SEPTEMBER 10, 2010
Volume 6, Issue 36
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. 
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Unholy row
BBC News
"That article meant not only the separation of Church and state but the subordination of the Church to the state," says Francisco Ibarra Palafox, ...


Atheist group says messages counter proliferation of religious symbols
The Times of Trenton -
The FFRF has a large constituent base and is a heavily funded nonprofit that boasts of protecting the rights of agnostics, atheists and other “free thinkers ...

Study: Nonreligious Docs Hasten Death More
KVIA El Paso
LONDON -- Doctors who are atheist or agnostic are twice as likely to make decisions that could end the lives of their terminally ill patients, ...

Stoning: Biblical studies complex
Red and Black
It wasn't divine intervention that saved the lives of the University's atheist students during “Stone a Heathen Day” Tuesday. Those “stones” were actually ...

Groups dispute religion
The Daily Collegian Online
But Dan Farbowitz, a member of the Penn State Atheist Agnostic Association, didn't seem to budge from his convictions. He was cloaked in a brown, ...

Battle '10
National Review Online
The Foundation is part of the Freethought Society of Greater Philadelphia, a non-profit atheist advocacy group. Here's where things get really strange: The ...


Movie Review: The Last Exorcism (2010)
Firefox News (blog)
The set-up taps into the eternal debate between religion and atheism. There's a moment where the reverend jokes with the film crew that he can throw his ...


Scientists Square Off on Evolutionary Value of Helping Relatives
New York Times
They've even applied it to the evolution of our own species. But in the latest issue of the journal Nature, a team of prominent evolutionary biologists at ...

Is Believing In God Evolutionarily Advantageous?
Bering was a confirmed atheist. He did not believe in any kind of supernatural anything. He prided himself on being a scientist, a psychologist who believed ...


Ant Colonies Shed Light on Metabolism
ScienceDaily (Aug. 28, 2010) — Ants are usually regarded as the unwanted guests at a picnic. But a recent study of California seed harvester ants (Pogonomyrmex californicus) examining their metabolic rate in relation to colony size may lead to a better appreciation for the social, six-legged insects, whose colonies researchers say provide a theoretical framework for understanding cellular networks...

How Badly Does It Hurt? Research Examines the Biomedical Diagnosis of Pain
ScienceDaily (Aug. 28, 2010) — Is the science of diagnosing pain causing a number of pain sufferers to defend their honor? Research out of the University of Cincinnati is examining the diagnosis of pain that evades scientific testing, and the additional emotional suffering that can result for the patient...

Distant Star's Sound Waves Reveal Cycle Similar to the Sun's
ScienceDaily (Aug. 27, 2010) — In a bid to unlock longstanding mysteries of the Sun, including the impacts on Earth of its 11-year cycle, an international team of scientists has successfully probed a distant star. By monitoring the star's sound waves, the team has observed a magnetic cycle analogous to the Sun's solar cycle...

NASA's Kepler Mission Discovers Two Planets Transiting Same Star
ScienceDaily (Aug. 27, 2010) — NASA's Kepler spacecraft has discovered the first confirmed planetary system with more than one planet crossing in front of, or transiting, the same star...

Our Best and Worst Moments Occur Within Social Relationships, Research Shows
ScienceDaily (Aug. 27, 2010) — In the first study of its kind, researchers have found compelling evidence that our best and worst experiences in life are likely to involve not individual accomplishments, but interaction with other people and the fulfillment of an urge for social connection...

NASA's SOFIA Will Likely Help Solve Mysteries About Our Galaxy
ScienceDaily (Aug. 27, 2010) — How were millions of young stars able to form at the center of our Milky Way galaxy in the presence of an enormous black hole with a mass 4 million times that of the sun? This and other important questions may be answered by the NASA mission SOFIA, which is scheduled to make its first scientific measurements in the next few months...

First 3-D Atomic View of Key Genetic Processes
ScienceDaily (Aug. 27, 2010) — In a landmark study to be published in the journal Nature, scientists have been able to create the first picture of genetic processes that happen inside every cell of our bodies. Using a 3-D visualization method called X-ray crystallography, Song Tan, an associate professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at Penn State University, has built the first-ever image of a protein interacting with the nucleosome -- DNA packed tightly into space-saving bundles organized around a protein core. The research is expected to aid future investigations into diseases such as cancer...

Metop-A Completes 20,000th Orbit
ScienceDaily (Aug. 27, 2010) — Metop-A, Europe's first polar-orbiting satellite dedicated to operational meteorology, will complete its 20,000th orbit of the Earth on 27 August delivering its data to the EUMETSAT Polar System ground station on Svalbard around lunchtime...

Liver Cells Created from Patients' Skin Cells
ScienceDaily (Aug. 28, 2010) — By creating diseased liver cells from a small sample of human skin, scientists have now shown that stem cells can be used to model a diverse range of inherited disorders. The University of Cambridge researchers' findings, which will hopefully lead to new treatments for those suffering from liver diseases, were published August 25 in The Journal of Clinical Investigation...


Cuccinelli adds to Virginia political playbook
WTKR Your NewsChannel 3
The executive director of Americans United for a Separation of Church and State called the opinion "misguided" and predicted a wave of lawsuits over holiday ...,0,2821524.story

Sestak admits mistake on $35000 earmark
Delaware County Daily Times
“While some have attributed the goals and founding principles of the Free Thought Society to the Thomas Paine Foundation, in particular a link to atheist ...

Church and State and Student Activities
Inside Higher Ed
But Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, said via e-mail that the decision was a dangerous one. ...

County Cancels Horn-Endorsed Grant For Pro-Life Supporters
KGTV San Diego
... San Diego County Supervisor Bill Horn was canceled by county officials Thursday because they determined it violated the separation of church and state. ...


Christian Coalition Claims More Work Needed to Meet Apocalypse Deadline of 12 ...
The Spoof (satire)
While he abhors atheism, Robertson sees it as a necessary evil. On the positive side, Robertson said that incidences of egregious behaviors in America have ...