Category Archives: Humanist Movement

A Humanist You Should Know: Dr. Carter G. Woodson

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image of Dr. Carter G. Woodson: Humanist and father of Black History Month
Dr. Carter G. Woodson: Humanist and father of Black History Month

February is Black History Month in the United States. Did you know that one of the people responsible for what we now know as Black History Month was a Humanist? Dr. Carter G. Woodson (1875 – 1950) was a historian, author, journalist and the founder of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. Woodson was one of the first scholars to study African-American history.
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In Some Countries Atheism Is A Death Sentence

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cover to The IHEU Freedom of Thought Report 2013On Tuesday December 10th, the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) released a report titled ‘The IHEU Freedom of Thought Report 2013′ which focused specifically on the rights, legal status, and discrimination against Humanists, atheists and the non-religious in every country in the world. While the worse result of being a freethinker could be death, there was some kind of discrimination in most countries including the United States.
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The Religious Should Not Define Humanism

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image showing an abstract word cloud focused on Secular HumanismOne of my pet peeves about the Humanist movement is that some support the use of religious words or activities in Humanist settings. Using such words in the context of a nontheistic philosophy like Humanism not only causes public confusion but also dilutes our message and shows a lack of conviction of our own principles, not to mention it is a bit silly. We should define ourselves and not let the religious do it.
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Drew Stedman And The Cosmic Nothings Are A Freethinking Joy

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photo of Drew Stedman And The Cosmic Nothings
Drew Stedman And The Cosmic Nothings

Freethought music, in my view, tends to sound like warmed over folk music most of the time, so when a singer or group comes along that sounds like something you would hear on a commercial radio station, I get really happy. Drew Stedman and The Cosmic Nothings is such a group. They are releasing their debut self-titled EP and I love the music. Even though the lyrics and themes are specifically about religious dissent and freethought, it sounds polished and modern. Give them a listen.
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For Humanists, It Should Be About Community

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Happy Humanist with word CommunityI previously posted about my complaints about some Humanists forming ‘churches’ or creating ‘congregations’. My concern has always been about using warmed over religious words like ‘congregation’ or having ‘services’ on a Sunday. I explained that using religious words for non-religious activities causes confusion and doesn’t explain what we Humanists are really about. So in this post I want to explain how being honest in the terms we use will actually lead more people joining us.
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Dr. Ellery Schempp – A Humanist You Should Know

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photo of Ellery Schempp in 2012
Ellery Schempp’s protest of required Bible reading in his High School lead to the case Abington School District v. Schempp being decided in 1963

Fifty years ago today, the US Supreme Court handed down their landmark decision Abington School District v. Schempp that struck down a Pennsylvania law that mandated Bible reading in the public schools. The case started with a protest in 1956 by then High School student Ellery Schempp. His case showed us the importance of dissent and that mandatory Bible reading, in public schools, infringes on religious liberty. It’s great that Dr. Schempp is still active in the struggle to protect the 1st Amendment and he is definitely a Humanist you should know.
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