THE   FOCUS

June 29, 2008
Volume 4, Issue 26
Published by the Center For Atheism (CFA)
Editor: David Birnkrant
 
The Focus provides links to articles collected from major newspapers and magazines, and is emailed weekly.

This Week in Atheism is a cable show that discusses the articles featured below, every Wednesday at 6:30 PM (EST), Manhattan Cable station 57. 
Live streaming is available at: 
http://www.mnn.org.

Comments, suggestions and subscription: info@centerforatheism.org.


   SEE NYC ATHEISTS BLOG: 
WWW.NYC-ATHEISTS.ORG/BLOG/

  
         

FEATURED ARTICLES
Science teacher dissed evolution
Columbus Dispatch - Columbus,OH,USA
A Mount Vernon teacher undermined science instruction in the public school district by discrediting evolution in his classroom and focusing on creationism ...
http://www.columbusdispatch.com/live/content/local_news/stories/2008/06/20/mtvernon.ART_ART_06-20-08_B1_R2AHRH3.html?sid=101


Mount Vernon board votes to fire science teacher
Columbus Dispatch - Columbus,OH,USA
Board members contend that Freshwater failed to follow the approved science curriculum and continued to teach creationism and intelligent design after being ...
http://www.columbusdispatch.com/live/content/local_news/stories/2008/06/20/freshwater_decision.html?sid=101


Religious groups plan gay marriage fight
Lower Hudson Journal news - West Harrison,NY,USA
Smith said his group will promote the recognition of gay marriage as a separation of church and state issue. "Who marries whom, what kind of ceremonies are ...
http://lohud.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2008806220364


George Carlin, the Comedian, Is Dead at 71

The New York Times
Monday, June 23, 2008 -- 1:15 AM ET

George Carlin, the Grammy-Award winning standup comedian and
actor who was hailed for his irreverent social commentary,
poignant observations of the absurdities of everyday life...

http://www.nytimes.com/?emc=na


Religion and Its Role Are in Dispute at the Service Academies
New York Times - by Neela Banerjee
Three years after a scandal at the Air Force Academy over the evangelizing of cadets by Christian staff and faculty members, students and staff...
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/25/us/25academies.html?ex=137213


Christianity 'could die within our century'
Telegraph - U.K
More than half of Britons think Christianity is likely to have disappeared from the country within a century, according to a new survey...
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/2160495/Christianity-%27could-die-out-within-a-century%27.html#continue


Jindal signature renews La. evolution debate
The Times-Picayune - NOLA.com - New Orleans,LA,USA
Bobby Jindal has signed legislation said to foster "critical thinking" about evolution and other science topics in Louisiana public schools, ...
http://www.nola.com/newsflash/index.ssf?/base/news-40/121459256184230.xml&storylist=louisiana

 

 
News Articles
  (Some publications may require that you sign up for membership to view their article.)
 

ATHEISM
Several injured in protests against Kerala textbook
Khaleej Times - Dubai,United Arab Emirates
... the student wing of the opposition Congress, against a textbook containing atheistic material turned violent for the third consecutive day yesterday. ...
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/darticlen.asp?xfile=data/subcontinent/2008/June/subcontinent_June723.xml&section=subcontinent&col=


Atheist wants Frankenmuth to remove religious symbols
DetNews.com - Detroit,MI,USA
So when local atheist Lloyd Clarke wanted to remove a cross from the seal, along with ones in a city park and on a state bridge, residents rose nearly as ...
http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080621/METRO/806210306/1409/METRO


Praying for Carlin? No, thanks.
Dallas Morning News - Dallas,TX,USA
He was an emphatic atheist, and there's just about nothing that he would have valued less than knowing that people were praying for him. ...
http://religionblog.dallasnews.com/archives/2008/06/praying-for-carlin-no-thanks-1.html


Muslims and secular parties against pro-atheism textbook
AsiaNews.it - Italy
by Nirmala Carvalho Muslim groups and some secular parties in Kerala call on the authorities to withdraw a book from high school that promotes atheism. ...

http://www.asianews.it/index.php?l=en&art=12580&size=A


They Don't Make Atheists Like They Used To
New York Times - United States
"What this means is that Atheism has become a cultural designation, rather than a theological statement," Waldman writes on his Beliefnet blog. ..
http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/06/25/they-dont-make-atheists-like-they-used-to/?ref=opinion


No withdrawal of textbook: Baby
Hindu - Chennai,India
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Education Minister MA Baby on Tuesday rejected the Opposition demand for the withdrawal of the seventh standard social sciences textbook ...
http://www.hindu.com/2008/06/25/stories/2008062550030100.htm


Atheist group may look at Mesa County prayer next
Grand Junction Free Press - Grand Junction,Colorado,USA
By Emily Anderson GRAND JUNCTION — Western Colorado Atheists and Freethinkers hope Mesa County commissioners are following the group's attempt to get the ...
http://www.gjfreepress.com/article/20080627/COMMUNITY_NEWS/628297679/1076&ParentProfile=1059

BOOKS, FILM, THEATRE, TV, YOU TUBE

George Carlin - Religion Is Bullshit
YouTube - Broadcast Yourself

In honor of the great one...gone but not forgotten.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=X8evsSNdXcs 


Summer reading 1: Lauri Lebo's "Devil in Dover"
ScienceBlogs - USA
The Dover trial was so much more than just a test of the first amendment and a victory against the teaching of intelligent design. ...

http://scienceblogs.com/aetiology/2008/06/summer_reading_1_lauri_lebos_d.php

 

EVOLUTION, CREATIONISM, I.D.
How Darwin won the evolution race
guardian.co.uk - UK
'In the end, Wallace came to believe evolution was sometimes guided by a higher power,' adds Endersby, who has edited the forthcoming
Cambridge University ...
http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2008/jun/22/darwinbicentenary.evolution


Philadelphia Set to Honor Darwin and Evolution
New York Times - United States
Events will include a talk by John E. Jones III, a federal judge who ruled in 2005 that teaching intelligent design — the belief that some aspects of nature ...
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/23/us/23darwin.html?_r=1&ref=us&oref=slogin


Foe of Florida's new science standards stepping down from State ...
Orlando Sentinel - Orlando,FL,USA
Those standards require Florida students to be taught about evolution. Alarmed that evolution was called the "fundamental concept underlying all of biology ...
http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_education_edblog/2008/06/foe-of-floridas.html


Christians challenge teaching of evolution
Stuff.co.nz - New Zealand
By LANE NICHOLS - The Dominion Post | Saturday, 28 June 2008 A Christian group promoting intelligent design theory over evolution has sent teaching material ...
http://www.stuff.co.nz/4599856a10.html


Americans United Will Monitor Implementation Of New Louisiana Anti ...
Americans United - Washington,DC,USA
Americans United for Separation of Church and State today warned Louisiana officials that lawsuits will result if the state's new anti-evolution law is used ...
http://www.au.org/site/News2?JServSessionIdr009=p677zibu94.app7b&abbr=pr&page=NewsArticle&id=9913&security=1002&news_iv_ctrl=1241

 

SCIENCE

Legionnaire Microbe's Tricks Discovered
(June 20, 2008) -- Researchers have shed new light how bacteria like the ones that cause Legionnaires' disease and Q-fever raise such havoc in human patients. In order to survive, the gram-negative bacteria use genes...

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619142056.htm


Surprisingly Rapid Changes In Earth's Core Discovered
(June 20, 2008) -- The movements in the liquid part of the Earth's core are changing surprisingly quickly, and this affects the Earth's magnetic field, according to new...

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619102553.htm


Zebra's Stripes, Butterfly's Wings: How Do Biological Patterns Emerge?
(June 20, 2008) -- A zebra's stripes, a seashell's spirals, a butterfly's wings: these are all examples of patterns in nature. The formation of patterns is a puzzle for mathematicians and...

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619111748.htm


Chill Out, Your Computer Knows What's Best For You
(June 21, 2008) -- Computers are starting to become more human-centric, anticipating your needs and smoothly acting to meet them. The technologies under development leave humans free to concentrate

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619103528.htm


Huntington's Disease: Discovery Will Assist Treatment And Research Into Fatal Brain Disorder
(June 21, 2008) -- Research using newly developed Magnetic Resonance Imaging technology could soon allow clinicians to confirm Huntington's disease before symptoms appear in people who have the gene for the fatal

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080616223422.htm


Tissue Regeneration: New Source Of Heart Stem Cells Discovered
(June 23, 2008) -- Researchers have pinpointed a new, previously unrecognized group of stem cells that give rise to cardiomyocytes, or heart muscle cells. These stem cells, located in the surface of the heart, or epicardium, advance the hope of being able to regenerate...

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080622224433.htm


New Discovery Proves 'Selfish Gene' Exists
(June 22, 2008) -- A new discovery provides conclusive evidence that the "selfish" gene does exist. In studying genomes, the word "selfish" does not refer to self-centered behavior but rather to the blind tendency of genes wanting to continue their existence into the next…

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080620115905.htm


Natural 'Invisible' Gold Found In Nanoparticles
(June 24, 2008) -- Nanoparticles of gold too small to be seen with the naked eye have been created in laboratories, but up until now, have never been seen in nature. ...

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080623105020.htm


Unlocking Genome Of World's Worst Insect Pest
(June 23, 2008) -- Scientists are on the brink of a discovery which will facilitate the development of new, safe, more sustainable ways of controlling the world's worst agricultural insect pest -- the moth, Helicoverpa armigera.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080618091707.htm

 

SEPARATION CHURCH / STATE

Yearning for Zion: What next for the polygamists?
Times Online - UK
Life on the state line was fairly peaceful for the FLDS, not least because the local cops were members of the church, so any awkwardness involving, ...
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article4164416.ece


Ten Commandments monument foe drops his legal battle with Everett
HeraldNet - Everett,WA,USA
He was joined by several attorneys around the country, as well as Americans United for Separation of Church and State. In September 2005, US District Court ...
http://heraldnet.com/article/20080621/NEWS01/505306771


South Carolina being sued over Holy number plates that carry the ...
Telegraph.co.uk - United Kingdom
Americans United for Separation of Church and State, a "religious liberty watchdog" based in Washington DC, claims the plates violate the US Constitution by ...
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/2164556/South-Carolina-being-sued-over-Holy-number-plates-that-carry-the-image-of-a-cross.html


You've Got (Hate) Mail!: South Carolina Lawsuit Sparks Barrage Of ...
Americans United - Washington,DC,USA
.. fact: If you think hate mail will slow down AU, think again. It only spurs us on to work even harder in defense of the church-state wall...

http://blog.au.org/2008/06/20/youve-got-hate-mail-south-carolina-lawsuit-sparks-barrage-of-correspondence-from-aus-religious-right-friends/


Marriage, American Style: Is It Past Time For Church And State To ...
Americans United - Washington,DC,USA
In America, we separate church and state. Is it time – maybe past time – to apply that principle to marriage? In an interesting article carried by the ...

http://blog.au.org/2008/06/23/marriage-american-style-is-it-past-time-for-church-and-state-to-get-a-divorce/


Politics and religion: A closer walk
Minneapolis Star Tribune - Minneapolis,MN,USA
First of all, the 8% of us who … read more self-identify as non-religious (or atheist, or agnostic) may or may not be liberal in our politics. ...
http://www.startribune.com/politics/20726459.html?location_refer=Editorials


Anti-Defamation League weighs in on Ten Commandments case
Deseret News - Salt Lake City,UT,USA
"It involves a religious display on public property, which should naturally raise issues of church and state separation, but up until now it has been framed ...
http://us.mc579.mail.yahoo.com/mc/compose?fid=Draft&mid=1_15361_AGrsjkQAASp8SGVZtAr0%2FUqNwlM&draft=1&uc=1&.rand=1245646068&ymcjs=1


Separation of Church and States: Republicans vs. Founding Fathers
Political Cortex - New York,NY,USA
The Bush Administration has been violating the Constitutional separation of church and state in even worse ways. Evangelical extremists are being given full ...
http://www.politicalcortex.com/story/2008/6/15/103622/470

 

MISCELLANEOUS

China set to become top Bible maker
Los Angeles Times - CA,USA
A booming Bible industry is turning the world's biggest atheist nation into the world's largest supplier of the Good Book. A company aims to print 12 ...
http://www.latimescom/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-bible22-2008jun22,0,2725020.story

 
 
  CONVENTIONS / MEETINGS / EVENTS
 
 Atheists  Alliance International                   Sept. 25-28, 2008    Long Beach, Ca.
 
 Freedom From Religion                                Oct. 10-12, 2008       Chicago
 
 Gift for Life Day                                                Nov. 4, 2008             NATION-WIDE
 
             
 
        CFA Program
 
The Center for Atheism (CFA) was established by the New York City Atheists as a separate and independent national organization to propose, develop, and be a catalyst for new national activities supporting the objectives of atheists, agnostics, humanists, freethinkers, skeptics, secularists and separation-of-church-and-state advocates. 

CFA will accept and review suggestions from individuals and other secular organizations that will foster our goals.
 
 
          Special Notices

          There are no special notices this week.
 
 
 
Comments, suggestions, and subscriptions: info@centerforatheism.org