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MESSAGE FROM THE EDITOR: Challenging Religious Claims

Posted October 25, 2012

Last weekend I was in Albuquerque, New Mexico, which has become one of my favorite cities in the United States. I love it all: the history, the culture, and the food—oh, the spicy New Mexican food! I particularly enjoyed a visit to the Petroglyphs National Park, where our tour guide Luke talked about the history of the area and how the rock formations developed over 200,000 years ago. After the tour, I asked Luke if he ever encountered fundamentalist religious groups that challenge his 200,000-year-old claim. Not only did he say yes, but that because of his commitment to accurate scientific data, he’s no longer assigned to lead tours by such groups! We were lucky to have him.

Luke’s unwavering support for sound science inspired me to think of ways we can challenge anti-science claims in our own work. There’s never a need to be aggressive or mean when debating someone over religious or scientific claims, but I feel that standing up for the facts is what being a humanist is all about.

What are some ways you challenge fundamentalist religious claims? Do you have a story to share? Write to us at hnn@americanhumanist.org.

Maggie Ardiente
Editor, HNN

From the AHA Archives: Ted Turner, 1990 Humanist of the Year

Posted October 25, 2012

Listen to a speech by CNN founder and philanthropist Ted Turner, who was presented with the 1990 Humanist of the Year Award in Orlando, Florida. 

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Why New Religions? The Sociology of Cults and the Need to Belong

Posted October 25, 2012

Cadell Last, a graduate student at the University of Toronto, reacts to the recent film, The Master, and examines why new religions like Scientology are rapidly growing in numbers. 

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Pew Survey Reveals Religion’s Fading Influence

Posted October 25, 2012

Jeff Satterwhite, a doctoral candidate in religious studies at the University of Denver, analyzes the recent Pew Forum survey on “nones” in America and what it means for the secular movement. 

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The Convictions of a Humanist: Remembering Paul Kurtz

Posted October 25, 2012

Humanists are mourning Paul Kurtz, longtime secular humanist advocate, who died on October 20, 2012. Read the American Humanist Association’s statement on Kurtz’s death and his 1997 Lifetime Achievement Award speech from the May/June 2008 issue of The Humanist.

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Support the ERA: A Statement from Pro-Choice Activist Bill Baird

Posted October 25, 2012

Bill Baird, longtime activist for reproductive freedom, lends his support to the AHA’s Feminist Caucus and the passage of the Equal Rights Amendment. 

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Film Review: A Whisper to a Roar

Posted October 25, 2012

Meghan Hamilton reviews a new and highly talked about documentary about five politically corrupt and socially torn countries working to improve the quality of life for their people. 

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Your Published Letter-To-The-Editor

Posted October 25, 2012

Thanks for helping to get the word out about humanism! Did your letter-to-the-editor get published in a local or national newspaper? Read some recently published letters from AHA members.

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The Comics Section: Literal Bible, More God Talk, Democracy, Atheist Morality

Posted October 25, 2012

We’re jam-packed with new comics this week by Jesus and Mo, Ape Not Monkey, The Bad Chemicals and The Atheist Pig!

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