Paul is communications director for the Center for Inquiry, as well as an actor and musician. His blog is iMortal, and he tweets as @paulfidalgo, and the blog tweets as @iMortal_blog.
The opinions expressed on this blog are personal to Paul and do not necessarily represent the views of the Center for Inquiry.
A cheesecake comes out of the oven, it cools, and a crack on the top forms in the vague shape of a cross. Is it just an accident? Did someone just cut the shape into the cake? Or, as reporter Daniel Clark seems to ask without a trace of irony, “is this Jesus Christ coming back and showing support for this family’s religious beliefs?” Read more
Suzanne Moore at The Guardian writes about the thought process that went into holding some kind of celebratory ceremony for the birth of her third child (congratulations, by the way!). In doing so, however, she found that her desire for some form of ritual to mark the event conflicted with her desire to be “a good atheist.” Here’s how she explains the problem: She worries that “New Atheism,” whatever you believe that to be, “fixates on ethics, ignoring aesthetics at its peril,” and that “ultra-orthodox atheism has come to resemble a rigid and patriarchal faith itself.” Read more
This is a sad and frankly strange story. On Monday, Robert W. Wilson, a multimillionaire hedge fund mogul and philanthropist, jumped to his death from his high-rise apartment in New York, months after suffering a severe stroke, at age 86. The reason this story is here is because Wilson was an avowed atheist, but one whose substantial philanthropy was directed not just at causes one might expect (the environment, cultural heritage, wildlife, etc.), but to Catholic schools. Wilson had expressed a… Read more
Apparently it’s not enough to have invented the World Wide Web, but Tim Berners-Lee also has to infect the airwaves of the United Kingdom with his godless propaganda. For some time now, nonbelievers have been clamoring for representation on BBC radio’s “Thought for the Day” segment, which is always presented from a religious viewpoint. But in a stint as guest-editor for BBC 4’s Today, which hosts the segment, Berners-Lee was able to at least get an “alternative thought” for Boxing Day an hour earlier in the show, but notably, still wasn’t able to co-opt the “Thought for the Day” segment itself on behalf of atheism. Read more
Atheist bloggers and antiestablishment protesters aren’t the only ones with blasphemy charges leveled against them. Sometimes the victims are the well-to-do. In February, for example, Pakistan’s ambassador to the U.S., Sherry Rehman, was charged with the crime of blasphemy for, get this, criticizing the blasphemy law on television in 2010. And today in Pakistan (again), we have the case of Eraj Sajjad. According to The News International, Sajjad is the daughter of “a famous bureaucrat,” and had refused to take part in an arranged marriage. The would-be groom didn’t take kindly to the rejection, and filed blasphemy charges for allegedly “giving derogatory remarks on a very sensitive religious issue.” Read more