Category Archives: religion

Religious exemptions from children’s healthcare. Part 1: preventive and diagnostic procedures

CHILD, which stands for Children’s Healthcare is a Legal Duty, is a great organization founded by Rita Swan, a Christian Scientist whose son, denied medical treatment, died a terrible death from bacterial meningitis—a curable ailment. Horrified at what she and her husband had done, Swan devoted her life to making sure other children don’t go […]

Malcolm Gladwell finds his faith

Over at The New Republic, Isaac Chotiner reports (surprisingly neutrally) on an interview between unlikely twins, the unctuous Malcom Gladwell and the odious Glenn Beck, who met on Beck’s show for a conversation.  As Chotiner reports, Gladwell is flogging his new book, David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants (see the […]

Christian runner drops out of race rather than wear Satan’s number

Codie Thacker, a high-school athlete in Kentucky, dropped out of a regional championship race because she was assigned The Number of the Beast.  When she opened her race envelope, this is what she got (screenshot from the video mentioned below): According to Yahoo News (where you should watch the video about this), Thacker wouldn’t accept […]

Francis Spufford writes the world’s most tedious defense of Christianity in Salon

For some reason Salon has taken to publishing lots of articles that favor religion and criticize New Atheism. These pieces are often dreadful, and I rarely frequent that website any more. (Slate, which retains the patina lent by columnist Christopher Hitchens, is much better.) But Salon has outdone itself this time with perhaps the worst […]

The Atlantic gives the world’s worst advice: study more theology

I’ve spent much of the last several years reading theology of all stripes, from the most fundamentalist version (e.g. Ken Ham), to versions slightly more sophisticated, like William Lane Craig, to the most rarefied and “sophisticated” versions, like those of Karen Armstrong, Alvin Plantinga, and Søren Kierkegaard. Now I admit I’m an atheist and have […]

How religions—and the U.S. government—let children die

I’ve been reading an enlightening but disturbing book:  When Prayer Fails: Faith Healing, Children, and the Law, by Shawn Francis Peters, which details how children of some religious parents are left to suffer and die because the sects of their parents abjure medical care. The parents pray instead of taking their kids to the doctors […]

Women in Saudi Arabia protest driving ban by driving

Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world that forbids women to drive. Even foreign women can’t drive.  This is part of the religiously-based conservatism that pervades that Islamic nation. You might have heard about the biological consequences of driving: about a month ago a prominent Saudi cleric declared that driving while female damages […]

Why was God a stay-at-home?

A tw**t by Secular African, sent by Matthew Cobb: There’s now a new question to supplement the old classic, “Why does God hate amputees?”: “Why does God love the Middle East so much?”

Did Christianity (and other religions) promote the rise of science?

Of course most of you will answer “No way!”, and I do, too, but accommodationists and science-friendly believers make this argument often. Here are a few specimens: “. . . the very notion of physical law is a theological one in the first place, a fact that makes many scientists squirm. Isaac Newton first got […]

French court convicts Scientology of fraud

I just can’t bear to refer to this organization as “The Church of Scientology,” for it doesn’t deserve even that monicker, despite the U.S. government having ruled that this odious organization is indeed a church, entitled to tax exemption and all other privileges of churchiness. But unlike the U.S., France has seen Scientology for what […]

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