Hnn | HNN Articles

Meet the AHA Staff: Emma Bates, Director of Outreach

 

Meet Emma Bates, the American Humanist Association’s new Director of Outreach! Emma is a Los Angeles-based actress, having appeared in Crossing Jordan, Without a Trace, CSI:NY, and more. She will appear in an upcoming modern adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing, directed by humanist Joss Whedon.

HNN: How did you first learn about humanism? 

Emma Bates: I started to read all of Richard Dawkins' books. Then moved on to Christopher Hitchens and Sam Harris. Then found PZ Meyer's blog. I think I really learned about critical thinking from these people in a much deeper and specific way than I ever had prior to that. 

HNN: Did you grow up in a religious tradition? What was that like?

Emma Bates: I grew up in a culturally Christian family in Lynchburg, Virginia, which is Jerry Falwell territory. Christianity was a blanket over everything. I never really understood the culture wars until much later though, or why they matter. 

HNN: What interested you most about working for the American Humanist Association?

Emma Bates: Marriage equality was probably the single biggest factor in making me want to play an active role in this movement. I started to realize that the way people rationalize their belief system actually effects how policy is shaped. The injustice of watching friends of mine have their civil liberties stripped propelled me into action. 

HNN: Have you read any good books lately? What's your favorite book?

Emma Bates: Yes! I really enjoyed The Believing Brain by Michael Shermer. Sean Carroll's new book The Particle At the End of The Universe is next on my reading list. Picking a favorite is hard, but The Count of Monte Cristo is probably right up there with A Tree Grows In Brooklyn and A Heartbreaking Work Of Staggering Genius

HNN: If you could have dinner with any three people (living or dead), who would they be?

Emma Bates: These are all people I have had dinner and/or conversations with before, and that is why I would choose to again: Christopher Hitchens, my husband, Josh, and Gloria Steinem. 

blog comments powered by Disqus

American Humanist Association

Portland, Maine, newspaper editorial supports student leaders who want to inform...

1 days ago

American Humanist Association

What are the top three religions in your state?

1 days ago

American Humanist Association

In his latest Huffington Post article, Roy Speckhardt discusses the dangers of p...

1 days ago

American Humanist Association

Why are more and more young women identifying less with religion?

2 days ago

American Humanist Association

Where do the 25 most populous countries stand in terms of their religious restri...

3 days ago

American Humanist Association

We're happy to welcome a new chapter, Humanists of Linn County, to the American...

3 days ago

American Humanist Association

The Humanist Press is proud to announce the release of its latest book, Belief a...

4 days ago

American Humanist Association

Clay Farris Naff sat down with Ryan Bell, the former senior pastor at the Hollyw...

4 days ago

American Humanist Association

The American Humanist Association expresses shock and sorrow over another atheis...

7 days ago

American Humanist Association

Do you ever feel pressured to participate in religious practices simply because...

7 days ago

American Humanist Association

Did Jesus have long hair? Nah. Was he nailed to a cross? Most likely not. The b...

7 days ago

American Humanist Association

Check out the latest trends in Religious Restrictions and Hostilities from the P...

7 days ago

American Humanist Association

Well, this is cool! What if US dollar notes were redesigned to honor science, ra...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

Another great step for humanism! Greg Epstein, Humanist Chaplain at Harvard, has...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

A few days ago, the AHA sent letters to newly elected members of Congress, askin...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

According to Larry King, "I don't believe that I'm going anywhere. I'm not relig...

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

AHA's Merrill Miller reviews the new documentary "She's Beautiful When She's Ang...

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

Time for another humanist question. Why do humanists/atheists still spell god wi...

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

The American Humanist Association has sent letters to newly elected members of C...

10 days ago

American Humanist Association

Would you go to Mars knowing you would not return?

10 days ago

American Humanist Association

BREAKING NEWS!! ATHEIST comedian is running for California state senate!!

11 days ago