I will be speaking at two events over the next two days.

I will be talking at the Irish Skeptics’ first public lecture of 2015 on Wednesday, on the topic ‘Tough on ideas, supportive of people – How atheist and skeptic groups can be robust, inclusive and ethical’.

Date and Time: Wednesday, 4 March at 8 pm
Venue: Abbey Room, Wynn’s Hotel, Lower Abbey Street, Dublin 1
Admission: €3 members and concessions €6 non-members

I will be debating at the UCD Islamic Society on Thursday, with Abdullah Andalusi, on the topic of ‘Freedom of speech or right to insult’.

Date and Time: Thursday, 5 March at 6.30 pm
Venue: Theatre O, Newman building, University College Dublin

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I had a Twitter exchange today with Irish Catholic editor Michael Kelly, that reminded me of our recent RTE radio debate when he denied that the Bible says that Jews are of their father the devil. In fairness, he acknowledged when I next met him that it does say that, but since the original exchange ended unresolved on RTE, I think it’s best to clarify the position publicly here.

The quote in the Bible is from Jesus in John 8:44. That’s the passage that starts with the story of the adulteress and ‘let he who is without sin cast the first stone’. However, that story was added centuries later. In the original John 8, Jesus has an argument with the Jews in the Temple, who decide to stone him, so he hides and then runs away.

Here is a transcript of the relevant part of the RTE interview.

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I discussed the ethics of Catholic aid and condoms with Eithne McNulty of Trocaire, philosopher Julian Baggini and host Audrey Carville on BBC Radio Ulster Sunday Sequence today. This is an extract from a longer discussion on the ethics of religious aid generally.

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Please sign this One Law For All petition, asking the Bangladeshi Government to prosecute the Islamists who killed Avijit Roy and to protect freethinkers.

Like Mukto-muna, we are united in our grief and remain undefeated

We are outraged by the senseless and brutal hacking to death of well known scientist, atheist and writer Avijit Roy and the serious attack on his wife and blogger, Rafida Ahmed Bonya, by Islamists in Bangladesh.

Avijit had received numerous threats over the years for publishing articles critical of Islam, and promoting secular views, science and social issues on the Bengali-language blog, Mukto-mona (Free Mind), which he founded. He had travelled to Bangladesh from the US to attend a book fair where his book “The Virus of Faith” was being launched. It was whilst he was returning from the fair, that he was brutally killed.

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Tough on ideas, supportive of people – my talk to the Irish Skeptics next week, Wed 4th March

February 24, 2015

I will be talking at the Irish Skeptics’ first public lecture of 2015 on Wednesday, March 4th, on the topic ‘Tough on ideas, supportive of people – How atheist and skeptic groups can be robust, inclusive and ethical’. Date and Time: Wednesday, 4th March at 8pm Venue: Abbey Room, Wynn’s Hotel, Lower Abbey Street, Dublin […]

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How Irish schools evangelise children – my interview on KFM Radio

February 20, 2015

In this interview with Shane Beatty on KFM Radio, I discuss how Irish schools evangelise children into a particular religious belief system, despite being funded by the Irish State.

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This photo of Atheist Ireland meeting the Taoiseach is significant for who it does not include

February 19, 2015

This is part of the Atheist Ireland delegation that met the Taoiseach and Minister for Education last week, in the first formal meeting between an Irish Prime Minister and an atheist advocacy group in the history of the State. The photograph is significant for who it does not not include. Our delegation included a primary […]

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I’m confused. I don’t know who to believe about what I think.

February 18, 2015

Today Sarah Jones of Patheos called me a “far right hack” on Facebook. I’ve asked her to clarify what she is basing that opinion on. [Update: Sarah has clarified that she meant that my stance on Muslims and Islam is identical to what she would get on Fox News in the US.] Yet on Saturday, […]

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Chapel Hill killer Craig Hicks said his ethnicity is Native American, and he prefers Muslims to most Christians

February 16, 2015

I am reporting here information about what Craig Hicks has said online about his beliefs. I am not speculating about why he murdered his neighbours, because I do not have enough reliable information to do this. I have previously written about what his Facebook page actually tells us about his beliefs. I am writing here […]

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What does Chapel Hill killer Craig Hicks’ Facebook page actually tell us about his beliefs?

February 13, 2015

There has been some speculation that Craig Hicks’ atrocious murder of three neighbours in Chapel Hill was related to him being an atheist and his neighbours being Muslims. This speculation seems to be based largely on the content of his Facebook page. It is important that justice is brought about for the victims of these terrible […]

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