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Posted inWar and Peace

So this is 90 seconds to midnight

Reading Time: 4 minutes On January 24, the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists officially moved the hands on the Doomsday Clock, which for three quarters of a century has been used to depict humanity’s risk of global disaster from nuclear war. When the clock was first launched, on the cover of the June […]

Posted inThe Secular

Should Christmas trees be banned in tax-funded public spaces?

Reading Time: 3 minutes Although I’m a committed nontheist and ardent church-state separationist, I’m not inflexible about it. Which is to say I see no good reason to oppose Christmas trees, for example, in public, tax-supported spaces. It’s been a centuries-long American civic tradition to erect Christmas trees all over creation, so to speak—in public and private spaces—and these […]

Posted inReligion

Surprise! Empty pews are nonpartisan

Reading Time: 3 minutes It’s been common knowledge since the coronavirus pandemic arrived in America several years ago that empty pews have sharply increased, as churches, often controversially, closed their doors to protect congregants from spread of the deadly disease among their flocks. But in reading some year-old statistics on the pandemic’s effects on religious ritual, I was surprised […]

Posted inReligion

Captive audiences: Why Uber and Lyft are evangelicals’ newest mission field

Reading Time: 10 minutes Recently, Hemant Mehta asked a very good question: “Why are Lyft and Uber letting Christian drivers preach at passengers?” It’s a very good question. Uber and Lyft have not, as of this writing, explained why they allow this. Another good question is how evangelicals got to the point where preaching at captive audiences has become […]

Posted inLeaving Religion

Not so much better angels: Celebrating with the ghosts of Christmas past

Reading Time: 3 minutes Despite Catholicism lurking in the background, Christmas was a magical time when I was a kid. Jesus was watching but from a respectful distance. Even when my old aunties came to visit, he kept quiet. Well mostly. He apparently insisted we give him thanks for our meals and upper-middle-class lifestyle in sunny 1980s Southern California. […]

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