The Humanist

The Humanist is a magazine focusing on critical inquiry and social concern from a humanist perspective. Published by the American Humanist Association, The Humanist covers everything from science and religion to politics and popular culture.

Articles from Vol. 63, No. 3, May-June

A Matter of Integrity. (Living Humanism)
The golf club in Amherst, Massachusetts, has a picturesque New England quality to it with views stretching to the Holyoke range three miles away, but my son Mark couldn't appreciate its charms that day in July. He had entered the annual tournament...
A Reckless Administration May Reap Disastrous Consequences
Spoken from the floor of the U.S. Senate on February 12, 2003 To contemplate war is to think about the most horrible of human experiences. On this day, as this nation stands at the brink of battle, every American on some level must be contemplating...
Atheists in Foxholes, Christian in Uniform
In a speech after the September 11, 2001, attacks, speaking of a war on terrorism, U.S. President George W. Bush said, "We cannot know every turn this battle will take, yet we know our cause is just...." In his 2003 State of the Union message, referring...
Gathering Storms. (Church and State)
Writing a column in a bimonthly magazine means that old news is often discussed, but even this needs to be put into perspective. In February 2003 there were three major court rulings on church-state and religious liberty issues. In the first, almost...
Globalization and Its Malcontents. (Media Beat)
One of the big media buzzwords to emerge in recent years is globalization. By now, we are likely to know what it means. That's unfortunate--because at this point the word is so ambiguous that it doesn't really mean much of anything. News outlets...
Humanism and Its Aspirations
Humanist Manifsto III, a successor to the Humanist Manifesto of 1933 * Humanism is a progressive philosophy of life that, without supernaturalism, affirms our ability and responsibility to lead ethical lives of personal fulfillment that aspire to...
Humanist Profile
"Let me explain to you, and myself also, what interests of mine might be reckoned as humanist. I'm a composer of music, a poet, and--to a lesser degree--a painter and a designer of type forms. In short, I'm a craftman.... The world of music is a globe...
Just War Theory
Does the Bush administration have the right under international law to attack and invade a sovereign nation in order to change its government? On March 20, 2003, a U.S.-led war against Iraq began when cruise missiles and laser-guided bombs were fired...
Lessons from the Texas Faith-Based Initiative
The situation in Texas, as it has developed for more than six years, provides a glaringly negative case study of what George W. Bush's faith-based initiative will look like if fully implemented nationally. This is because, while Bush was governor of...
Lessons Learned from Israel's Peace Village. (Alternative Voices)
Headlines over the past two years have detailed a cycle of violence and retribution in Israel during the intifada: suicide bombings followed by retaliatory, armed incursions and deadly explosions met by rocket revenge. Amid these accounts of dysfunctional...
Pioneers in Space, Pioneers of Peace? (Up Front: News and Opinion from Independent Minds)
President Bush has ignored the largest peace movement in world history, consisting of individuals who still believe that the United Nations' inspectors should have been given more time to disarm Iraq or, in the case of continued noncompliance, allowed...
Powell, Plagiarism, Taxes, and War. (Watch on the Right)
The media spin after U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell's UN speech on February 5, 2003, was about as dynamic as a Fox News debate. Cheerleading talking heads immediately took to the airwaves to discern whether or not Powell succeeded in building...
Public Prayer Fanatics Borrow Page from Enemy's Script. (Up Front: News and Opinion from Independent Minds)
The Bush administration has been dealt a setback in its campaign to allow prayer in our public schools. The full 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals has voted 15-9 to back the 2-1 vote by its earlier panel finding the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional...
Signatories
We who sign Humanism and Its Aspirations declare ourselves in general agreement with its substance and, while not necessarily endorsing all of its specifics, unreservedly offer it to a candid public. Philip W. Anderson Nobel laureate in physics, 1977 Philip...
The Archaeology of Compassion
Seventeenth-century philosopher Thomas Hobbes described the human existence as one of "continual fear and danger of violent death," and human life as "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short." He laid the groundwork for today's popular, almost cartoonlike,...
The Issue at Hand
On this seventieth anniversary of A Humanist Manifesto, we publish Humanism and Its Aspirations. This new document sums up the central principles that underlie the Humanist philosophy and approach to life, and expresses the Humanist commitment to a...
The Pharmaceutical Drive to Drug. (Technology & Society)
In a manner of speaking, the twenty-first century equivalent to the traveling huckster who preyed on ignorance and insecurity to sell patent medicines and other concoctions of dubious efficacy may be the multinational pharmaceutical industry. There...
The Unfolding of Humanist Manifesto III. (Cover Story)
Seventy years after the first Humanist Manifesto * and thirty years after the second, we find ourselves living in a world where many Humanist values and ideals have never been more widely accepted while others have never been more urgently needed....
Through the Legal Looking Glass. (Up Front: News and Opinion from Independent Minds)
The appellate court dialogue reads like the Red Queen's demand, "Sentence first, verdict afterward." Hearing a death row. inmate's appeal, Justice Laura Stith of the Missouri Supreme Court displayed exasperated incredulity when questioning Assistant...
U.S. Government Detention of Suspects
The Bush administration's program to require Middle Eastern males to submit to special registration comes on the heels of a similar crackdown the U. S. Justice Department pursued in the wake of the September 11, 2001, attacks. Once again, human rights...