Taner Edis

How to be Secular

I just read Jacques Berlinerblau’s How to be Secular: A Call to Arms for Religious Freedom. It’s a good book and well worth reading, precisely because it will rub a lot of atheists the wrong way. I see little to object to in Berlinerblau’s description of the poor state of secularism in the United States. How to be Secular

Aan petition

There’s a petition to the White House, to “Call upon the Indonesian government to respect the freedom and dignity of all its citizens and to free Alexander Aan.” Aan is the Indonesian currently imprisoned because of announcing he is an atheist on Facebook. If you haven’t signed it yet, what are you waiting for? There Aan petition

New Chick Tracts

Jack Chick does Islam. The reason you shouldn’t believe the Quran is the word of God because it says so is that the Bible is the word of God because it says so.


I’m fortunate to often run into students whose interests in physics go beyond what they encounter in class, and who might even develop their interests in philosophical directions. Anyway, one of my previous students has apparently been taking the ambitions of physics to describe everything very seriously, and has been worrying about the classic free Compatibilism

Criminalizing sex

A poster put out by one of the Islamist political parties in Turkey. On top of the image of people turned to stone, with hints of Sodom and Gomorrah, the slogans are “Criminalize adultery” and “Homosexuality is immorality.” They may eventually get their way as well. There’s considerable public support for enforcing religious morality through Criminalizing sex

New Chick Tracts

Jack Chick celebrates hell, and shows that his version of the Christian God is a seriously nasty character. The sheer obnoxiousness of the divine moral order as envisioned by Chick may even call into question atheistic attempts to use evil to argue against the existence of an omnibenevolent God. If someone can endorse this sort New Chick Tracts

Liberal pseudoscience

You have to wonder about American liberals, as represented by the Democratic party. Their foreign policy difference from Republicans is that they claim to be even better at slaughtering Muslims and erasing civil liberties. Their economic difference is that their version of neoliberalism tilts more toward certain Wall Street factions and Silicon Valley, rather than Liberal pseudoscience

Demographics on our side?

These days I often run into the notion that in the US, demographics is on the side of nonbelief. The excessive politicization of the Religious Right has turned off the poor, minorities, and the young. The new generation of “millennials” or whatever is less identified with organized religion. So if we just ride out this Demographics on our side?