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Infidels, Freethinkers, Humanists, and Unbelievers
Haught, James A.

"During a recent evolution showdown, a visiting "creation scientist" from California repeatedly challenged me to debate, because I support the teaching of evolution. A Charleston talk radio host blistered me on the air because I would not come on his show and quarrel with the creationist professor. But I felt it would be silly for me to argue about his supernatural beliefs. After all, I would not debate a Scientologist who asserts that all human souls are "thetans" from another planet. And I would not quarrel with a Unification Church member's claim that Jesus appeared to Master Moon and told him to convert all people as "Moonies." And I would not dispute a Mormon's belief that Jesus visited prehistoric America. And so on, and so on. Let them all believe whatever they want. It is pointless to go on radio shows and wrangle over mystical claims. However, such claims must not be imposed on captive children in government-owned schools. That is prohibited by the separation of church and state, a core principle in the First Amendment in America's Bill of Rights. "

-- James A. Haught

Currently the editor of the Charleston Gazette in West Virginia, Mr. Haught has spent more than 50 years as an investigative journalist, columnist, and author. A self-proclaimed skeptic and agnostic, Haught writes and lectures frequently on religious topics, particularly injustices and atrocities committed in the name of religion, and the scientific debunking of supernatural claims.

He is the author of five books, including Holy Horrors: An Illustrated History Of Religious Murder and Madness; Holy Hatred: Religious Conflicts Of The '90s; and 2000 Years of Disbelief, a paean to freethinkers, atheists, and religious doubters. Haught also serves as a senior editor at Free Inquiry magazine, published by the Council for Secular Humanism.

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The Talk Of Lawrence