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I just had a lovely interview with a reporter from the Associated Press. That’s good enough news, of course — AP serves 1,700 newspapers and 5,000 radio and television outlets in the US alone and a lot more internationally. One AP story that mentions PBB can potentially generate more exposure than everything else we’ve done to this point.

But that’s not what has me blogging. What’s most exciting to me is the topic. The article is not about Parenting Beyond Belief. It’s not even about religion. It’s about values — in this case, specifically how to help our kids de-emphasize consumerism and greed during the holidays.

She’d get some thoughts from religious folks, she said, but it occurred to her that nonreligious parents would also have thoughts about it and strategies for keeping kids from falling into the me me me loop–and she thought I’d be a good person to address it.

I just had to agree. On both points. Heh.

This kind of thing happens all the time in the UK and elsewhere in Europe. When The Guardian in London does a story that touches on values, they check in with various reps of the national clergy, but they quite frequently also get a statement from the British Humanist Association. When I lived in London in 2004, I had to see that happen in three different stories before I stopped spraying coffee all over the paper. In Norway, I’m told, when the topic is values, the papers often get a quote from the humanists instead of the clergy. (The Norwegian Humanist Association has 70,000 members in a country with the same population as Greater Houston.)

Is it possible, just possible, that humanists in the U.S. are beginning to enter the values conversation on an equal footing? Might we even be on the verge of being considered…(I’ll whisper it)…normal?

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Dale McGowan is the author of Parenting Beyond Belief, Raising Freethinkers, and Atheism for Dummies. He holds a BA in evolutionary anthropology and a PhD in music.