Separation of State and Church

SkepSun #166 (11_29_2015)

On Freethought Radio, Annie Laurie Gaylor and Dan Barker talk with sociologist and author Ryan T. Cragun explains his new book: How To Defeat Religion in 10 Easy Steps.

Gordon Bonnet of the Skeptophilia blog asks if we can distinguish among quotations made in reference to the Irish during the Potato Famine, the Jews prior to World War II, or the Syrian refugees now.

Hemant Mehta of the Friendly Atheist blog fills us in on some things you should know about Catholic hospitals before you go to one…particularly if you’re a woman seeking reproductive care.

And the Skeptic Rogues from the Skeptics Guide to the Universe podcast discuss how the U.S. Dept. of Justice is finally starting to crack down on the unscrupulous and sometimes downright unethical practices of nutritional supplement manufacturers.

Finally, it might surprise you that one of this country’s most prominent and respected advocates for secularism is a reverend, unless of course you already know of the Reverend Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. Lynn has spent a career making the case that freedom of religion requires freedom from government-sponsored religion. On a Point of Inquiry podcast,he and host Lindsay Beyerstein discuss the numerous ways the mixing of church and state have resulted in corruption and injustices with examples taken from his new book God and Government: Twenty-Five Years of Fighting for Equality, Secularism, and Freedom Of Conscience.


Rev. Barry Lynn of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State

SkepSun #163 (11_08_2015)

This week is the first of two WRFI Fall Fundraiser Skeptical Sundays, recorded live in the WRFI studio in Ithaca’s historic Clinton House. If you listen to the show via this webpage or the podcast instead of over the airwaves, please give to WRFI this week. This show will only continue to exist if the people for whom it’s important pledge their support to WRFI. Call the station during the day at 607.319.5445 and give what you can.  Consider a monthly recurring donation to spread your gift out over a year. Give $120 or more and you can have your choice of t-shirt or tote-bag. You can make your pledge online here.  But if you do so, please call the station so that you are in the running for one of the great daily prizes we’re offering during the marathon.  When you call the station be sure to say that Skeptical Sunday is one of your favorite shows!  Thank you so much to everyone who called in during the Nov. 8 show. Radio listeners will get another chance to give next week when Gordon Bonnet of the renowned Skeptophilia blog will join me live in the studio.

On this show we get started with Freethought Radio on which Annie Laurie Gaylor and Dan Barker announce Brooke Mulder as the winner of FFRF’s “Nothing Fails Like Prayer” contest for her secular invocation before the Glendale, Arizona, city council. Then we hear veteran Steven Hewett talk about his successful lawsuit to remove a Christian War Memorial from the city of King, North Carolina.

In hour two, we celebrate Carl Sagan birthday which is tomorrow, November 9. We’ll hear a wonderful 2007 interview of author and producer Ann Druyan, Carl’s widow, on the release of “The Varieties of Scientific Experience: A Personal View of the Search for God” an collection of Carl Sagan’s 1985 Gifford Lectures at the University of Glasgow that she edited.

Become a supporter of independent, non-commercial, volunteer-powered community radio in Tompkins and Schuyler Counties. Please give what you can this week. Thanks again to everyone who has already given!  607.319.5445 or give at

Carl Sagan, November 9, 1934 – December 20, 1996

Carl Sagan, November 9, 1934 – December 20, 1996