By Herb Silverman
Humanist leaders look for media opportunities to explain our positions to the general public, and are usually countered by decidedly non-humanist opponents. In his new book, Creating Change through Humanism, American Humanist Association Executive Director Roy Speckhardt describes one such exchange:
When the AHA ran the “Why believe in a god? Just be good for goodness’ sake” bus advertisements in 2008, I was called to appear on CNN Headline News opposite the demagogue Catholic League President Bill Donohue. Donohue had the audacity to call our open-ended question “hate speech” while simultaneously comparing humanists to Jeffrey Dahmer and Adolf Hitler. He said that it was impossible to be good for goodness’ sake and that our ad was a personal attack on his faith.
Fittingly, that exchange appears in a chapter titled, “Prejudice Humanists Face.” I view the conversation be-tween Donohue and Speckhardt as a humanist version of “the good news.” The author’s gentle demeanor and rational arguments made humanists proud and earned respect even from many Christians who are continually embarrassed by Donohue’s victimhood rants.
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