THE   FOCUS
centerforatheism.org
      
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
         
 
      
 
  
 
  
 
  
 
 
 
         
      

OCTOBER 29, 2010
Volume 6, Issue 43
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
      
 
 
 
 
 
     
 
 
 
         
 
      
 
  
 
         
 
  
  
 
         
 
      
 .


===================================
FEATURED ARTICLES 

The Caucus: Night Watch: O'Donnell and the Constitution 
New York Times 
The words “church” and “state” are not there. “What Ms. O'Donnell got right was the technicality,” Mr. Cooper said. “What a lot of people think she missed ... 
http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/10/20/night-watch-odonnell-and-the-constitution/?partner=rss&emc=rss 

ATHEISM 

Freshmen attempt atheist club, religious inquiry 
Hillsdale Collegian 
The Galloway Atheists' Club, as it is called while the founders decide on an official name (the latest possibility is the Club for Religious Alternatives), ... 
http://www.hillsdalecollegian.com/freshmen-attempt-atheist-club-religious-inquiry-1.1690146 

Atheists, faithful discuss poll claiming nonbelievers know more about world ... 
Southeast Missourian 
Bob Towner and Bryan Schilligo, an atheist, pose outside of Christ Episcopal Church in Cape Girardeau. Don't try to convince Bryan Schilligo there is a God. ... 
http://www.semissourian.com/story/1672888.html 

Atheists Debate How Pushy to Be 
New York Times 
Others believe morality is bequeathed by evolution, while still others would argue for ethics grounded in secular philosophy, like Immanuel Kant's or John ... 
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/16/us/16beliefs.html 

Freedom From Religion Foundation launches campaign 
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 
Gaylor said many freethinkers are afraid to go public because of the hostility toward atheists and agnostics in American society, and that secrecy ... 
http://www.jsonline.com/features/religion/105195909.html 

Atheist group 'outs' its own members in ad campaign 
Madison.com 
The "Out of the Closet" billboard campaign, or, as Gaylor puts it, the "Friendly Neighborhood Atheist and Agnostic Campaign," features photos of group ... 
http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/article_a5ded68a-db1c-11df-94b1-001cc4c03286.html 

Humanists preaching atheism on buses 
Belleville Intelligencer 
The second ad features a photograph of legendary Hollywood actress Katharine Hepburn and a quote from her explaining that she is an atheist. ... 
http://www.intelligencer.ca/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=2809154 

EU atheist-freemason summit 'very odd', says Europe's chief unbeliever 
EUobserver.com 
EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - The first ever summit between representatives of secularist, atheist and masonic organisations and the leaders of the European ... 
http://euobserver.com/843/31066 

BOOKS, FILM, THEATRE, TV, YOU TUBE 

Movie Review: 'Norah's Will' 
The Epoch Times 
(Menemsha Films) José Kurtz is an atheist or at least he plays one to annoy the religious leaders of Mexico City's tightly knit Jewish community. ... 
http://www.theepochtimes.com/n2/content/view/44298/ 

It's easier 'Seder' than done 
New York Post 
Jose, who has been divorced 20 years, is an atheist -- and he wants no part of the Jewish burial procedures. This leads to clashes with her rabbi, ... 
http://www.nypost.com/p/entertainment/movies/it_easier_seder_than_done_gByuZWrEyBa951GImg4S6N 

'Tillman Story': A family's quest to find the truth 
Buffalo News 
He was an atheist who read Ralph Waldo Emerson and Noam Chomsky, and was critical of military involvement in Iraq. He also had a strong sense of principle, ... 
http://www.buffalonews.com/entertainment/gusto/movie-reviews/article220471.ece 

Why science should shape morality 
Salon 
In the knock-'em, sock-'em world of contemporary atheism debates, his more considered and nuanced work gets shoved aside as partisans avidly search for more ... 
http://www.salon.com/books/feature/2010/10/17/sam_harris_interview/ 

Christine O'Donnell ignorant of the Constitution 
Christine O'Donnell does not know the bill of rights, Via: www.fameappeal.com Go to 2:37, 7:03, 3:35 For Fame Appeal Articlebit.ly clip was taken ... 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=miwSljJAzqg 

Movie Review: Nora's Will Is Hereafter Minus the Sap 
New York Magazine 
While waiting for his son and son's family to arrive, the militant atheist must now endure a procession of Orthodox Jews who annoy him so deeply that he ... 
http://nymag.com/daily/entertainment/2010/10/movie_review_hereafter_minus_t.html 

Agora (review) 
Flick Filosopher (blog) 
“We are brothers,” the pagan (perhaps even atheist) Hypatia tells her students: they have much more in common than small differences can possibly divide ... 
http://www.flickfilosopher.com/blog/2010/10/1012010agora_review.html 

EVOLUTION, CREATIONISM, I.D. 

Three museum organizations add their voices for evolution 
National Center for Science Education 
... schools as a core part of the science curriculum and we urge that views such as creationism and intelligent design should not be taught as science. ... 
http://ncse.com/news/2010/10/three-museum-organizations-add-their-voices-evolution-006254 

New Scientist on the Dover anniversary 
National Center for Science Education 
Dover , the case establishing the unconstitutionality of teaching "intelligent design" in the public schools, New Scientist (October 20, 2010) reports on ... 
http://ncse.com/news/2010/10/new-scientist-dover-anniversary-006262 

SCIENCE 

How to Weigh a Star Using a Moon 
ScienceDaily (Oct. 16, 2010) — How do astronomers weigh a star that's trillions of miles away and way too big to fit on a bathroom scale? In most cases they can't, although they can get a best estimate using computer models of stellar structure... 
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101015140801.htm 

Happier to Give Than Receive? 
ScienceDaily (Oct. 16, 2010) — Is there a correlation between a nation's contributions to international aid programs and the happiness of its citizens? According to a study of nine European donor countries, there is a direct relationship between the level of foreign aid and level of happiness in the UK and France but for other European countries there seems to be no link. Full details of the analysis and its conclusions are published this month in the journal Global Business and Economics Review... 
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101015110149.htm 

Scientists Discover New Species in One of World’s Deepest Ocean Trenches 
ScienceDaily (Oct. 16, 2010) — Scientists investigating in one of the world's deepest ocean trenches -- previously thought to be void of fish -- have discovered an entirely new species... 
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101015191723.htm 

What Did Tyrannosaurus Rex Eat? Each Other 
ScienceDaily (Oct. 15, 2010) — It turns out that the undisputed king of the dinosaurs, Tyrannosaurus rex, didn't just eat other dinosaurs but also each other. Paleontologists from the United States and Canada have found bite marks on the giants' bones that were made by other T. rex, according to a new study published online Oct. 15 in the journal PLoS ONE... 
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101015185836.htm 

Beauty Is in the Eye of the Beholder the World Over 
ScienceDaily (Oct. 15, 2010) — Western culture is increasingly obsessed with physical appearance and beauty, but vanity is nothing new, nor is it limited to just one culture. Moreover, differences in our perception of physical beauty have an enormous impact on the fashion, cosmetics, and weight control industries, and more recently on aesthetic surgery trends. Understanding how culture and region alter the perception of beauty is therefore not only of anthropological and social interest but underpins multibillion dollar industries across the globe... 
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101015140806.htm 

Squid Studies Provide Valuable Insights Into Hearing Mechanisms 
ScienceDaily (Oct. 15, 2010) — The ordinary squid, Loligo pealii -- best known until now as a kind of floating buffet for just about any fish in the sea -- may be on the verge of becoming a scientific superstar, providing clues about the origin and evolution of the sense of hearing... 
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101015125643.htm 

Eat Safer: Novel Approach Detects Unknown Food Pathogens 
ScienceDaily (Oct. 15, 2010) — Technologies for rapid detection of bacterial pathogens are crucial to maintaining a secure food supply... 
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101015113510.htm 

Changing the Color of Single Photons Emitted by Quantum Dots 
ScienceDaily (Oct. 15, 2010) — Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have demonstrated for the first time the conversion of near-infrared 1,300 nm wavelength single photons emitted from a true quantum source, a semiconductor quantum dot, to a near-visible wavelength of 710 nm. The ability to change the color of single photons may aid in the development of hybrid quantum systems for applications in quantum communication, computation and metrology... 
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101014131917.htm 

SEPARATION CHURCH / STATE 

'Moment of silence' law upheld for Illinois schools 
Chicago Tribune 
A Buffalo Grove High School student, the daughter of atheist activist Rob Sherman, filed the lawsuit after state legislators in 2007 made the daily moment ... 
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/education/ct-met-moment-of-silence-20101015,0,3040030.story 

Minnesota pastors plan to endorse candidates from pulpit 
Minnesota Independent 
It's unclear whether the IRS has fixed its system, says Rob Boston, Senior Policy Analyst for Americans United for Separation of Church and State, ... 
http://minnesotaindependent.com/71514/minnesota-pastors-plan-to-endorse-candidates-from-pulpit 

Court rules against Dallas-area couple in bid to remove 'under God' from Texas ... 
Dallas Morning News 
... the arguments by David Wallace Croft and his wife, Shannon, that the wording is unconstitutional and violates the separation of church and state. ... 
http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/education/stories/101510dnmetpledge.2475c69.html 

Schools await direction after 'silence' switch 
Vernon Hills Review 
Buffalo Grove atheist Rob Sherman, who sued to get the law removed, plans another appeal. Meanwhile, school officials said Monday that they would not work ... 
http://www.pioneerlocal.com/vernonhills/news/2813700,buffalo-grove-silence-101810-s1.article 

Americans United files IRS complaint against church that endorsed Emmer 
Minnesota Independent 
By Andy Birkey | 10.18.10 | 3:04 pm Americans United for the Separation of Church and State filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service Monday ... 
http://minnesotaindependent.com/72610/americans-united-files-complaint-against-church-that-endorsed-emmer 

Upholding the sounds of silence 
St. Louis Beacon (blog) 
The decision sets aside a federal judge's order barring the state from implementing the law on the grounds that it violated the separation between church ... 
http://stlbeacon.org/voices/blogs/law-scoop/105644-law-scoop-on-silent-reflection-decision 

O'Donnell questions separation of church, state 
San Jose Mercury News 
Republican Christine O'Donnell challenged her Democratic rival Tuesday to show where the Constitution requires separation of church and state, drawing swift ... 
http://www.mercurynews.com/politics-government/ci_16381117?nclick_check=1 

Complaint filed with IRS against pastor who endorsed candidates 
Kansas City Star 
A nonprofit group that has long advocated church-state separation filed a complaint Monday with the Internal Revenue Service over the Rev. ... 
http://www.kansascity.com/2010/10/19/2332056/complaint-filed-with-irs-against.html 

Moscow Rejects Ad Quoting Constitutional Freedom of Religion 
The Other Russia 
The Moscow city authorities have turned down an application from an atheist organization to erect a series of billboards quoting the Russian constitution. ... 
http://www.theotherrussia.org/2010/10/19/moscow-rejects-ad-quoting-constitutional-freedom-of-religion/ 

Hastings Pastor Defends Endorsing Candidates 
WCCO 
A group promoting separation of church and state filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service. They want the IRS to take away the church's tax-exempt ... 
http://wcco.com/politics/pastor.endorsing.candidates.2.1970734.html 

Polish government accuses Church of IVF 'blackmail' 
Times of Malta 
He said the Church's stern stance could see legislators voting in favour of IVF to demonstrate the separation of church and state. “Instead of being blocked ... 
http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20101020/world-news/polish-government-accuses-church-of-ivf-blackmail 

Atheist ad campaigns nixed 
The Moscow News 
According to Belozyorov, he was surprised to hear that ad agencies declined to run regular ad campaigns “with a vaguely atheist slogan. ... 
http://themoscownews.com/society/20101021/188145146.html?referfrommn 

If students don't want to hear prayers over PA system, they can “put their ... 
Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) 
David, I am a bit incredulous at your claim to be an atheist, perhaps you said it so that people wouldn't discount your argument as fallacious and hackneyed ... 
http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/2010/10/21/if-students-dont-want-to-hear-christian-prayers-over-pa-system-they-can-%E2%80%9Cput-their-fingers-in-their-ears/?cxntfid=blogs_get_schooled_blog 

Del. House candidate questions church, state 
Washington Post 
The men are running for the state's lone House seat. "The exact phrase 'separation of church and state' came out of Adolf Hitler's mouth," Urquhart told his ... 
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/21/AR2010102105641.html 

Christine O'Donnell Slams Media, Defends Views on Church-State Separation 
CBS News 
"Let me just clarify: You're telling me that the separation of church and state is found in the First Amendment?" O'Donnell said during the Tuesday debate. ... 
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-20020296-503544.html 

ACLU leery of satellite voting at Ames churches 
DesMoinesRegister.com 
"I'm not a great historian, but I kind of chuckle when I hear" about the separation of church and state, said Barrett, whose church regularly has around 400 ... 
http://www.desmoinesregister.com/article/20101021/NEWS/10210339/1011/NEWS10/ACLU-leery-of-satellite-voting-at-Ames-churches 

Settlement with Christian group over bible distribution opens door for other ... 
Naples Daily News 
Several groups, including the American Civil Liberties Union and Americans for Separation of Church and State, rallied to have the language made clearer ... 
http://www.naplesnews.com/news/2010/oct/21/collier-school-board-settlement-bible-distribution/ 

MISCELLANEOUS 

None 


===============================================