thinking About Torture is Difficult

Sunday June 13, 2004
With all of the reporting about the torture of Iraqi prisoners, quite a lot of discussion about the morality of torture generally and the treatment of Iraqis specifically has been ... Read More

Weekly Quote: Montesquieu on Religious Wars

Sunday June 13, 2004
History is full of religious wars; but, we must take care to observe, it was not the multiplicity of religions that produced these wars, it was the intolerating spirit which ... Read More

Learning Critical Thinking

Sunday June 13, 2004
Book of the Day: How to Think About Weird Things: Critical Thinking for a New Age, by Theodore Schick, Jr. and Lewis Vaughn. Belief in paranormal, supernatural and mysterious claims are ... Read More

Revealing Atheism: How do you tell your family?

Saturday June 12, 2004
So, you've decided that you cannot rationally or reasonably continue with the religion which you have always been involved in and which your family continues to belong to. Indeed, you ... Read More

Bible-Based Diets Becoming Popular

Saturday June 12, 2004
There are plenty of examples of religions dictating what people should eat - Jewish dietary laws are well-known. Recently, though, a number of authors in America have been promoting “biblical” ... Read More

Discussion: Atheism in India

Saturday June 12, 2004
A forum member writes: It seems that, when the new government of India was sworn in, no less than thirteen Cabinet ministers [out of a total of twenty-nine] chose to ... Read More

Messiah’s Editor Criticizes Soros

Saturday June 12, 2004
Tony Blankley, editorial page editor for the Washington Times, has been very critical of the work of George Soros and has called him a left-wing crank, a pirate capitalist, and ... Read More

This Date in History: Ayodhya and India

Saturday June 12, 2004
June 12, 1992: Thousands of militant Hindus in Ayodhya destroyed a mosque with sledgehammers and their bare hands; local police did little to stop them. It is believed by some ... Read More

Corporate Responsibility

Saturday June 12, 2004
It is said sometimes that the primary or even the only responsibility that a corporation has is to make a profit for owners and/or investors. It is an error to ... Read More

Religious Groups Oppose Federal Marriage Amendment

Saturday June 12, 2004
When a religious group is quoted on the question of gay marriage, most of the time it is a conservative group opposing such unions. There are, however, a number of ... Read More

Archbishop: Engage Nonbelievers

Saturday June 12, 2004
Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, thinks that Christians should do more to engage unbelievers in dialogue. The purpose isn’t to understand nonbelief but, of course, to better convert them. Church ... Read More

Pro-Choice Republicans Given Pass By Bishops

Friday June 11, 2004
Many conservatives and Catholic leaders have assailed Catholic Democrats who oppose the criminalization of abortion. It is interesting, though, that Republicans who are pro-choice don’t receive the same treatment. If ... Read More

Warsaw Bans Gay Pride Events

Friday June 11, 2004
Mayor Lech Kaczynski of Warsaw, Poland, has decided to block all gay price marches in that city. The excuse, apparently, is the fact that anti-gay groups were going to stage ... Read More

UCC Church Breaks Away

Friday June 11, 2004
The United Church of Christ is a relatively liberal denomination of loosely affiliated churches, but they too have their disagreements about the status of homosexuality. Recently, the largest UCC church ... Read More

Anti-Abortion Activist Runs Sham Clinic?

Friday June 11, 2004
William A. Graham, an anti-abortion activist in Louisiana, has been accused of creating the “Causeway Center for Women“ as a means to prevent women from getting abortions. Apparently he advertised ... Read More

O’Reilly Lies About Soros?

Friday June 11, 2004
Conservatives have been driven crazy by the face that George Soros has been providing financial support to the Democratic Party. Some hope to discredit John Kerry through attacks on Soros, ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on Abortion

Friday June 11, 2004
Abortion is one of the most contentious issues in society - there seems little hope in getting the pro-choice and pro-life sides to agree on anything at all. Some people ... Read More

This Date in History: English Reformation

Friday June 11, 2004
June 11, 1509: England's King Henry VIII married Catherine of Aragon. Henry's desire to produce a male heir and his failure to do so with his first wife, Catherine of ... Read More

Maddona: Slut for Kabbalah?

Friday June 11, 2004
Pop singer Maddona has been promoting Kabbalah, a religious movement she recently joined. Unfortunately, not everyone agrees with the value of having her support and association. According to World Net Daily: The ... Read More

Dismissing Black Voters

Friday June 11, 2004
It’s not that unusual to read or hear someone point out that the Democratic Party would be in a lot of trouble if it weren’t for the support of black ... Read More

Brit Hume: Campaign Manager for Bush?

Friday June 11, 2004
Has Brit Hume, chief Washington correspondent and managing editor for FOX News, become a campaign worker or manager for President George W. Bush? Media Matters quotes from the June 2 edition ... Read More

Paul and Christianity

Friday June 11, 2004
Book of the Day: Paul: The Founder of Christianity, by Gerd Lüdemann. Where does Christianity come from? Conventional wisdom ascribes the responsibility for Christianity as a religion to Jesus Christ - ... Read More

Free Speech or Treason?

Thursday June 10, 2004
There are a number of people who attempt to equate free speech with treason. For them, the revelation of misdeeds of the government or even just criticisms of the government ... Read More

New Speciation Observed

Thursday June 10, 2004
One of the favorite arguments of creationists is that the development of new species has never been observed; therefore, the idea that new species could be produced by evolution is ... Read More

Coors vs. Coors Over Gay Marriage

Thursday June 10, 2004
Pete Coors, former chairman of the Coors Brewing Company, is running for the U.S. Senate. His former company, though, it not supporting his candidacy. Pete Coors opposes same-sex marriage and ... Read More

Ten Commandments Monument Declared Historic

Thursday June 10, 2004
In Utah, a federal judge has decided that a Ten Commandments monument is more historic than religious. Therefore, it doesn’t have to be moved from public property. This appears to ... Read More

Costs of the Drug War

Thursday June 10, 2004
What does the drug war cost America? The lives of a lot of good people - they either die or they lose their lives in prison. Is it worth it? ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on Judaism

Thursday June 10, 2004
Judaism is one of the oldest religions still actively followed today. Judaism is basically the "parent" religion of Christianity, Islam, and the many religions which grew out of the two ... Read More

Scientology in Public Schools

Thursday June 10, 2004
Students as young as the third grade are being introduced to Scientology doctrines without even knowing it. How? Via a popular (and free) anti-drug program known as Narconon. Scientology ... Read More

Loving God to Love Country

Thursday June 10, 2004
There are a number of unfortunate and illogical people who believe that America should be a theocracy. According to them, the people can’t be trusted to make their own decisions ... Read More

This Date in History: Salem Witch Trials

Thursday June 10, 2004
June 10, 1692: Bridget Bishop became the first of twenty people executed for witchcraft during the Salem Witch Trials.

Religious Activities at Elementary School Challenged

Thursday June 10, 2004
In Louisiana, the Bossier Parish school board is fighting hard to keep various religious activities included in school activities. The very idea that a government school shouldn’t be involved in ... Read More

Ann Coulter or David Duke?

Thursday June 10, 2004
I’ve written more than once about the antics of Ann "We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity" Coulter. What I didn’t realize, though, is ... Read More

Evil and Humanity

Thursday June 10, 2004
Book of the Day: Becoming Evil: How Ordinary People Commit Genocide and Mass Killing, by James Waller. Humans have committed great evil against other human beings over the course of millennia, ... Read More

Deconstructing Randall Terry

Wednesday June 9, 2004
There are quite a few theocrats in America - theocrats who wish to change the nature of American law so that it adheres to their conception of biblical principles. Some ... Read More

Retaining Our Moral Framework

Wednesday June 9, 2004
Moral questions can be very difficult. Sometimes conflicting moral claims can prevent us from adequately responding in a manner that is fair, just, and proportionate. Unfortunately, we are faced more ... Read More

Libertarian Party or Looney Party?

Wednesday June 9, 2004
Quite a few people distrust the Libertarian Party, considering their views too extreme. They may stand in support of liberty and freedom, but even those principle can be defending in ... Read More

Buddhist Monks Hospitalized After Brawl

Wednesday June 9, 2004
Most people tend to think of Buddhism as an especially peaceful and serene religion. Buddhist monks are commonly thought of as being especially peaceful and serene religious practitioners. It will ... Read More

Atlantis Found?

Wednesday June 9, 2004
The hunt for the fabled city of Atlantis has occupied treasure hunters and historians for centuries. The story of the city has been imbued with all sorts of myths and ... Read More

Removing God from Society

Wednesday June 9, 2004
Part of the problem in the debate over the separation of church and state is that young people simply aren’t taught what it means. Both schools and parents fail in ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on Philosophy

Wednesday June 9, 2004
It isn't easy to say what exactly philosophy is, how to study it, or how to 'do' it. So why has it long been one of the central subjects in ... Read More

Judge Leads Court in Prayer

Wednesday June 9, 2004
In 1984, Senior Orange County Circuit Judge Frederick Pfeiffer was admonished by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals for starting each session with a prayer. For some reason, though, he ... Read More

This Date in History: Division of India

Wednesday June 9, 2004
June 09, 1947: The Muslim League Council accepted a proposal from Great Britain on dividing India into two states, one Hindu and one Muslim.

Federal Judge Backs Fortunetellers

Wednesday June 9, 2004
Tennessee had a law banning the telling of fortunes for a fee, but when challenged they changed it to require that fortunetellers include the disclaimer that the state has regulations ... Read More

Questioning Liberal Indoctrination in Colleges

Wednesday June 9, 2004
A common complaint from conservatives is that colleges and universities in America are overwhelmingly liberal in their orientation. Most liberals and moderates agree with this perspective. Even grating that professors ... Read More

Islam, America, and Terrorism

Wednesday June 9, 2004
Recently Received: Good Muslim, Bad Muslim: America, the Cold War, and the Roots of Terror, by Mahmood Mamdani Many people in the West try to differentiate between “good” Muslims who are ... Read More

Authoritarian Robert Bork

Tuesday June 8, 2004
American conservatives continue to be outraged that Robert Bork was denied a seat on the Supreme Court. They consider his failed nomination to be a landmark event in the so-called ... Read More

Death to Apostates

Tuesday June 8, 2004
People in the West often criticize Islamic laws as barbaric and unsuitable to modern society. Among the many provisions of Shariah that come in for strong criticism is the idea ... Read More

Desert Cross Ruled Unconstitutional

Tuesday June 8, 2004
One federal court has already ruled that a 5-foot-tall cross on federal land in the Mojave Desert cross near the Nevada border is unconstitutional. Now, the 9th Circuit Court of ... Read More

Ban on Pro-Drug Legalization Ads Struck Down

Tuesday June 8, 2004
The federal government has taken a strong position against the legalization of any drugs that are currently illegal, like for example marijuana. The government tried to enforce this position by ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on Religion & Science

Tuesday June 8, 2004
Religion and science are often seen to be in conflict - whether the specific subject is biology, physics, or even social sciences like psychology. To what degree is this perception ... Read More

Protests at Boy Scout National Convention

Tuesday June 8, 2004
The National Convention of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) was in Chicago May 19-21. Even as they dealt with business inside, a number of people protested outside. Although they ... Read More

Gay Marriage Foes Using Churches

Tuesday June 8, 2004
Opponents of gay marriage in Oregon are trying to get a measure on November’s ballot that would authorize an amendment to the state constitution banning such unions. They are falling ... Read More

This Date in History: Muhammad

Tuesday June 8, 2004
June 08, 0632: According to tradition, Muhammad died on this date. His father-in-law, Abu-Bakr, and Umar devised a system to allow Islam to sustain religious and political stability. Accepting the ... Read More

Conservatives Trying to Loosen Rules on Church Politicking

Tuesday June 8, 2004
Quite a few people in America are concerned about the idea of churches participating in partisan political campaigns - endorsing candidates, being transformed into campaign centers, etc. Some conservatives, however, ... Read More

Ban on School Bible Classes Affirmed

Tuesday June 8, 2004
In February, 2002, a federal court ruled that weekly Bible classes in the Rhea County public schools were unconstitutional and now the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld that ... Read More

Peer Pressure: 7 People Can Make you Change Your Mind

Tuesday June 8, 2004
Do you believe what you see? Probably, at least in most cases, but peer pressure on you can be stronger than you think. Just seven other people can get most ... Read More

Paul the Rabbi?

Tuesday June 8, 2004
Recently Received: Rabbi Paul: An Intellectual Biography, by Bruce Chilton Although the religion is supposed to be focused upon the figure of Jesus as Christ, it is obvious to most that ... Read More

When Pseudoscience Kills

Monday June 7, 2004
Quite a few people take comfort in various pseudoscientific beliefs; in fact, one of the defenses of pseudoscience is that it is comforting and doesn’t do any real harm. That, ... Read More

Politics Common in PA Churches

Monday June 7, 2004
I wrote a couple of days ago about efforts by the Bush campaign to get specific churches in Pennsylvania to start participating in partisan campaign activity on behalf of Bush. ... Read More

Shapiro’s Book on Brainwashing “Misconstrues Facts”

Monday June 7, 2004
Ben Shapiro’s recently published book about the liberal bias in American colleges and universities is sure to be a bestseller. It’s worth wondering, however, just how accurate it really is. ... Read More

The Trinity, Subordination, and the Status of Women

Monday June 7, 2004
Evidently, one of the arguments in defense of making women subordinate to men is that this simple reflects the cosmic order, just as Jesus is subordinate to God in the ... Read More

TVs and Phones “Destroying” Irish Society?

Monday June 7, 2004
Archbishop Sean Brady, highest ranking member of the Catholic hierarchy in Ireland, has declared TVs and cell phones to be threats that could tear society apart unless people turn them ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on Ancient Religions

Monday June 7, 2004
The religions we see today didn't pop out of nowhere - they evolved gradually from more ancient faiths which have largely, it not entirely, died away. What are some of ... Read More

Remembering Ronald Reagan

Monday June 7, 2004
We’ll be hearing a lot of praise of Ronald Reagan over the coming days, but that praise should be balanced with some thoughtful critique as well. Contrary to what some ... Read More

Pastor: Single Mother Lawmakers are “Sinners”

Monday June 7, 2004
It’s a basic facet of the social and political agenda of the Christian Right the there are certain god-given “roles” for men and women in society. Men are supposed to ... Read More

This Date in History: Griswold and Contraception

Monday June 7, 2004
June 07, 1965: Decided: Griswold v. Connecticut Connecticut's laws against distribution of contraceptives and contraceptive information to married couples were struck down, with the Supreme Court relying on earlier precedents ... Read More

Texas Taliban Speaks

Monday June 7, 2004
Republicans in Texas have held their convention and drafted their platform, revealing that they have lost none of the extremism they have become known for in recent years. They continue ... Read More

Demonizing Public Schools

Monday June 7, 2004
I wrote before that the Southern Baptist Convention is considering a resolution that would call upon all members of that denomination to pull out of public schools and turn to ... Read More

Imposing Catholic Teachings on the Nation?

Monday June 7, 2004
Critics have argued that Roman Catholic leaders have been stepping over the line by trying to encourage the criminalization of abortion. It is claimed that these religious leaders are simply ... Read More

War, Terrorism, and Free Press

Monday June 7, 2004
Recently Received: Casualty of War: The Bush Administration's Assault on a Free Press, by David Dadge. The cause of "safety" and "national security" have long been used to justify the suppression ... Read More

Priest Defrocked for Abusing Girls

Sunday June 6, 2004
Most cases of priests sexually abusing children involve young boys - but not all. One man has been removed from the priesthood in the Archdiocese of Boston for sexually abusing ... Read More

Ratzinger Critical of Denying Communion to Politicians

Sunday June 6, 2004
A number of American bishops and cardinals have threatened to withhold communion from politicians who refuse to criminalize abortions and even voters who support such politicians. Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, head ... Read More

‘In God We Trust’ License Plate?

Sunday June 6, 2004
In the hopes of generating revenue for the families of deployed North Carolina National Guard members, the state government is looking at creating special license plates that say “In God ... Read More

School Holds Graduation in Church

Sunday June 6, 2004
Is it appropriate for public school students to have their graduation ceremonies in a church? Officials at Lake Zurich High School in Illinois apparently think so. Thus, they will be ... Read More

School to Stop Distributing Bibles

Sunday June 6, 2004
It’s really amazing that any schools today would still think that it is OK to have outside religious groups come in and distribute Bibles to students - but it is ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on the Bible

Sunday June 6, 2004
The Bible is one of the most important, influential and widely read books in Western Civilization. Thus, learning more about it and what it says is helpful in understanding more ... Read More

Prayer Study Flawed and Fraud

Sunday June 6, 2004
There have been a number of studies which purport to demonstrate the effectiveness of prayer in healing people. One popular one, though, was created by people who have been in ... Read More

God and Politics

Sunday June 6, 2004
There are a great many conservatives in America who try to identify their political positions with the will of their God. Essentially, their opinion is that a person can’t be ... Read More

This Date in History: Sikhs in India

Sunday June 6, 2004
June 06, 1984: India's Prime Minister Indira Gandhi authorizes troops to oust Sikh extremists from the Golden Temple at Amritsar; between 600-1,200 people are killed in the assault.

Christian Wants Kidney Back from Hell-Bound Pagan

Sunday June 6, 2004
Most people who donate organs never get to know those who are the eventual recipients. Sometimes, though, they do meet - but what if the donor is disappointed with the ... Read More

Conservative Marriage Model Not World Norm

Sunday June 6, 2004
One of the most important features of the conservative argument against gay marriage, whether religious or secular (sociological) in nature, is the idea that the one man + one woman ... Read More

Weekly Quote: Benjamin Franklin on Church & State

Sunday June 6, 2004
When a religion is good, I conceive it will support itself; and when it does not support itself, and God does not take care to support it so that its ... Read More

Patriarchy and Religion in the Desert

Sunday June 6, 2004
Recently Received: Desert Patriarchy: Mormon and Mennonite Communities in the Chihuahua Valley, by Janet Bennion. There seems to be some connection between patriarchal society/religion and desert communities. The two appeared together ... Read More

Self-Castration in Early Christianity

Saturday June 5, 2004
In the New Testament, Jesus is quoted as saying that his followers should "make themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven.” What did he mean by that? ... Read More

Controversy Over France’s First Gay Wedding

Saturday June 5, 2004
The mayor of the southwestern French town of Begles near Bordeaux plans on defying Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin and moving ahead with France’s first gay wedding. The ceremony won’t be ... Read More

Emotional Component of Ethical Decisions

Saturday June 5, 2004
People tend to think of ethical decisions as being based upon rational considerations and thinking. Sure, there are emotional considerations as well, but most of the literature on ethics revolves ... Read More

Intent and Sexual Harassment

Saturday June 5, 2004
Sexual harassment exists, but can a person unintentionally engage in sexual harassment? It’s true that one can unintentionally insult a person, but harass them? Some codes of conduct assume that ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on Religion, Violence, and Terrorism

Saturday June 5, 2004
Religious leaders normally argue that religion is a force for good and love in the world. Yet, at the same time, we see religion regularly used for war, mass murder, ... Read More

Catholic Senators

Saturday June 5, 2004
Which Senators are the most Catholic? According to conservatives, liberal Democrats are insufficient Catholic to justify even using that label, but a study done by Democratic Senator Dick Durbin of ... Read More

Anti-Porn Pastor Elected in Landslide

Saturday June 5, 2004
A Texas pastor who started a "camera crusade" against sexually-oriented businesses has overwhelmingly won a mayoral election. Jim Norwood photographed the license plates of cars parked in the lots ... Read More

This Date in History: Israel & Egypt

Saturday June 5, 2004
June 05, 1967: Israel launched a preemptive attack on Egypt and other Arab nations. During the six-day conflict, which came to be known as the Six Day War, Israel captured ... Read More

Conservative Episcopalians Uncomfortable with L.A. Bishop

Saturday June 5, 2004
The Rt. Rev. J. Jon Bruno, bishop of the six-county Los Angeles Episcopal Diocese, has blessed a same-sex union between the Rev. Canon Malcolm Boyd and his partner of 20 ... Read More

L.A. Sued for Removing Cross

Saturday June 5, 2004
I wrote a couple of days ago that Los Angeles County had decided not to pursue a legal case defending the image of a cross on their seal which had ... Read More

Understanding New Religions

Saturday June 5, 2004
Recently Received: New Religions: A Guide. New Religious Movements, Sects, and Alternative Spiritualities, edited by Christopher Partridge. Most people are familiar with the "big" religions - Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, ... Read More

The Big Lab Experiment

Friday June 4, 2004
A basic feature of many religious conceptions of the universe is that displays features consistent with something that was created with a purpose. This, they say, is evidence that their ... Read More

Clerk Who Issued Same-Sex Marriage Licenses Loses

Friday June 4, 2004
In February, Victoria Dunlap was the county clerk in Sandoval County, New Mexico, and she issued a number of marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Dunlap stopped after a general issue ... Read More

Atheistic Roots of Hindu Philosophy

Friday June 4, 2004
Religion in India is not like religion in the West. Whereas western religion is preoccupied with God, Indian religion is not - indeed, it is arguable that “God” isn’t a ... Read More

Taoism & Christianity

Friday June 4, 2004
Conservative evangelical Christians often don’t seem to know a great deal about other religions. They may be familiar with some superficial aspects, but they don’t know much about the history, ... Read More

Rev. Lou Sheldon vs. The Homosexual Agenda

Friday June 4, 2004
There are a lot of conservative religious groups that work to oppose things like gay rights. None, however, are quite as active on the question of homosexuality as Lou Sheldon’s ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on Religion

Friday June 4, 2004
Religion is an important aspect of human culture and history - indeed, one can argue that it isn't possible to really understand culture and history without also understanding religion. There ... Read More

Discussion: How Was Nick Berg Really Killed?

Friday June 4, 2004
A forum member writes: There are apparently a number of anomalies in the video of Berg's killing, which suggest - among other things - that Al-Zarqawi might not have been ... Read More

American Cardinal Calls for More Church Control of Society

Friday June 4, 2004
Chicago's archbishop Cardinal Francis George, visiting Rome with other American bishops, has issued a statement to Pope John Paul II and the public which indicates that he thinks more control ... Read More

This Date in History: Wiretaps and Privacy

Friday June 4, 2004
June 04, 1928: Decided: Olmstead v. United States The Supreme Court decided that wire tapping is legal, no matter what the reason or motivation, because it is not expressly prohibited ... Read More

Jews Smuggled Out Of U.S.

Friday June 4, 2004
Jewish immigrants from Yemen have been smuggled out of an ultra-Orthodox township in New York and flown to Israel. Smuggled out of New York? Did someone build a wall around ... Read More

NPR Refuses to Support Intelligent Design

Friday June 4, 2004
On the May 21 edition of National Public Radio’s "Science Friday" program, creationist school teacher Roger DeHart was supposed to appear but was uninvited at the last minute. According to ... Read More

Christians Can't Be Democrats

Friday June 4, 2004
There is an increasingly common attitude among religious conservatives to deny the possibility of someone honestly being religious and being a devout Christian while also holding liberal or progressive political ... Read More

Electing the Next Pope

Friday June 4, 2004
Recently Received: Conclave: The Politics, Personalities, and Process of the Next Papal Election, by John L. Allen, Jr. Pope John Paul II won't live forever, but his current health is poor ... Read More

God Bless America: National Hymn?

Thursday June 3, 2004
Senator Sam Brownback (R-KS) and Representative Gene Green (D-TX) introduced bills in Congress that would make "God Bless America" the "national hymn". National Hymn? Yes, that’s right, they think that ... Read More

Colorado Bishop “Clarifies” Political Remarks

Thursday June 3, 2004
The recent attempt by Bishop Michael J. Sheridan of Colorado Springs to tell Catholics they shouldn’t vote for pro-choice candidates if they want to receive communion has generated a lot ... Read More

Questions About Vegetarianism

Thursday June 3, 2004
There are a lot of reasons why people become vegetarians, with the two primary reasons being health and ethics. Now, if someone refuses to eat meat on ethical grounds, does ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on Culture, Society, Politics

Thursday June 3, 2004
Our culture surrounds us - so much, in fact, that we can readily end up ignoring it, failing to see how it influences us. We may even end up assuming ... Read More

Bush Enlisting Churches for Campaign

Thursday June 3, 2004
President Bush owes conservative evangelicals for winning the last election - without their support, he wouldn’t be where he is now. He knows this and knows that he needs their ... Read More

This Date in History: Religious Displays

Thursday June 3, 2004
June 03, 1989: Decided: County of Allegheny v. ACLU Greater Pittsburgh Chapter The Supreme Court ruled that while a creche display on public property was unconstitutional, a menorah display ... Read More

Novak on Church/State Separation

Thursday June 3, 2004
I’ve written about Michael Novak before - and not very kindly, I must confess. Of course, that’s only because he has in the past been singularly incapable of honestly and ... Read More

More Atheists in Foxholes?

Thursday June 3, 2004
We don’t hear the claim that “there are no atheists in foxholes” quite as much today as before - people seem to have largely given up on it. That’s a ... Read More

Liberty Counsel’s Aggressive Tactics

Thursday June 3, 2004
The Christian Right is not simply a bunch of people sitting around in their living rooms planning the next public protest - they are also lawyers fighting in the courts ... Read More

Extraordinary People

Thursday June 3, 2004
Recently Received: A Passion for Freedom: My Encounters with Extraordinary People, by Leonard R. Sussman. Leonard R. Sussman has led quite an amazing life, traveling all over the world in pursuit ... Read More

Dissent in the Christian Theocracy of South Carolina

Wednesday June 2, 2004
A few days ago I wrote about Christians who want to move to South Carolina, take over, and secede from the United States. Some may have wondered about how much ... Read More

Apocalyptic Prophets in America

Wednesday June 2, 2004
What’s the connection between the politics of President Bush and the apocalyptic beliefs of conservative, evangelical Christians? In truth, the connection is older and deeper than many people may realize. Newsweek ... Read More

Is New York's Water Kosher?

Wednesday June 2, 2004
Jews, especially those how are Orthodox, make every effort to ensure that the food they eat is kosher. Unfortunately for them, New York City tap water may contain tiny creatures ... Read More

Brainwashing on Campus

Wednesday June 2, 2004
Are students on American campuses being brainwashed by liberal professors? Many conservatives seem to think so, which is interesting because if true this doesn’t seem to be decreasing the number ... Read More

Fooled by Stephen J. Gould?

Wednesday June 2, 2004
There are a lot of people who are so blinded by their fundamentalist religious faith that it prevents them from developing coherent ideas about evolution and atheism. This is especially ... Read More

Recently Reviewed Books on Atheism

Wednesday June 2, 2004
Atheism is often misunderstood and sometimes reviled - but it deserves neither. There aren't a great number of books which really do a good job at explaining what it is ... Read More

Christian Bigots May Be Recalled from School Board

Wednesday June 2, 2004
I’ve written before about the Westminster School District in Orange County, California because the school board decided not to amend it’s nondiscrimination policies to include gay or transgendered children. This ... Read More

Faith-Based Official Promotes Culture War

Wednesday June 2, 2004
Jim Towey, director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, has made it clear that President Bush’s effort to get the federal government to fund religious groups ... Read More

This Date in History: English Reformation

Wednesday June 2, 2004
June 02, 1491: King Henry VIII of England was born. Henry's desire to produce a male heir and his failure to do so with his first wife, Catherine of Aragon, would ... Read More

Los Angeles to Remove Cross Image

Wednesday June 2, 2004
The ACLU initiated a case against Los Angeles County because an image of a Christian cross appears in the county’s seal. Many have said that this is a trivial issue ... Read More

New Cases on Childbirth Rights

Wednesday June 2, 2004
Do you remember the woman who was charged with murder because she refused to let doctors perform a Caesarean section on her and one of her twins died? Well, the ... Read More

Goldbergs: All in the Family

Wednesday June 2, 2004
You may have hear or read about National Review Online editor-at-large Jonah Goldberg, a prominent conservative figure who appears regularly in a wide variety media to present a conservative perspective ... Read More

Meaning of Fundamentalism

Wednesday June 2, 2004
Recently Received: Fundamentalism: The Search for Meaning, by Malise Ruthven. During the Cold War, most international conflicts were framed in the context of the United States vs. the Soviet Union. Today, ... Read More

Are you a Disaffected, US-Hating Terrorist?

Tuesday June 1, 2004
Brandon Mayfield was arrested by the FBI in connection to the terrorist train bombings in Madrid because of an erroneous fingerprint identification. He was eventually released and the government has ... Read More

America’s Pop Prophets

Tuesday June 1, 2004
If you aren’t familiar with the Left Behind series of books, you probably should be. They are incredibly popular with the Christian Right (though not anyone else) and serve illustrate ... Read More

Parents Fight for Government-Sponsored Prayer

Tuesday June 1, 2004
Every year there are fights over prayers during graduation ceremonies. Prayers are usually excluded, but there are always parents who believe that prayers which represent their faith and their beliefs ... Read More

Son Sues Father for Religious Discrimination

Tuesday June 1, 2004
Lawsuits over religious discrimination aren’t exactly common, but they aren’t a rarity either. What is rare is for a son to be suing his father over alleged religious discrimination. The ... Read More

Bush Giving Aid and Comfort to the Enemy?

Tuesday June 1, 2004
Much of the campaign to reelect George W. Bush is being based upon his record against terrorism - but how much of his foreign policy ultimately helps the cause of ... Read More

Is Kerry Safe from American Bishops?

Tuesday June 1, 2004
John Kerry has been experiencing some problems with American bishops who argue that politicians who support abortion rights, and perhaps even the citizens who vote for them, should be denied ... Read More

Top Books Reviewed in 2002

Tuesday June 1, 2004
Selected here are ten of the best books reviewed during the year 2002. It was difficult to pick just ten, there were so many good books from the past year, ... Read More

Gay and Muslim

Tuesday June 1, 2004
It’s difficult enough being a gay Christian, but it’s far worse to be a gay Muslims - even if you live in a relatively progressive Western nation. Some have decided ... Read More

Discussion: Super Size Me

Tuesday June 1, 2004
A forum member writes: I just got back from seeing this new documentary film...and boy did it ever make me regret the french fries I'd had with my dinner. ;)  For ... Read More

Metaphysics of Free Will: The Urge to Punish

Tuesday June 1, 2004
There are a lot of people out there who believe in something Daniel Dennett labels “moral levitation:” “Real autonomy, real freedom, requires the chooser be somehow suspended, isolated from the ... Read More

This Date in History: Forced Sterilization

Tuesday June 1, 2004
June 01, 1942: Decided: Skinner v. Oklahoma An Oklahoma law providing for the sterilization of people found to be "habitual criminals" is struck down, based on idea that all people have ... Read More

Fundamentalist Saudi School in Britain

Tuesday June 1, 2004
One of the problems in the global fight against terrorism and Islamic extremism is the fact that Saudi Arabia finances fundamentalist religious schools and community centers all over the world. ... Read More

Boiling Oil Stops Bible Argument Cold

Tuesday June 1, 2004
There was a time when boiling oil was regularly used to try and settle disputes - usually poured over the edge of a wall and onto the heads of angry ... Read More

Copyrighting the Decalogue

Tuesday June 1, 2004
It’s coming up on a year now since Judge Roy Moore’s Ten Commandments fiasco in Alabama, but that doesn’t mean that the story is over. Every so often something new ... Read More

The Vatican During World War II

Tuesday June 1, 2004
Recently Received: Inside the Vatican of Pius XII: The Memoir of an American Diplomat During World War II, by Harold H. Titzman, Jr. World War II was a difficult time for ... Read More

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.