here’s a pivotal scene in freethinker Lorraine Hansberry’s 1959 play A Raisin in the Sunin which matriarch Lena Younger tries to put the fear of God in her rebellious, politically conscious daughter Beneatha. Beneatha, an Afrocentric atheist, has been mouthing off about God’s non-existence and irrelevance, proclaiming “Mama…it’s all a matter of ideas and God […]
im Davis. Ben Carson. Donald Trump. The GOP clown car. The Planned Parenthood attacks. The Pope’s misogynistic anti-abortion “forgiveness” gesture. After a brief holding pattern, the resurgence of aggressive Christian fascist dogma and moral policing of women’s bodies is back on the rise. The GOP’s full-throated embrace of its reactionary standard bearers—God, gays, guns and […]
Tina Dupuy: We’re a nation of mainly Christians but not even really good Christians. We go to church as much as Europeans, we just lie about it more. Churches are closing down and filing for bankruptcy, yet Americans tell pollsters they’re in church every Sunday.
Claude Fischer: A global effort, perhaps tongue in cheek, landed in the U.S. to provide “Sunday Assemblies” with the music and the community of churches, leaving out the God of churches
Sikivu Hutchinson: The performance of religious fervor reconfirmed what I’d already known about black women’s organizing—namely, that social justice through faith-based communities was still the foundation for not just activism, but identity, self-affirmation and self-determination.
Benjamin Zeller: Rick Perry may fill stadiums for rallies and he may even win the GOP nomination for President, but unlike Ike he will never be able to claim the mantle of a united Big Religion for himself.
Sikivu Hutchinson: Congregants of Zion Hill Baptist Church in South Los Angeles probably thought Pastor Seth Pickens was certifiable when he proposed a community dialogue with the L.A. Black Skeptics Group.
Sikivu Hutchinson: Sadly, there is still a fair amount of ignorance and bigotry toward black non-believers in African American communities due to the stereotype that atheists are immoral, rudderless, and not authentically black.
Sikivu Hutchinson: The bashing of Elizabeth Edwards is just a footnote to the larger trend of right wing demonization of secular and left forces reignited by the Tea Party. This trend builds on Cold War “better-dead-than-Red” hysteria equating patriotism and “authentic” American citizenship with being god-fearing.
Sikivu Hutchinson: The mental health crisis amongst African Americans is a devastating indicator of racial and social inequity, of which the prayer as therapy epidemic is an insidious symptom. Frederick Douglass once wrote, “I prayed for twenty years and received no answer until I prayed with my legs.” What would Douglass, a trailblazing male feminist, have made of the brutal ironies of twenty first century black America?
Ron Wolff: I don’t quarrel with the Boy Scouts’ right to determine its own membership qualifications, although I think what they’ve done is short-sighted in the least and actually downright bigoted. (Other organizations serving young people — the Girl Scouts, Campfire, Boys and Girls Clubs, and probably a host of others — have seen the light.) What I don’t understand is the desire to celebrate and applaud discrimination, unless of course you approve of those views yourself.