Posted inEducation, General

Moment of Forced Silence Implemented in Illinois

Reading Time: 2 minutes The Chicago Tribune ran an article today about the now-mandatory moment of silence in public schools across the state. “I think it’s ridiculous,” said Mark Merklin, a sophomore at South Elgin High. “What’s the punishment if you talk all through the moment of silence? Is there a fine or what?” … Neil Codell, superintendent of […]

Posted inEducation, Parenting & Family

the Quéstion of Québec

Reading Time: 3 minutes Il est faux de penser que la religion rend la mort plus acceptable. À preuve, les rites funéraires sont marqués par des moments d’intense tristesse. Et la plupart des croyants ont peur de la mort et font leur possible pour retarder sa venue! Demandez-lui si elle avait peur avant de venir au monde. Elle risque […]

Posted inCritical thinking, Education, Science

a brush with relevance

Reading Time: 3 minutes (Being the first in a series of reports on the 2007 convention of the Atheist Alliance International in Washington DC.) I don’t have many genuine heroes. Carl Sagan set the bar pretty high when I was thirteen. Since then I’ve generally required a combination of intelligence, lucidity, and courage from applicants to my private Valhalla. […]

Posted inEducation

i’d like to buy another consonant

Reading Time: 2 minutes Went with Delaney to the “Dads ‘n’ Donuts” event at her school the other day. A fine selection. We finished eating and socializing in the gym a bit early, so we sauntered back to her kindergarten classroom. A couple of dads were already there, being toured by the hand around the classroom by their progeny. […]

Posted inEducation, General

Atheists' Home Vandalized

Reading Time: < 1 minute Perhaps in response to Rob Sherman‘s atheist activism or his daughter’s recent (successful) campaign to get God Bless America off of the Homecoming Dance song list at her high school, the family evoked a response from the suburban Chicago community. Their home was vandalized Friday night: … with eggs tossed at the house and cars, […]

Posted inEducation

Keep an Eye on This Student

Reading Time: < 1 minute Ms. SuperScience at Beautiful Biology gave her AP Biology students a questionnaire to fill out during the first week of school. She asked the kids a number of questions so she can learn about who they are and what makes them tick. Fairly normal procedure. Now, look at one student’s response to the prompt, “Tell […]

Posted inEducation, Parenting & Family

i’d like to buy a consonant

Reading Time: 2 minutes It’s not that I’m spoiling for a fight. Like I said, I’m not about to start shooting my mouth off about church-state boundaries here in the dawning months of our entry to the Deep South unless my kids come home from school with John 3:16 tattooed to their foreheads. In permanent ink. A little temporary […]

Posted inEducation

this ain’t your grandpappy’s Atlanta

Reading Time: 3 minutes I spent the first Sunday morning in our new Atlanta home heaving worldly possessions from our PODS (Portable On Demand Storage, highly recommended) container to the garage in 95-degree heat. At 10 o’clock I caught the eye of a neighbor mowing his lawn. He nodded and smiled. I nodded and smiled. Not in church, eh? […]