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What's New Archive2001June


June 29, 2001

Added Sleeping with Extraterrestrials (2001) by Wendy Kaminer
This speech was delivered before the twenty-third annual national convention of the Freedom From Religion Foundation in St. Paul, Minnesota, on Sept. 16, 2000, where Wendy Kaminer was named "Freethought Heroine" 2000.
Added "World Peace Now" by Jan Brazill to the Agora section of the Kiosk.
If you could do something to bring about World Peace, wouldn't you want to try?
Added "The 4th of July and Freedom" by William Edelen to the Agora section of the Kiosk.
Both men, Jefferson and Adams, had total contempt for the Christian church and Christianity in general. I have often wondered why no teacher has the guts to teach these facts in our public schools?

June 28, 2001

Updated the Events Section.
The Freethinkers of Colorado Springs sponsor the debate: Is Christianity more Effective than Humanism in Achieving a Moral Society? (Representing the Humanistic View: Dr. Keith Parsons.  Representing the Theistic View: Dr. O. Gerald Trigg.) on 10 August in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Click here for more information.

June 27, 2001

Updated the Events Section.
The Idaho Atheists will hold their 3rd annual Summer Solstice on 30 June in Boise, Idaho. Click here for more information.

June 23, 2001

Added Is God A Criminal? (2001) by Bill Schultz
If there is a new basic morality working its way through humanity right now, it is based upon this concept of our having empathy for all humans, no matter what sort of human they might be. In other words, everybody is now part of the "us" group, and is to be protected, respected, and cherished, with the same moral privileges as anybody else we know. It is this exact overarching moral rule which is totally at odds with the whole Judeo-Christian God. The God who would send most of mankind to Hell for disbelieving in Him cannot command the respect of those who adhere to, or advocate, this new universal human morality. Accordingly, we must now be on the brink of the Humanist millennium, as there will be no place in the 21st century for the Christian bigots of the 20th century.

June 22, 2001

Added The Sinai Argument (2001) by Shlomi Tal
As do fundamentalist Christians with the empty tomb, Orthodox Jews base their faith on the alleged historical fact of the revelation at Mount Sinai, and some sects of Christianity ultimately presume the historicity of that event as well. This essay rebuts one argument for the historicity of a public revelation put forward by Rabbi Yehuda Halevi and Rabbi Dr. Dovid Gottlieb.
Added Our Meaning in Life (2001) by Richard Carrier to the Agora section of the Kiosk.
Is life pointless? Why should the atheist bother? It's all just going to end anyway, right? Answers enclosed.

June 19, 2001

Updated the Events Section.
The Jewish Socialists' Group will hold a public meeting/forum.  Speakers:  Keith Porteous-Wood (National Secular Society), Ann Krisman (RE teacher),  and Julia Bard (member Women Against Fundamentalism and editor Jewish Socialist) on 11 July in London, England. Click here for more information.
The New York City Atheists will hold their monthly meeting on 24 June in New York City, New York.   Click here for more information.

The South Carolina Atheists will hold their monthly meeting on 7 July in Greenville, South Carolina.   Click here for more information.

Added Why I'm Agnostic (2001) by B. Steven Matthies to Testimonials.
Matthies writes: "The decision to choose agnosticism over Christianity was not an easy choice. In fact, it has taken me over 20 years to finally reach this point." He relates his path and his reasons, and recommends some readings to boot.
Added Brill's Content and Philo to the Magazines page.
Brill's Content is the only magazine published by a large-scale professional news agency that critically examines and reports on all media, turning the tables by writing hard-hitting journalism on the journalists, as well as the companies and publications they work for. Every skeptic should be aware of this valuable periodical, whose motto is "Skepticism is a virtue." Philo is published by the Society of Humanist Philosophers, and is an academic, peer-reviewed journal that professionally and logically explores philosophical issues related to secular humanism.
Moved The Philosophical Lexicon from Reference Desk to Humor.

June 15, 2001

Updated the Internet Infidels FAQ.
Removed obsolete information and added essential and new information throughout.

June 14, 2001

Updated the Events Section.
The Ontario Skeptics will host a debate on "Intelligent Design." between: Dr. Gary Chiang (Biology, Redeemer University College) and Dr. Laurence A. Moran (Biochemistry, U of Toronto) on 15 June in Toronto, Ontario.  Click here for more information.
Added "How Not to Refute the Historicity and Resurrection of Jesus: A Critique of Dennis McKinsey's Encyclopedia of Biblical Errancy" (2001) by Jeffery Jay Lowder
"Although McKinsey occasionally raises some good points concerning the Resurrection and the extrabiblical references to Jesus, they are often hidden within many more objections that are either irrelevant, fallacious, or both. Moreover, there are many important issues related to the historicity of Jesus and the Resurrection, which McKinsey ignores. ... Given these shortcomings in the sections on the historicity and resurrection of Jesus, I can't help but wonder what deficiencies exist in the rest of McKinsey's Encyclopedia. I do not recommend skeptics rely on McKinsey's scholarship without first independently verifying his claims in a reliable source."
Added Adherents.Com to the Reference Desk.
This site contains adherent statistics and demographics for over 4,200 religions, churches, denominations, religious bodies, faith groups, tribes, cultures, movements, ultimate concerns, etc. Though the information provided is of varying quality, its wealth and scope makes it of great interest.
Added "God, Atheism and Incompatibility: The Argument from Nonbelief" (2001) by Philip Kuchar.
Kuchar defends an Argument from Nonbelief against God's existence (ANB) similar to that argued by J. L. Schellenberg, which differs in some respects from that argued by Theodore Drange. In short, the mere existence of nonbelievers or the presence of sufficient evidence for nonbelief in God's existence is incompatible with God given a certain description of him.

June 12, 2001

Added the Facts for Thought Column (Off Site) to the Columns page.
A great monthly column by Dr. Thomas for SecularSouth, the website of the Alabama Freethought Association. Topics range from odd passages in the Bible to current issues in state-church separation or secular life.
Added an Internet Infidels Reference Desk to the Library
A select array of very useful online resources for secularists and students of religion.
Added "The Argument from Consciousness Refuted" (2001) by Steven Conifer.
In an essay derived from his longer work "Mind-Brain Dependence as Twofold Support for Atheism," Conifer employs both rigorous informal argumentation and formal logic so as to thoroughly debunk the popular theistic argument that human consciousness entails God's existence. The essay includes a critical appraisal of the version of the argument put forward by the theistic philosopher Richard Swinburne.
Added "The Argument from Reason for the Nonexistence of God" (2001) by Steven Conifer.
Conifer first formulates his (evidential) atheological argument as applied to the most common concept of deity and then assesses both various defenses of God's existence against the argument and several objections to those defenses. His thesis is that each of the defenses succumbs to at least one of the objections. He thus concludes that his is a forceful and cogent case for atheism with respect to the given concept of God.
Added "Mind-Brain Dependence as Twofold Support for Atheism" (2001) by Steven Conifer.
Conifer presents a pair of parallel (evidential) atheological arguments whose basic premise appeals to the empirical and conceptual implausibility of disembodied consciousness. He critically examines and refutes numerous objections to his two arguments. Accordingly, he concludes that both of them constitute potent demonstrations of God's nonexistence.
Added "Zens' New Defense of TAG" (2001) by Michael Martin.
Martin responds to presuppositionalist Adam Spurgeon Zens' discussion of Reichenbach.

June 11, 2001

Updated the about page to add a real audio interview with Secular Web Editor-in-chief Richard Carrier on metaphysical naturalism, our goals, philosophy, and the future of nonbelief.

Added "A Plea for Rationalism" by Mohammad Akram Gill to the Agora section of the Kiosk.

Some irrational beliefs in several different religions have been out and a plea is made for considering the conventional beliefs rationally. Specific examples of such irrationalism are given.
Added "A Freethoughtful Idea" by Brandon Seger to the Agora section of the Kiosk.
A short fiction story about a student's attempt to begin a freethought club on his high school campus.
Updated the Events Section.
The Central Chapter of The Freethinkers of Upstate New York will hold their monthly meeting on 16 June at Noon in the North Onondaga Public Library, Brewerton, New York.  Click here for more information.

"The Onion: A Presentation by Tim Harrod."  A talk sponsored by the Campus Freethought Alliance and University at Buffalo Freethought Alliance will be held on 22 June at 8:00 P.M.at the University at Buffalo North Campus, Buffalo, New York.   Click here for more information.

The Capital District Chapter of The Freethinkers of Upstate New York will hold their monthly meeting on 24 June at 2:00 P.M. in Colonie, New York.    Click here for more information.

Charlotte Poe, sponsored by the Center for Inquiry-West, speaks on Sex Lives of the Popes on 1 July in  Los Angeles California.Click here for more information.

The Center for Inquiry West will hold their monthly Singles Night on 03 July in Marina Del Rey, California.   Click here for more information.

June 9, 2001

Added a link to "A Verdict on Josh McDowell" (Off Site) (2000) by Gordon B. Hazen
A detailed rebuttal to some of McDowell's specific claims in chapter 4 in ETDAV.

June 8, 2001

Added "My Religion, Right or Wrong" by Eric Tallberg to the Agora section of the Kiosk.
How can Christians continue to ignore the anti-Semitism inherent in their fundamental doctrine?

June 7, 2001

Updated "Historical Evidence and the Empty Tomb Story: A Reply to William Lane Craig" (2001) by Jeffery Jay Lowder
Lowder made several changes (mostly cosmetic) in order to clarify his position on a number of issues.

June 6, 2001

Added "Thus Spoke Zarathustra's Fellow" by Daniel Berry to the Agora section of the Kiosk.
A parable for those of you whose godless view of life is much more than a body of abstract ideas.

June 5, 2001

Added From Taoist to Infidel (2001) by Richard Carrier to the Testimonials section of the Modern Library.
Richard Carrier describes his own spiritual journey, how he came from a background as a Taoist in a Christian country to become a fighter for secular humanism and metaphysical naturalism.
Updated the Who Are the Internet Infidels section of the FAQ.
Molleen Matsumera was elected Vice President of the Internet Infidels, Richard Carrier was appointed Editor in Chief of the Secular Web, and James Still is now engaged in software development for Internet Infidels, Inc.

June 4, 2001

Updated the Atheism subject index of the Modern Library
Reorganized and reformatted the subject index.
Added a About Atheism index page in the Atheism section of the Modern Library
This index provides links to various introductions to atheism, including its definition; its relationship to agnosticism, theism, and noncognitivism; and its value.

June 2, 2001

Updated the Events Section.
Atheists of Silicon Valley present "Is Science a Religion?" video lecture by Professor Richard Dawkins on 19 June at 7:30 P.M. in
Mountain View, California  Click here for more information.

June 1, 2001

Added Reichenbach on the Problem of Induction (2001) (Off Site) by Adam Spurgeon Zens.
The latest in an ongoing debate between Zens and Michael Martin over the Transcendental Argument for God. Zens responds to Martin's counter-rebuttal by appealing to the arguments of Hans Reichenbach.

See "What's New? " for past months.