Evangelical Christians Helped Elect Donald Trump, but Their Time as a Major Political Force Is Coming to an End
Dec 14, 2018 · 1 

By Nina Burleigh Alex Camire left the church a few months before his pastor announced from the pulpit that the election of Donald Trump was “a miracle of the Lord.” The 29-year-old Connecticut social worker had been raised in the evangelical tradition; his parents were married in it. But Camire’s faith had started to fail …

Cardinal George Pell Reportedly Convicted Of Sex Abuse Amid Gag Order In Australia
Dec 14, 2018 · 3 

By Bill Chappell Australian news outlets are grappling with how to handle one of the country’s biggest news stories of the year — even though a judge has barred them from reporting the details. The story revolves around Cardinal George Pell, a Vatican insider who was reportedly convicted of sexually abusing minors this week, and …

Once Again, House Republicans Are Trying to Repeal the Johnson Amendment
Dec 13, 2018

By Hemant Mehta Republicans’ attempts to repeal the Johnson Amendment aren’t over yet. For more than two years now, Donald Trump has promised the Religious Right that he would sign a repeal of the rule that forbids places of worship from endorsing political candidates if they want to keep their tax exempt status. If he were to …

D.C. backs away from special water rate relief for churches
Dec 13, 2018

By Peter Jamison D.C. officials have backed away from a proposal that would have made it easier for churches to qualify for a break on their water rates than other nonprofits, after critics said the policy could have been unconstitutional. The city is instead moving forward with a plan that would allow religious and secular nonprofits …

Texas State Rep. Files Bill to Let Teachers Post Ten Commandments in Classrooms
Dec 12, 2018

By Hemant Mehta A Texas Republican has already filed a bill that would allow public school teachers to post the Ten Commandments in their classrooms. State Rep. Dan Flynn says in HB 307 that “The board of trustees of an independent school district may not prohibit the posting of a copy of the Ten Commandments in a prominent location in …

Atheists Take Heart (and Office): New Poll Shows Major Support for Nonreligious Candidates
Dec 12, 2018

By Jennifer Bardi In a nation that consistently ranks atheists near the bottom of the “feeling thermometer,” identifying as a nonreligious or humanist candidate has traditionally been seen as a “bad” political move. But a new poll shows there’s virtually no political cost for elected officials to identify as a member of the humanist community. The poll, …

Canada repeals blasphemy law
Dec 12, 2018

By the BC Humanist Association Humanists are cheering the passage of a bill repealing Canada’s prohibition on “blasphemous libel” in the Senate today. Canada’s 19th century blasphemy law will be no more once the bill receives Royal Assent. Ian Bushfield, Executive Director, BC Humanist Association The passage of this Bill is a clear recognition by …

The Mental Health of Atheists and the ‘Nones’
Dec 11, 2018

By Rob Whitley, Ph.D. Christmas is approaching, and religious people across the world are preparing with the appropriate prayers, observations, and services. However, a growing proportion of the population is non-religious, and for them, Christmas can be a meaningless, empty, and lonely period. Indeed, a small but growing body of research continues to explore the relationship …

Florida GOP Gov.-Elect Appoints Anti-Science Members to Education Committee
Dec 11, 2018

By Hemant Mehta With Florida’s next governor, Republican Ron DeSantis, ready to take the helm, you can bet science education isn’t on the list of priorities. We saw the first sign of that recently when DeSantis “announced his 41-person team to develop a plan aimed at implementing his education goals.” On that list? Two people who are connected …

Atheists in Egypt ‘don’t exist’ but are still considered a ‘threat’
Dec 11, 2018

By Amr Ezzat Toward the end of 2009, an Egyptian blogger announced the imminent publication of his book, A Muslim Atheist. The title is reflective of a concept he believes in, based on his experiences: he isn’t Muslim currently; he used to be, but then he became an atheist. However, after a while, he found himself not …

Hundreds of sex abuse allegations found in fundamental Baptist churches across U.S.
Dec 10, 2018 · 12 

By Sarah Smith Joy Evans Ryder was 15 years old when she says her church youth director pinned her to his office floor and raped her. “It’s OK. It’s OK,” he told her. “You don’t have to be afraid of anything.” He straddled her with his knees, and she looked off into the corner, crying …

California DOJ Allows Catholic Hospital Groups to Merge, Raising Questions About Patient Access
Dec 10, 2018

By Amy Chen & Hayley Penan Imagine lying in an operating room, bright fluorescent lights shine in your eyes as a blur of health providers move around you preparing the room for emergency surgery. In the midst of this chaos, a nurse asks you why your chart says female when you present as male. The reality …