Doing It Wrong: Addressing Common Anti-Porn Arguments

Sex Shop

1. Introduction: Opening Up and Revealing Pornography has elicited at least as many heated words as it has orgasms. While the etymology of the word is clear and uncontroversial, defining pornography in a clear and unambiguous way has proven difficult. The word derives from the Greek compound porne (“prostitute”) and graphos (“to write”).[1] This compound word denoted “the depiction of […]

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Guest Post: The Fascinating World of Ghosthunting

This is a guest post written by Niels Böge Nothdurft from Denmark. Long before I learned about critical thinking and became a skeptic I was fascinated by all kinds of what I would call woo today. That fascination hasn’t stopped, just my perspective on it. One of the things that fascinated me a lot – and still does – is […]

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I Was a Teenage Apologist: My Journey from Christianity to Atheism

Deconversion

“Do not demand that your belief [in a personal God] be reasonable. You will be threatened with the loss of your faith. You may well lose your faith. Those who have lost their faith in God are generally those who have felt the need for good reasons, for evidence, for argument. Better that you should take as your slogan ‘credo […]

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The Dangers of Anti-Vaxxers and Bad News Reporting (Guest Post by Niels Böge Nothdurft)

gardasil

This is another guest post written by Niels Böge Nothdurft from Denmark. In this post, Niels discusses the popular fears surrounding the Gardasil vaccine in Denmark and how inaccurate and sensationalistic reporting in the news media contributed to these fears and helped promote dangerous anti-vaccination pseudoscience.   The number of Danish women who get the HPV vaccine known as Gardasil […]

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Rock ‘n’ Reverse: Skeptical Lessons from the Backward Masking Scare

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“Just ‘cause you feel it, doesn’t mean it’s there.” ~ Radiohead, “There There”   In the campy 1986 horror film Trick or Treat, directed by Michael Martin Smith and written by Rhet Topham, a devil-worshiping rock star named Sammi Curr meets an untimely death in a mysterious hotel fire. His biggest fan, a high school student with no friends and […]

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Why the Devil Has the Best Tunes: Rock Music, Satanism, and Religious Fear

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They say I worship the Devil / They must be stupid or blind / I’m just a rock ‘n’ roll rebel. ~ Ozzy Osbourne [1] In the summer of 1990, heavy rock music went on trial for murder. Five years before, two young adults named James Vance and Raymond Belknap of the small town of Sparks, Nevada spent a winter evening […]

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The Birth of a Skeptic (Guest Post by Niels Böge Nothdurft)

bertrand-russell

This is a guest post written by Niels Böge Nothdurft. Hailing from Denmark, Niels is a former member of the Zeitgeist Movement, the organization spawned by Peter Joseph’s Zeitgeist series of conspiracy-theory films. In this post, Niels relates his experience being a part of this movement and what led him to discard the organization and become an advocate of science-based […]

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Spirit of Paranoia: A Critical Analysis of “Zeitgeist” (Part III)

howard-beale

The third and final part of Peter Joseph’s Zeitgeist is by far the most fascinating – and perhaps the most delusional and paranoid – of the film’s three sections. Part III, titled “Don’t Mind the Men behind the Curtain,” takes a decidedly darker and more sinister turn. In the film’s previous chapter, we were assaulted with a barrage of media […]

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Spirit of Paranoia: A Critical Analysis of “Zeitgeist” (Part II)

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Part II of Peter Joseph’s Zeitgeist, titled “All the World’s a Stage,” describes the events of September 11, 2001 in a manner very similar to Dylan Avery’s 2005 conspiracy documentary Loose Change. In fact, many portions of Part II are pulled directly from Avery’s film. [1] In Joseph’s film, as in Loose Change, we are presented with the basic 9/11 conspiracy […]

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Spirit of Paranoia: A Critical Analysis of “Zeitgeist” (Part I)

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The discussions on the origins of Christianity in Zeitgeist may sound very compelling to those “village atheists” who make a hobby of searching for that elusive single argument that destroys Christianity as a credible belief system in one fell swoop. But any such easy argument is bound to be an oversimplification of historical or philosophical complexities. The main thesis presented […]

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