The Humanist Advocate

Only Free Speech Can Stop Islamic Fundamentalism

  What happened in Chautauqua, New York on the 12th of August was disturbing yet predictable. Salman Rushdie, who wrote the controversial book The Satanic Verses, became a primary target of the former Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ayatollah Khomeini, who issued a fatwa that would legitimize the execution of Rushdie. To no one’s surprise, such fatwas were regularly issued by the Iranian totalitarian theocratic regime that has been actively causing socio-political turmoil in the Middle East. …

Secular White Christian Nationalism?

To get the most recent and  thorough understanding of this thing we call white Christian nationalism, The Flag and the Cross: White Christian Nationalism and the Threat to America, published in April this year should be just such a book, especially if you are interested in a smattering of academic sociology research surveys used to inform a deeper dive into the mindset of citizens participating in the surveys. Over a dozen graphed surveys using their “christian nationalist scale” are documented …

What’s Awesome about an Atheist Conference

What’s Awesome about an Atheist Conference A report on AACon 2022 by Beth Deitch   “What’s the point of a conference for nonbelievers? Do you just sit around and talk about how there’s no god for an entire weekend?” I’ve heard that bit of confused criticism expressed more than once, when I’ve mentioned attending a secular conference.  And the answer is, “Of course not—that would be a rather brief convention: Is there a god? Nope! Let’s all go home now.”…

You Can Help Right An Injustice – The Brandon Woodruff Case

Recently NOSHA members had the rare opportunity to screen a documentary (seen for the first time outside of Texas) and show support for a young man who appears to have been wrongfully imprisoned for a crime he didn’t commit: Texas Justice: Brandon Woodruff. This film takes a hard-hitting look at the case of a 19-year-old college kid who was accused of, tried, and convicted of the execution style murder of both of his parents. The Innocence Project of Texas is…

Religious Law is Not So “Natural” Anymore

The Roe decision Friday should not have come as much of a surprise to those following the case and the sneak peek leak of the final decision in early May. But the reality of the court’s official ruling was as shocking as the news of a missing family member’s body is discovered to the distraught family. “Say it ain’t so!” –you just cannot prepare, even with the grimmest of warnings.   The fact is, the warning signs have been coming…

Support NOSHA and your secular community

Greetings NOSHA Friends! The time has rolled around (finally) when we can send out our annual thanks to all who have helped the New Orleans Secular Humanist Association over the years by supporting our unique position in this area with your interest, participation, and membership support. We hope the health and well being of you, your family, and friends has not been adversely affected by the pandemic over the past couple of years, but we know that everyone has been…

Why Isn’t Everyone an Atheist?

    Why does religion persist? We live in an overwhelmingly secular world. Religious practices play little to no role in day to day life any more, at least not in the rich countries. If we have a medical problem the normal solution involves a modern doctor who does not use divination for diagnosis nor prayer for treatment. If the doctor has religious beliefs or affiliations with a church, we expect that to play no part in the treatment. If…

BOOK REVIEW: The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan

Review by Dean Bedekar, January 2022 In March 1997, police were called to a mansion in Rancho Santa Fe outside San Diego. Inside they found 39 dead men and women, all dressed in black, with their travel bags packed. It was a mass suicide. A note left by their leader, Marshall Applewhite, said they were ready to board a spaceship travelling behind the comet Hale-Bopp that would take them to the next level of consciousness. What happened? What demon could…

How many children must die? From 30-Second Read

One of our community members is a regular contributor to 30-Second Read Random thoughts, anecdotes and specks of whimsy. In 180 words. Emily Toth, also a member of our Thursday Night Zoom Visits wanted to share her recent column with the NOSHA community: How many many children must die?    I was in fifth grade when I first knew a kid who was dying. Howie Katz was my classmate at Hazeldell Elementary School in Cleveland, and he’d written a song:…

The Rockin’ Genesis of Secular Music: From the Mundane to the Insane

Back in my later high school years (2002-2005), it was a joy to research a variety of rock music and artists while living in Europe as iTunes was like a massive library. I would regularly devise fresh playlists for my early iPod (RIP years of frayed headphone cords!) like a chef perfecting a masterful dish. Mine was metal music to be exact. Everything from 70’s era blues-influenced bands like Cream, Led Zeppelin, and Black Sabbath, to more extreme departures like…

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