By Steve Petersen
In January James Zimmerman led a panel discussion with members Crystal Dervetski, Keith Lodermeier, and Ryan Sutter on Arguments for Believing In God. In the first program they discussed The Universe and Logic and on the second program they reviewed the Holy Books. If you would like to help on the cable program or sponsor the show on your cable access station or have ideas for a future program please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Mike Haubrich, Director, Atheist Talk Radio Show
I appreciate that August has shown the confidence in me to turn over the directing and scheduling duties to me. I wish to salute August for the hard work he has done in building this project. I think our shows are getting stronger by the month.
Stephanie Zvan is now the regular host, and I will remain as the backup host. In recent shows we have had science discussions with Perry Hackett and PZ Myers over the top life science stories of 2008; we have had Michael Newdow on to explain the suit to enjoin Chief Justice Roberts from appending "so help you god" from the inaugural oath and we had Dan Barker on the show to talk about his new book Godless. It was a pleasure for me to meet Dan and Perry in person and that is one of the benefits I take from being on the show.
Todd Allen Gates, finally, got his full show as we had two previous appearances cut short or cut out because of technical difficulties. Please listen to upcoming shows, as we will have shows on living morally as atheists, the humanism of Star Trek and a special show discussing Darwin and the Bell Museum. We are trying to schedule Richard Dawkins for the March 1 show.
For the remainder of this contract with KTNF, all of our sponsors renewed their contracts, but we appreciate further donations as sponsors don't cover all of the costs. I have proposed an incentive for donations, and I think it is very special.
If you would like to dedicate an entire show to a special person, all you need to do is donate $175.00 to the radio fund. We will announce the dedication during the show, and it is similar to a fundraising technique used for Minnesota Public Radio. It's a great way to tell someone you really think highly of them.
Planning is still in the works for where we will take the show when the current six month contract ends. More details as we start to solidify our blueprint.
By Eric Jayne
In the last decade of the 19th century, when the Golden Age of Freethought was at its peak, Francis Bellamy wrote the Pledge of Allegiance shortly after his tenure as a Baptist minister. It was published in the popular periodical The Youth's Companion as part of an 1892 celebration of the 400th anniversary of Columbus discovering America. The pledge went like this: "I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
Founding and Life member David Irwin died on January 13, 2009. He was 89. David lived a long life highlighted with many accomplishments. David was born on January 1, 1920 in Des Moines, Iowa; he served in the air corps during WWll, went to divinity school for two years and eventually realized he was an atheist. From 1976 to 1984 he shared his life with his lover Dick Hewetson (a fellow Minnesota Atheist member). Together they co-founded the Quatrefoil Library, dedicated to the collection and preservation of information about gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and other sexual minorities (GLBT). They started the library with their own collection of 1,500 books relating to homosexuality. In 1986 Matt Stark, also a Minnesota Atheists member and director of the Minnesota Civil Liberties Union (MCLU), rented them space in the MCLU building to display their books. The library never looked back. This is only one of three such lending libraries in the country dedicated to GLBT issues. It is open to the public daily and has educated the public and saved many GLBT lives over the years. The first part of David's life was that of a gay man trying to live as a straight man. He married his high school sweetheart, a woman, and had two children. This was in the 1940s and after a few years they divorced. David lived as a closeted gay man until the start of the Quatrefoil library. When the public announcement of the library was made, he used this as an opportunity to let his family know about his sexuality. The reaction was mixed. His two children rejected him. Others reacted with love and understanding. For two of his family members, who David cared for deeply, it was a non event. After that David and Dick came out to the GLBT community as atheists. But they still had more educating to do. They both have won awards for their work founding the Quatrefoil where they always mentioned their association with Minnesota Atheists. David and Dick separated, but worked together on the library and remanded good friends. David was an avid book reader. He played Bridge as often as possible and was a regular at the Quatrefoil. His legacy is he lived his life to its fullest and he eventually freed himself from the shackles of society conformity and used his experience to make a difference for the lives of others. The world is a better place because of David. We were honored to have him as a member. Memorials are requested for the Quatrefoil Library, 1619 Dayton Ave., Suite 105, St. Paul, MN 55104 (651) 641-0969. www.quatrefoillibrary.org.