DECEMBER 2, 2010
Volume 6, Issue 46
Published by the Center For Atheism (CFA)
Editor: David Birnkrant
The Focusprovides 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:

Comments, suggestions and subscription:


Atheist Groups Promote a Holiday Message: Join Us
New York Times
Four separate and competing national organizations representing various streams of atheists, humanists and freethinkers will soon be spreading their gospel ...


OMG - did you see that billboard?
Paid for by public donations the billboard is part of a wider atheist campaign already seen in London, Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. ...

An unlikely atheist teaches others
Iowa State Daily
Bryan Langfeldt/Iowa State Daily Hector Avalos, professor of philosophy and religious studies, explains his reasoning and logic regarding being an atheist. ...

Atheist groups launch ad campaigns this holiday season
While many Christians cite the birth of Jesus as the "reason for the season," atheists and other godless groups aim to promote reason this holiday season. ...


A tournament of atheists, then and now
Globe and Mail
Proponents of atheism have found their comfort zone in the modern Western world, where penalties for infidelity are few but the residual sense of outrage is ...

Theater review: 'The Sunset Limited' at Theatre Theater
Los Angeles Times
White (Ron Bottitta) is a professor, a jaded atheist who lives in a world of abstract conceptualization; Black (Tucker Smallwood), an ex-con turned devout ...


Textbooks under siege in Louisiana
National Center for Science Education
... critics of the textbooks were reported to complain specifically that the textbooks under consideration lacked information about "intelligent design". ...


Cosmic Curiosity Reveals Ghostly Glow of Dead Quasar
ScienceDaily (Nov. 6, 2010) While sorting through hundreds of galaxy images as part of the Galaxy Zoo citizen science project two years ago, Dutch schoolteacher and volunteer astronomer Hanny van Arkel stumbled upon a strange-looking object that baffled professional astronomers. Two years later, a team led by Yale University researchers has discovered that the unique object represents a snapshot in time that reveals surprising clues about the life cycle of black holes...

'Prima Donna' Protein Doesn't Work Well in Pairs
ScienceDaily (Nov. 6, 2010) A new study by Rice University bioengineers finds that the workhorse proteins that move cargo inside living cells behave like prima donnas. The protein, called kinesin, is a two-legged molecular machine. Rice's scientists invented tools that could measure the pulling power of kinesin both singly and in pairs, and they have recently reported in Biophysical Journal that kinesins don't work well together -- in part because they are so effective on their own...

Self Awareness Can Help People Navigate Rocky Seas of Relationships
ScienceDaily (Nov. 6, 2010) A little self-awareness can help people struggling in the world of relationships, says Jeffrey Hall, assistant professor of communication studies at the University of Kansas...

DNA Fingerprinting Traces Global Path of Plague
ScienceDaily (Nov. 6, 2010) An international team of scientists has traced major plague pandemics such as the Black Death back to their roots using DNA fingerprinting analysis...

New Statistical Model Moves Human Evolution Back Three Million Years
ScienceDaily (Nov. 5, 2010) Evolutionary divergence of humans and chimpanzees likely occurred some 8 million years ago rather than the 5 million year estimate widely accepted by scientists, a new statistical model suggests...

Neanderthals Were More Promiscuous Than Modern Humans, Fossil Finger Bones Suggest
ScienceDaily (Nov. 5, 2010) Fossil finger bones of early human ancestors suggest that Neanderthals were more promiscuous than human populations today, researchers at the universities of Liverpool and Oxford have found...

Human Mind Uses Syntax to Interpret Actions
ScienceDaily (Nov. 5, 2010) Most people are familiar with the concept that sentences have syntax. A verb, a subject, and an object come together in predictable patterns. But actions have syntax, too; when we watch someone else do something, we assemble their actions to mean something, according to a new study published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science...

Damage to Prefrontal Cortex Compensated by Intact Areas; 'Phantom' Images Stored in Flexible Network Throughout Brain
ScienceDaily (Nov. 5, 2010) Brain research over the past 30 years has shown that if a part of the brain controlling movement or sensation or language is lost because of a stroke or injury, other parts of the brain can take over the lost function -- often as well as the region that was lost...

New Way to Peer at Distant Galaxies
ScienceDaily (Nov. 5, 2010) A team including University of Hertfordshire astronomers have discovered a new way of finding cosmic zoom lenses, which allows astronomers to peer at galaxies in the distant Universe...


Cape mayor wants to place Ten Commandments in City Hall
The News-Press
He has asked the city attorney's office to look into the highly controversial issue that calls to question the separation of church and state. ...

Mayor supports posting of Ten Commandments
NBC2 News
The city's mayor is now supporting the idea saying it isn'ta violation of the separation of church and state. Cape Coral's City Hall has seen its share of ...