Category Archives: biography

In Praise of Ka’ahumanu

My wife and I plan to vacation in Hawaii later this year, and in preparation we decided to read a few books about Hawaiian history and culture. Among the books I recommend are Unfamiliar Fishes by Sarah Vowell and Captive … Continue reading

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Letters to a Young Muslim

Hardly anyone would disagree that Islam is at war. But who defines what it is to be a Muslim? And who exactly are the combatants? These two questions are almost impossible to answer, and without answers it is nearly impossible to solve the … Continue reading

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Podcast #249 – The Faith of Christopher Hitchens

We discuss Larry Alex Taunton’s new book The Faith of Christopher Hitchens: The Restless Soul of the World’s Most Notorious Atheist (available in hardcover, as an audiobook, or for Kindle). In this memoir, Taunton (a Birmingham, Alabama based minister and … Continue reading

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May 22 in freethought history…

May 22, 2013 – Newly elected Pope Francis delivers a homily, in which he seems to imply that atheists may go to Heaven: “The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ: all of us, … Continue reading

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May 21 in freethought history…

May 21, 1921 – Nuclear scientist, Soviet dissident and human rights activist Andrei Sakharov is born in Moscow. He turned from designing nuclear weapons for the USSR to opposing their proliferation. He also advocated for human rights, including freedom of speech, for … Continue reading

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May 20 in freethought history…

May 20, 1958 - Radio talk show host and political commentator Ron Reagan is born in Los Angeles, California. He is best known for the fact that his liberal political views contrasted sharply with the conservatism of his parents, the late President … Continue reading

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May 18 in freethought history…

May 18, 1872 - Philosopher and activist Bertrand Russell is born in Trellech, Wales. Aside from his career contributions to philosophy, mathematics, linguistics and computer science, he was a lifelong critic of war and an advocate for progressive social causes. He … Continue reading

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May 16 in freethought history…

May 16, 1979 - African-American civil rights activist Asa Philip Randolph dies in New York City, aged 90. Randolph was a key figure in the fight to end discrimination in the defense industry and the US military, and he was head … Continue reading

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May 15 in freethought history…

May 15, 1876 – Felix Adler delivers a “Founding Address” at the first gathering of what would become the New York Society for Ethical Culture. He concluded his speech by saying, “The time calls for action. Up, then, and let us … Continue reading

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May 14 in freethought history…

May 14, 1940 – Anarchist and atheist activist Emma Goldman dies in Toronto, Canada, aged 70. Born in Russia in 1869, she emigrated to American in 1885. She wrote, “The philosophy of Atheism represents a concept of life without any … Continue reading

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