Secular Sunday #65 – Chock Full of Godless Goodness
This week we have our usual news roundup, the best of Irish atheist blogs, and of course a list of upcoming events including a TV show tonight and this week’s return of Dublin Atheists in the Pub. We also have a profile of Kate Smurthwaite who’ll be speaking at our conference in June.
– Derek Walsh, Editor
Atheist Ireland News
- The remainder of Michael Nugent’s recent debate with John Waters is now online. Watch Michael’s and John’s closing speeches. All the videos of the debate (and many more) are available on our YouTube channel.
- Peter Ferguson has set up a Google group for atheists in Galway to interact and get to know each other better. Peter regularly organises events for NUI Galway’s Atheist and Humanist group, and his blog is frequently featured in Secular Sunday (including this week). Email Peter if you want to be added to the group.
Profile: Kate Smurthwaite
Every week until the Empowering Women through Secularism conference, we’ll be profiling one of the speakers.
Kate Smurthwaite is a British comedian, writer and political activist. She is the vice-chair and media spokesperson for Abortion Rights UK, and a member ofLondon Feminist Network and the National Secular Society. She regularly appears on British television and radio discussing politics, religion and feminism, has toured internationally and written for a number of newspapers and magazines.
Many atheists will likely recognise Kate from a clip of the BBC’s Big Questions that was shared on YouTube and viewed over two million times. (Below or here)
- Read Kate’s blog
- Follow Kate on Twitter
- Yes, Savita Halappanavar’s Death IS a Political Issue (Huffington Post)
- What’s wrong with choosing a museum over Poundland to volunteer at? (Liberal Conspiracy)
- Interview with Kate (What the Frock Comedy)
- Video of Kate performing for the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain
compiled by Barbara Monea
- Priest dismissed over complaints of child sexual abuse
- Former Christian Brother found guilty of sexually abusing boy at Letterfrack
- Campaign to reduce male suicides to be launched
- Gender pay gap in Ireland still ‘unacceptably’ wide
- ‘Big Brother’ plan to keep eye on doctors
- Test spared 50% of patients chemo
- You promised to deliver the Savita report, Dr Reilly, . . . so where is it?
- Pope wants better relations with Muslims and atheists
- Iranian Atheists: Waiting To Come Out
- World leaders flock to Rome for Pope Francis’ inauguration
- Pope considered quitting after he was ‘dazzled by girl’ at wedding
- Kenya condom advert pulled after religious complaints
- Church of Cyprus offers its assets to help the country
- Australia apologises for ‘unethical, dishonest and illegal’ forced adoptions
- Indian parliament to debate bill allowing death penalty for rapists
- Most doctors prescribe placebos
- Topless Tunisian Femen Protester ‘Amina’ Threatened With Death By Stoning
- Actor Roache: Sex abuse victims paying for past lives; abusers should be forgiven
- Hillary Clinton gives support to gay marriage
- USA: Support for same-sex marriage reaches all-time high, poll finds
- Somalia: Man ‘stoned to death for having sex with boy’
- Bachmann: It’s my Christian ‘duty’ to repeal Obamacare before it ‘literally kills’ kids
- Mosque bomb kills at least 42 in Damascus
- Transgender primary school teacher who ‘took own life’ had sought protection from media hounding before her death
- Pediatric Group Supports Same-Sex Marriage
- A ‘Religious Right’ to Not Counsel Gays?
- Alabama proposal to legalize Ten Commandments advances
- No one should be fired for being gay
- Michael Kelly: Change, yes – but it won’t please everyone
- Column: New HSE plans will further limit women’s choices in childbirth
- Michelle Obama: I quit a dream job to be at home, but I’m no surrendered wife
- What Science Really Says About the Soul
- Planck telescope maps light of the big bang scattered across the universe
- What is at the end of the tunnel?
- New research shows brain tumours can be killed with anti-nausea drug
- Tonight, Sunday 24 March, 10:30 pm, RTE 1
Atheist comedian Abie Philbin Bowman (pictured) will be featured on RTE’s Would You Believe?
- Thursday 28 March, 7:30 pm, Trinity Capital Hotel, Pearse St., Dublin 2 (map)
Dublin Atheists in the Pub. “Atheism and Abortion”. A frank and friendly discussion about a difficult topic, without the usual distraction of religious arguments. Facebook event page
- Monday 25 March, McSwiggans Bar and Restaurant, Woodquay, Galway (map)
Galway Skeptics in the Pub.Facebook event page
- Sunday 31 March, 12:00 noon, Galway Lawn Tennis Club, Galway (map)
Humanists West, Galway are having their monthly meeting.Facebook event page
- Saturday 6 April, 12:00 noon – 2:00 pm
Brendan Maher will be outside the GPO promoting atheism, secularism and humanism. Email Brendan if you want to help.
- Sunday 7 April, 4:00 pm, Buswell’s Hotel, Molesworth St., Dublin 2 (map)
Monthly meeting of the Humanist Association of Ireland. All are welcome.
- Sunday 14 April, 12:00 noon, multiple locations
The third Second Sunday brunch thing. If there’s one in your area, go to it. If there isn’t, arrange one and let us know.
- Saturday 29 & Sunday 30 June, O’Callaghan Alexander Hotel, Dubln 2 (map)
“Empowering Women Through Secularism” An international two-day conference featuring some of the biggest names in atheism, skepticism, secularism and feminism. Buy tickets now
We had, and I believe we still have, the potential to combine the best contributions of many good people on all perceived ‘sides’ of the rifts, who are currently unable or unwilling to work together, because they have been unfairly misrepresented and hurt by people who in turn have been unfairly misrepresented and hurt by others. – Michael Nugent proposes an agenda for structured dialogue among atheists and skeptics
I, and many other same-sex marriage advocates, are certainly not fond of the Iona Institute but to label them a hate group is a stretch too far. It would disingenuous and hyperbolic to apply this label as they do not practice open hostility or violence towards homosexuals. However, what about bigoted? – Peter Ferguson asks some questions about the Iona Institute
It is generally considered a truism these days to state that from the foundation of the Republic, the Catholic Church has had a large part to play in the running of the country. Legislation was passed or defeated on the whims of Catholic interests, social norms and conventions were passed down from the pulpit to the worshippers in the pews, and most shamefully, thousands of women and children were forced into what was essentially slave labour in the country’s Industrial Schools and Magdalene Laundries. – Bryan Wall discusses the decline of the Catholic Church in Ireland