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Support secularism in Chilliwack schools

Controversy has erupted in Chilliwack after Richard Ajabu protested his school board’s policy that explicitly permits the distribution of Gideon Bibles to Grade 5 children (with permission slips produced by the Gideons).

The Board recently reviewed the policy in a closed-door meeting and decided to uphold it.

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Chilliwack School Board policy deemed discriminatory by secularists

The British Columbia Humanists Association is calling on the Chilliwack School Board to reverse its policy of distributing Gideon Bibles in local public schools.

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Humanism and animal rights

A few weeks ago I was invited to contribute an essay on the Humanist position on animal rights for the Vancouver Humane Society quarterly newsletter. The edition is out and available online in PDF form. I’ve also reproduced my essay below.

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Atheists give generously to fight blood cancer

Local atheists and skeptics raised $3,778 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society as part of an international effort to raise money for the Light the Night Walk.

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Humanists oppose Kamloops pro-life banner

The BC Humanist Association calls on the Mayor and City Council of Kamloops to remove the Protect Human Life banners that have recently appeared around the city.

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Rescind anti-choice proclamation

Last year our organization wrote to then Kelowna Mayor Sharon Shepherd to protest the decision to proclaim Protect Human Life Week. We have reiterated our opposition to this decision to again proclaim this Week in a joint letter to Mayor Walter Gray, commissioned by the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada.  The BC Humanist Association continues to see this proclamation as an affront to women’s legal rights and the separation of church and state.

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Humanism leads to atheism

A couple weeks ago I wrote that “Humanism makes belief in God irrelevant.” I ended that essay stating,

So while being a humanist doesn’t really mean you need to be an atheist, it doesn’t leave much room for any god worth believing in.

Since writing that piece, I’ve done quite a bit of thinking about this topic and have realized that I was mistaken. This thinking has been motivated by two sources.

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Humanism makes belief in god irrelevant

I was at Skeptics in the Pub at the Billy Bishop and was asked a question that took me off guard for a second.

After more thought, I finally have my answer.

The question was posed by someone I later learned was a Christian who was checking out the skeptics group. He asked me, “do you have to be an atheist to be a humanist?”

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Gloria Taylor retains right to die with dignity

Good news yesterday for those who support the right of Canadians to die with dignity.

The BC Court of Appeal has upheld the right of Gloria Taylor to have doctors hasten her death.

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Humanism is social justice

There is an ongoing debate in the wider, online, Freethought/secular/skeptic community.

While I don’t want to rehash the specifics, name names, or argue the semantics, it does highlight what I consider to be a divide between humanism and mere atheism.

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