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Welcome to the American Freethought podcast! American Freethought was produced from 2007 to 2016 and ran 265 episodes. We're currently featuring encore releases of all episodes, one a day, starting on January 1, 2017. If you like what you hear, please share with your friends. For more content (blog posts and not just podcast episodes) visit AmericanFreethought.com. Thanks!

Jun 14, 2013

After a local politician in Manchester, Tennessee posted an anti-Muslim image online, the American Muslim Advisory Council organized a public event aimed at encouraging discussion of religion diversity and informing citizens about the difference between free speech and hate crimes. The locals were less than receptive, booing, heckling and shouting down the speakers.

A high school valedictorian in Pickens County, South Carolina ripped up his pre-approved speech and instead recited the Lord's Prayer--all in protest of school policy prohibiting sectarian prayers at school events.

The House of Representatives are appalled at the idea of allowing Humanists, Ethical Culturalists, and members of similar nonreligious groups to be chaplains in the US military. Never mind that there are plenty of soldiers who share those views and who deserve counseling from someone who shares their worldview.

There's a slow trickle of churches dissociating themselves from the Boy Scouts in response to their recent policy change, which allows gay scouts but not gay scout leaders. It remains to be seen if this trickle will become a torrent.

Finally, we discuss The Revisionaries, a new documentary that looks at the recent (largely successful) attempt at religious conservatives to skew the Texas public school toward their worldview. The documentary is available on SundanceNow, Netflix, and elsewhere. For more visit TheRevisionariesMovie.com.

Plus: John recommends the late Muhammad Asad's memoir The Road to Mecca, as well as the recent documentary about him. Asad was born in 1900 as Leopold Weiss, a secular Jew from the Austro-Hungarian Empire, who converted to Islam in his 20s, hobnobbed with all the movers and shakers in the Middle East, wrote a translation with commentary of the Quran that's still in print, and went on to be one of the architects of Pakistan's constitution and that country's delegate to the United Nations.