News and Notes - October 2013

By George Kane

george head smallWisconsin’s state constitution provides excellent protection for the separation of church and state, defining it more clearly than the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. Since the state legislature is now firmly in thrall to the religious right, however, both houses have taken up a constitutional amendment to eviscerate that protection.


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James Zimmerman to speak at October MN Atheists Meeting in Apple Valley

zimmerman-jamesThe October meeting of Minnesota Atheists will feature James Zimmerman discussing his new book Deliverance at Hand! Much of Zimmerman's book takes place in Apple Valley which is partly why we selected this location. 

James is a member of the Minnesota Atheists Editorial Board and a former editor of The Minnesota Atheist newsletter.He is a frequent host and guest of the Atheists Talk television show. His writing has appeared in The Minnesota Atheist, The Humanist, Free Inquiry, and American Atheist. His essay “Losing My Head” appears in the book Atheist Voices of Minnesota, which he helped edit.


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Book Review: An Atheist Guerrilla Debating Manual

By Lewis Campbell

chuck hallPlaying Chess with Pigeons: A Compendium of Fundamentalist Apologetics and their Refutations by Chuck Hall. BMDO Publications.

Chuck Hall says he has been debating fundamentalist Christians for over forty years. Playing Chess with Pigeons certainly contains the largest arsenal of anti-fundamentalist debating points you are likely to find anywhere.

Hall provides a long list of typical fundamentalist arguments, along with a detailed refutation for each one. He also introduces some more unusual debating points. He gives us a very long list of contradictions in the Bible, and notes that even this long list is only the beginning. And in one especially interesting section, Hall cites numerous passages from scripture to show that the writers of the Bible almost certainly conceived of the Earth as flat.


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Weekend of Unbelievable Fun a Success for the 2nd Year in a Row

mr. paul aints baseball player - 2013-1We did it again! We pulled off another unbelievably fun weekend this summer for the second year in a row thanks to the help of a lot of members and supporters of Minnesota Atheists!

The fun started in the late afternoon on Friday, August 9th, in the Midway Stadium parking lot, where we tailgated until a few minutes before our St. Paul Saints/Mr. Paul Aints baseball game. At about 6:30 p.m. our group began filtering into the stadium to watch Minnesota Atheists president Eric Jayne toss the ceremonial first pitch. He provided a little flair in his windup before pitching a perfect strike to the Mr. Paul Aints catcher behind home plate.


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President's Column: Why I'm an Atheist Activist

By Eric Jayne

eric aints glove-1Now that our second annual regional conference and Mr. Paul Aints game weekend is behind us, I’ve been able to take a deep breath and remind myself why I volunteer so much of my time and energy toward the cause of atheism. I recognize that there are many self-identified atheists in the United States who seem to be getting along just fine without actively supporting atheism. They take no interest in supporting atheist organizations and some even complain that atheist activism is an unfavorable endeavor on par with religious proselytizing. So then why do I and others do it? Why do I make myself vulnerable by publicly proclaiming my atheism? Is atheism really worth supporting? To put it more simply, why am I an atheist activist?


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