NOVEMBER 29, 2010
Volume 6, Issue 45
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
 
 
 


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FEATURED ARTICLES

Solicitor general surprises justices in religious schools case
Los Angeles Times
One advocate for separation of church and state calls the stance 'inexplicable.' By David G. Savage, Tribune Washington Bureau The Obam
a administration ...
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-religious-schools-20101104,0,1748850.story

Arizona tax-credit case a test of church vs. state
Arizona Republic
The issue surrounding the program itself is whether it violates the constitutional separation of church and state. Nearly all the scholarship dollars
go to ...
http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/news/articles/2010/10/30/20101030arizona-tax-credit-law.html

Arizona's tuition tax credit debated at US Supreme Court
AZ Central.com
... went before the US Supreme Court on Wednesday, and justices confronted attorneys on both sides about whether it violates separation of church and state. ...
http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2010/11/04/20101104arizona-tuition-tax-credit-us-supreme-court.html

ATHEISM

Atheist students say good morals can be practiced without a Bible
ASU Herald
By Chuck Kirkindall As its membership rapidly increases, the Secular Student Alliance (SSA) of ASU, an atheist student organization, works to build a ...
http://www.asuherald.com/mobile/features/atheist-students-say-good-morals-can-be-practiced-without-a-bible-1.2386392

Facing death, Hitchens refuses solace of illusions
The Australian
Hitchens is dying according to his atheism: stoically, far from the fold of religious consolation. In an interview with CNN, Hitchens was clear in his ...
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/facing-death-hitchens-refuses-solace-of-illusions/story-e6frg6ux-1225945340746

Christopher Hitchens On Suffering, Beliefs And Dying
NPR
by NPR Staff Christopher Hitchens -- an outspoken atheist, a gleeful provocateur and writer who has skewered everyone from Bill Clinton to Henry Kissinger ...
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=130917506

The Interview: AC Grayling
Varsity Online
by Rhys Treharne AC Grayling is not an atheist. Nor is he an a-goblinist, an a-fairiest, or an a-pixieist. He recognises no label that describes his lack of ...
http://www.varsity.co.uk/features/2697

Secular Students organize on campus
Michigan Times (subscription)
Overall, the Secular Students of Flint said they wish to promote a better understanding about what it means to be an atheist, agnostic, or non-religious ...
http://www.themichigantimes.com/student-life/secular-students-organize-on-campus-1.1738591

Atheist student groups on rise nationally
SU The Daily Orange (subscription)
He used to think atheists were sinners and had no morals. He used to judge atheists for not believing in God. But that was four years ago. ...
http://www.dailyorange.com/news/atheist-student-groups-on-rise-nationally-1.1739857

More atheists speak out
York Daily Record
Four years ago, he found what he was looking for in PA Nonbelievers, a group of atheists, agnostics, humanists and secularists in central Pennsylvania. ...
http://www.ydr.com/premium/ci_16501677

Religion News: Atheists come 'Out of the Closet'
Middletown Transcript
Atheist. The reverse side features Saturday Night Live alum Julia Sweeney and her message: "I read the bible! Now I am a proud atheist. ...
http://www.middletowntranscript.com/lifestyle/x2115301446/Religion-News-Atheist-group-launches-Out-of-the-Closet-campaign

BOOKS, FILM, THEATRE, TV, YOU TUBE

Movie Review: 'The Tillman Story'
Frothygirlz
Pat's atheism is discussed, as well as his growing disillusionment with the military's true motives. The documentary follows an unconventional timeline. ...
http://frothygirlz.com/2010/10/29/movie-review-the-tillman-story/

Penn Jillette and the gospel of disbelief
Toronto Star
If not, you might be surprised by Penn Jillette: first of all by how positively evangelical a man can be about atheism, and secondly by how happy he is to ...
http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/theatre/article/883556--penn-jillette-and-the-gospel-of-disbelief

Togas, sandals and Google-style grandeur
Buenos Aires Herald
Hypatia -- a woman with no interest in procreation and a self-proclaimed atheist -- became the target of hatred and intolerance. As told by AmenĂ¡bar's Agora ...
http://www.buenosairesherald.com/BreakingNews/View/50179

The God Vote: 'Collateral consequences' of tea party victories
Washington Post
Sally Quinn and Barry Lynn of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State on what the conservative victories will mean for school vouchers, ...
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/video/2010/11/04/VI2010110404312.html

EVOLUTION, CREATIONISM, I.D.

Leigh Van Valen, Evolution Revolutionary, Dies at 76
New York Times
For Dr. Van Valen, evolution was an
"arms race." The best a species can do to survive, he said, is to respond to an adversary's adaptations, ...
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/31/us/31valen.html?_r=1

SCIENCE

New Insight Into Gaseous and Dust Discs Around Stars
ScienceDaily (Oct. 30, 2010) -- Research by two Master's students from the University of Amsterdam's (UvA) Anton Pannekoek Astronomical Institute (IAP), offers
new insight into the structure of the gaseous and dust disc around a so-called 'Herbig Be' star. The measurements taken by the students led to a recent article in the scientific journal Astrophysical Journal Letters...
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101028074043.htm

Newly Discovered Gene Enables Fish to 'Disappear'
ScienceDaily (Oct. 29, 2010) -- Researchers led by Vanderbilt's Roger Cone, Ph.D., have discovered a new member of a gene family that has powerful influences on pigmentation and the regulation of body weight...
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101029132928.htm

Three-Dimensional Maps of Brain Wiring
ScienceDaily (Oct. 29, 2010) -- A team of researchers at the Eindhoven University of Technology has developed a software tool that physicians can use to easily study the wiring of the brains of their patients. The tool converts MRI scans using special techniques to three-dimensional images. This now makes it possible to view a total picture of the winding roads and their contacts without having to operate. Researcher Vesna Pr
ckovska defended her PhD thesis on this subject last week...
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101028073914.htm

Space Radar Provides a Taste of Comet Hartley 2
ScienceDaily (Oct. 29, 2010) -- Exactly one week before the world gets a new look at comet Hartley 2 via NASA's EPOXI mission, observations of the comet by the Arecibo Planetary Radar in Puerto Rico have offered scientists a tantalizing preview...
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101029124356.htm

Earth-Sized Planets May Be Common Throughout Our Galaxy, NASA Survey Suggests
ScienceDaily (Oct. 29, 2010) -- Nearly one in four stars similar to the sun may host planets as small as Earth, according to a new study funded by NASA and the University of California...
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101028141430.htm

Tracking Evidence of 'The Great Dying'
ScienceDaily (Oct. 29, 2010) -- More than 251 million years ago, at the end of the Permian period, Earth almost became a lifeless planet. Around 90 percent of all living species disappeared then, in what scientists have called "The Great Dying."...
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101028113614.htm

The Unhealthy Ego: What Can Neuroscience Tell Us About Our 'Self'?
ScienceDaily (Oct. 29, 2010) -- With Election Day right around the corner, political egos are on full display. One might even think that possessing a "big ego" is a prerequisite for success in politics, or in any position of leadership. High achievers-CEO's, top athletes, rock stars, prominent surgeons, or scientists-often seem to be well endowed in ego...
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101028113618.htm

Brain's Journey from Early Internet to Modern-Day Fiber Optics: Computer Program Shows How Brain's Complex Fiber Tracks Mature
ScienceDaily (Oct. 29, 2010) -- The brain's inner network becomes increasingly more efficient as humans mature. Now, for the first time without invasive measures, a joint study from the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) and the University of Lausanne (UNIL), in collaboration with Harvard Medical School, has verified these gains with a powerful new computer program...
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101027092205.htm

SEPARATION CHURCH / STATE

Embracing partisanship, judge candidates weigh in on abortion, God in courts
Minnesota Independent
"I don't know if we've had any Muslim jurists yet, and I'm sure we've had some great atheist jurists." What does that quote tell the public about their ...
http://minnesotaindependent.com/71656/dan-griffith-greg-wersal-tim-tingelstad-conservative-judicial-candidate

A Madison group that supports the separation of church-and-state loses a court ...
Pierce County Herald
A Madison group that supports the separation of church-and-state lost a court battle in Denver yesterday. A district judge said Colorado Governor Bill ...
http://www.piercecountyherald.com/event/article/id/30138/

Student asks court to reconsider 'silent prayer' ruling
Chicago Breaking News - Tribune (blog)
Sherman, the daughter of atheist activist Rob Sherman, filed her lawsuit after the legislature amended the statute in 2007. Sherman, 17, is now a senior at ...
http://www.chicagobreakingnews.com/2010/11/buffalo-grove-appeals-court-decision-on-moment-of-silent-prayer.html

Churches key to fugitive surrender programs
Dayton Daily News
Advocates of separation of church and state worry that such programs blur the line between government and religion. "If you have government officials in a ...
http://www.daytondailynews.com/news/ohio-news/churches-key-to-fugitive-surrender-programs-992932.html

Courthouse Panel Readies For Another Controversial Season Of Displays
Leesburg Today
The main body of the banner will include language recognizing the principle of separation of church and state, and text that reads, "Religion is the ...
http://www.leesburg2day.com/articles/2010/11/03/news/9450displays110310.txt

MISCELLANEOUS

The Self Shelf: The Trial of Christine O'Donnell
The Brandeis Hoot
When Pelosi pointed that this was not a refutation of the charges, O'Donnell tried to claim her acts were protected under the separation of church and state ...
http://thebrandeishoot.com/articles/8857

Police given advice on witches and pagans
Telegraph.co.uk
It adds: "Atheists have no dietary requirements other than those of the individual." It also gives officers a handy guide to key atheist philosophers, ...
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/8098613/Police-given-advice-on-witches-and-pagans.html
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