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Roy Speckhardt
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Roy Speckhardt is executive director of the American Humanist Association where he actively promotes the humanist perspective on progressive political issues. He’s appeared on CNN Headline News, Fox News, numerous national radio shows, and has spoken to dozens of local humanist groups across the country. He also serves as a board member of the Humanist Institute and the United Coalition of Reason and as an advisory board member of the Secular Student Alliance. He holds an M.B.A. from George Mason University and a B.A. in sociology from Mary Washington College. He lives in Washington DC.

Entries by Roy Speckhardt

War on Christianity?

(585) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 2:18 PM

When Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House, was asked how LGBTQ couples could form a meaningful relationship in a country often hostile to gay people, he responded without a sense of irony that "The bigotry question goes both ways. And there is a lot more anti-Christian...

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Religion's Connection to the End Times

(24) Comments | Posted July 14, 2014 | 11:57 AM

According to Pastor Mark Blitz and the surprisingly popular "Blood Moon prophecy," we've all got about a year left on the planet, but I, for one, am still making longer-term plans.

Armageddon. The End Times. The Rapture. Ragnarok. There are many different terms for the end of...

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The Faux Faith of Congress

(1) Comments | Posted June 27, 2014 | 6:25 PM

Members of Congress regularly boost their reelection prospects in positive ways like voting in line with the will of their district and participating in the passage of landmark legislation. But we know all too well that they also engage in negative campaigning, lambasting their political opponents and even scapegoating minorities...

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Twisting Religious Liberty Into Religious Discrimination

(12) Comments | Posted June 13, 2014 | 6:20 PM

Is a business owner's religious belief more important than an employee's right to health care? That's the question the Supreme Court is considering in the Hobby Lobby case, which serves as an example of how corporations are trying to use their owner's religious beliefs in order to discriminate...

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Atheism: The Last Major Political Taboo

(14) Comments | Posted May 22, 2014 | 2:17 PM

Traditional religions and their beliefs in gods are on the decline in America no matter how you measure it: one in five Americans have no religion according to the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, less people attend religious services than they publicly claim according...

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Upgrading From Prayer to Reason

(106) Comments | Posted May 1, 2014 | 9:25 AM

The first Thursday in May is a peculiar day for many Americans as it's a day set aside for government to intrude in their private religious practices. On May 1, the National Day of Prayer, government officials from city council to president ask citizens to join them in supplication. The...

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Religion Not Needed to Cope With Death

(11) Comments | Posted April 23, 2014 | 3:04 PM

In a life filled with unknowns, one of the few constants is the certainty of death. Some people believe that it's just the beginning of another life, whether in heaven, hell or reincarnated. But for humanists, atheists and others who reject claims of human existence persisting beyond the brain's functioning,...

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Pandora's Box of Vouchers

(1) Comments | Posted April 15, 2014 | 1:42 PM

Two voucher bills are currently making their way through Congress, the Scholarship for Kids Act and the CHOICE Act, and while these aren't the first attempts to legislate vouchers, the extreme nature of these bills is reinvigorating the debate surrounding government funding of private schools.

Besides the...

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Why Population Dynamics Matter

(1) Comments | Posted April 8, 2014 | 4:20 PM

Humanity truly benefited over the past century from technological innovations and societal changes that have allowed us to reduce infant mortality and live longer, healthier lives than ever before. But this is not without its consequences, as the planet and governments around the world struggle to...

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Behaving Badly? Stop Using Religion as an Excuse!

(4) Comments | Posted April 2, 2014 | 12:58 PM

While there is much joy in the world, it can also be a harsh and unforgiving place, full of disasters both natural and man-made. This is why it is so important that people try their best to follow the Golden Rule, modernly rephrased as treating others as they wish to...

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Religions Can Criticize Each Other, so Why Isn't It OK for Atheists to Criticize Religion?

(51) Comments | Posted March 17, 2014 | 3:53 PM

Nonbelief is on the rise in America and around the world, and with that rise we see more questioning of the core tenants of major religious traditions. But critical analysis of religious belief isn't something that people do only when leaving a faith. They also do it when...

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Secularizing Public Crosses With Two Cuts

(5) Comments | Posted March 4, 2014 | 6:15 PM

There's an uptick in legal cases challenging public displays of Christian crosses these days. It's because nontheist-rights groups and other civil liberties groups are finally getting the resources they need to challenge these longstanding affronts to the separation of church and state. Think of the AHA v. Lake...

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Disbelief Doesn't Cure Discrimination

(6) Comments | Posted February 25, 2014 | 3:47 PM

The nation's conversation about discrimination continued unabated since the Trayvon Martin tragedy, but he certainly wasn't the only victim of discrimination in recent times. If he was, Renisha McBride, Islan Nettles, and Dzuy Dhun Phan would still be alive today. As these stories make...

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Selling Prisoners to the Highest Bidder

(21) Comments | Posted February 14, 2014 | 11:19 AM

State officials in Idaho recently made major news when they announced that they would be taking control of a private prison which was built by the state in 1997 and run by a private corporation since that time. Under the deficient leadership of the Corrections Corporation of America...

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Atheist, Humanist, Secular: Why Fight Over Labels?

(52) Comments | Posted February 4, 2014 | 11:17 AM

No matter how you look at it, the nontheist movement in the U.S. is experiencing momentous growth. According to a Harris poll, those who profess no belief in a god is at the highest percentage ever recorded. Atheism as an identity is also becoming more mainstream and...

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On Darwin Day, We Honor Science and Scientists

(5) Comments | Posted January 29, 2014 | 12:06 PM

This February 12th is Darwin Day, a day in which we celebrate the anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth and the role of science and scientists in improving the quality of life for mankind. This year's celebration is especially meaningful given the numerous legislative threats that the scientific community...

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An End to Arrogant Atheism

(289) Comments | Posted January 15, 2014 | 12:55 PM

As an atheist who is also a humanist, I find that in our efforts to point out the dangers and failings inherent in religion, we sometimes fall into the language of arrogance. I read a recent quote from famed evolutionary biologist and past Humanist of the Year awardee,...

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Being Good for Goodness' Sake: Why Operation Christmas Child Is Wrong

(6) Comments | Posted November 26, 2013 | 4:01 PM

'Tis the season for giving, and according to the World Giving Index, America is the most charitable nation in the world, giving over 200 billion dollars annually. Unfortunately, some religious charitable organizations are staining American philanthropy's good name by giving gifts with strings attached. Rather than giving because...

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War Memorials Should Honor All That Serve

(3) Comments | Posted November 11, 2013 | 8:24 AM

As we reflect on Veterans Day, it's interesting to note how many veterans misperceive efforts to make war memorials more universal than the all-too-common cross variety that peppers our nation's public places. The most common complaint from those upset with efforts to remove religious war memorials from public spaces is...

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Is it Unethical to Hide Your Nonbelief?

(115) Comments | Posted October 15, 2013 | 4:50 PM

Nonbelievers in America, whether they identify themselves as atheists, agnostics, humanists, or just freethinkers, are people who live their lives without expecting gods to ever intervene in any way. It's obvious that their numbers are quickly growing. In fact, nonbelievers now make up nearly 20 percent of the...

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