Halloween Scary Phantoms and Phantom Scares
October 31, 2019 by

Today is Halloween, and amid the make-believe witches, ghouls, and goblins, there are supposedly real-life villains who hope to harm children every October 31. News reports and scary stories on social media leave many parents concerned about protecting children from Halloween threats. But are they real or myth? Here are five scary myths and legends …

Intuition Nearly Kills Hiker
July 19, 2019 by

On May 9, 2019 yoga instructor Amanda Eller vanished while on a solo run through a forest reserve in Hawaii. She was found seventeen days after her disappearance; the temperate climate helped her to survive, and she told a harrowing tale of eating berries and drinking river water. The trouble began early, when Eller chose …

‘Bring Back Our Girls’ At 5: Boko Haram’s Forgotten Captives
July 3, 2019 by

It was a bold and brash attack on innocent girls that outraged the world and spawned unprecedented online activism: Boko Haram, an extremist Muslim group in Nigeria, abducted about 276 schoolgirls from a rural secondary school in the town of Chibok on April 14, 2014. Since that time about half have been recovered, and over …

Justice Alito Declares War on the Nones
June 26, 2019 by

Last week, the Supreme Court issued its opinion in the big church-state separation case of this session, American Legion v. American Humanist Association, the Bladensburg Peace Cross case. It’s not my intention to relitigate the case, or even analyze the ruling in too much detail. Suffice it to say we are now living in a …

Ham’s Sham
June 17, 2019 by

How can you honestly expect the atheist community to get behind your project when the building and structure of your ark is so vastly different from Noah’s ark? Noah could follow simple instructions. Why wouldn’t you heed God’s word?

What you did is like doing Civil War reenactments with assault rifles and Kevlar jackets. Or depicting Galileo looking at the moons of Jupiter with a 14” Celestron telescope. The Ark Encounter is so inaccurate we simply can’t take it seriously.

A Look at Aladdin’s Genie—and Its Jinn Origins
May 24, 2019 by

With the much-hyped release of the new version of Disney’s Aladdin, I thought it would be interesting to take a brief folkloric look at genies and jinn. Jinn (or djinn) refers to creatures that appeared in medieval Arabic folklore; they were usually depicted as threatening and free-willed—so dangerous in fact that rituals and amulets are …

Good Friday for Atheists
April 19, 2019 by

Just because I don’t share religious beliefs with someone doesn’t mean I think that they should be harmed in any way. Quite to the contrary. If you feel the need to kill people because of a difference of opinion, you’ve lost the argument. Validity of beliefs should rest on the merits of the arguments, not the size of the spear.

With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility: The Myth of Parental Rights
March 14, 2019 by

Timeo Danaos et dona ferentes. Virgil, The Aeneid (II, 49) I fear the Greeks, even those bearing gifts. Also, in a less literary vein – a crap sandwich on the tastiest bread is still a crap sandwich. When our opponents present us with something, whatever they call it and however they present it, we are …

Of Monuments, Christian and Confederate
March 11, 2019 by

At first glance, a 40-foot cross in a traffic circle may not have that much in common with an over 60-foot statue of Robert E. Lee in a traffic circle, but they do—I mean other than their obstructing the free flow of traffic. There are significant similarities between the recent arguments over the removal or …

Don’t Cross Us
March 7, 2019 by

But noooooo. People – even those in our supposed-to-be secular government – are constantly trying to foist their particular religion on the rest of us – and have been for over 200 years. Placing crosses and 10 Commandments on public property is no different from gang-bangers tagging buildings in their neighborhood or dogs pissing on fire hydrants. It’s simply a form of marking turf and saying we are in charge here.