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2013 Convention  
Madison, Wis.

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Raleigh Regional Convention

May 2 – 3

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October 9-10, 2014

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Appearances, Debates, Speeches and More

%291 %America/Chicago, %1980

Randy Newman

And the Lord said:

I burn down your cities — how blind you must be

I take from you your children and you say how blessed are we

You all must be crazy to put your faith in me

That's why I love mankind

You really need me

That's why I love mankind

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

Stephen Foster

Shameful rivalries of creed
Shall not make the martyr bleed,
In the good time coming.
Religion shall be shorn of pride,
And flourish all the stronger;
And Charity shall trim her lamp;
Wait a little longer.

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

Thelonious Monk

[“Do you believe in God?”] “I don’t know nothing. Do you?”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%291 %America/Chicago, %1980

Javed Akhtar

“I am an atheist, I have no religious beliefs. And obviously I don’t believe in spirituality of some kind.”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Frank Loesser

“What a blessing to know there’s a devil, and that I’m but a pawn in his game / that my impulse to sin doesn’t come from within, and so I’m not exactly to blame.” 

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

David Gilmour

“This earthly heaven is enough for me. . . ”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%291 %America/Chicago, %1980

Alex Day

“I look forward to receiving 20 emails saying, ‘Hey, I noticed you’re not religious. Look at your fingerprint. Doesn’t that prove that there is a creator, because your fingerprint is completely unique.’ Um, no. Doesn’t.”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Charlie McDonnell

Fan’s blog post (rating Charlie’s “hotness points”): Faith: Unknown but believed to be an atheist.
Charlie McDonnell: I am an atheist.
Fan’s Blog: Minus 50 [hotness] points
Charlie: Oh well, reason loses again.

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Sean Danielsen

“I’m definitely against all organized religion just because, when you really look at it, organized religion has caused most of the deaths in the history of this planet. Most of the wars were fought over organized religion.” 

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Dave Matthews

“We owe a faith to the world and to ourselves. We owe a grace and gratitude to things that have brought us here. But I think it’s very ignorant to say, ‘Well, for everything, God has a plan.’ That’s like an excuse. Maybe the real faithful act is to commit to something, to take action, as opposed to saying, ‘Well, everything is in the hand of God.’” 

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Ira Gershwin

“De t’ings dat yo’ li’ble
to read in de Bible
it ain’t necessarily so.”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

Mick Jagger

“I don’t have belief in the Holy Book. I don’t think many English people do.” 

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Tim Minchin

“And yes I have all of the usual objections
To the miseducation of children who, in tax-exempt institutions,
Are taught to externalize blame
And to feel ashamed and to judge things as plain right and wrong
But I quite like the songs . . . ”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Roger Waters

"I had some pretty dark and desperate moments all those years ago . . . . I didn't ever smash up a hotel room or throw a TV out a window. That was Led Zeppelin. Thank god. If there was a god, you know, which there isn't."

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

Sting

" . . . if ever I'm asked if I'm religious I always reply, 'Yes, I'm a devout musician.' Music puts me in touch with something beyond the intellect, something otherworldly, something sacred."

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Jay Gorney

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Kristin Lems

Days of the Theocracy

First they fight abortion,
Birth control is next,
Then comes sex if you're not married,
Finally, out goes sex.
Put the prayers back in the schools,
Install parochiaid,
Allow for corporal punishment,
And then you've got it made!

Chorus:
We're going back, back
To the good old days,
When men were really men
And women knew their place;
Back, back a couple of centuries,
And welcome back the days
Of the theocracy!

The family is so holy
There must be no divorce.
And if a wife is not content,
She must adjust, of course.
And if he's forced to beat her
It's all for her own good;
She must know what her limits are
As any woman should!

Chorus

The next to go is daycare,
It's all a commie plot!
What could be more fulfilling
Than a child, wanted or not?
The woman's work is housework--
God wanted it that way!
A salaried job degrades her, since
She never works for pay!

Chorus

They teach us woman's lot
Is love, honor and obey,
And while their crusty notions
Seem like jokes to us today.
They're sitting in the Capitol,
They're voting on our lives;
If we don't stop them soon
Our freedom will not long survive!

No going back, back
to the bad old days,
When men were really masters
And women were their slaves;
Let's go ahead, ahead
For future centuries
And build a world that's based
On true democracy.
And build a world that's based on true equality.
(A-person)

Published in Freethought of the Day
%291 %America/Chicago, %1980

Bjork

“I've got my own religion. Iceland sets a world-record. The United Nations asked people from all over the world a series of questions. Iceland stuck out on one thing. When we were asked what do we believe, 90% said, 'ourselves.' I think I'm in that group. If I get into trouble, there's no God or Allah to sort me out. I have to do it myself.”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

P.G. Wodehouse

“'It is a strange religion,' he murmured. 'A strange religion, indeed.'”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

John Lennon

Imagine

Imagine there's no heaven,
It's easy if you try,
No hell below us,
Above us only sky.
Imagine all the people
Living for today.

Imagine there's no country,
It isn't hard to do.
Nothing to kill or die for,
And no religion, too.
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace--

You may say I'm a dreamer.
But I'm not the only one.
I hope someday you'll join us,
And the world will be as one.

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

Joe Hill

The Preacher And The Slave

Long-haired preachers come out every night
Try to tell you what's wrong and what's right;
But when asked about something to eat,
They will answer in voices so sweet:

You will eat, by and by,
In that glorious land in the sky.
Work and pray; live on hay.
You'll get pie in the sky when you die. (That's a lie!)

Oh, the Starvation Army they play
And they sing and they clap and they pray
Till they get all your coin on the drum,
Then they'll tell you when you're on the bum.

If you fight hard for children and wife,
Try to get something good in this life,
You're a sinner and bad man, they tell;
When you die you will sure go to Hell.

Holy Rollers and Jumpers come out,
And they holler, they jump, and they shout.
"Give your money to Jesus," they say,
"He will cure all diseases today."

Working folk of all countries, unite!
Side by side we for freedom will fight.
Then the world and its wealth we have gained,
To the grafters we'll sing this refrain:

You will eat, by and by,
When you've learned how to cook and to fry.
Chop some wood--'twill do you good.
And you'll eat in the sweet by and by. (That's no lie!)

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

George Gershwin

It Ain't Necessarily So

It ain't necessarily so, (repeat)
De t'ings dat yo' li'ble
To read in de Bible,
It ain't necessarily so.

Li'l David was small, but oh my! (rpt)
He fought big Goliath
Who lay down an' dieth!
Li'l David was small, but oh my!

Oh, Jonah, he lived in de whale, (rpt)
Fo' he made his home in
Dat fish's abdomen.
Oh, Jonah, he lived in de whale.

Li'l Moses was found in a stream, (rpt)
He floated on water
Till Ole Pharaoh's daughter
She fished him, she says, from that stream.

It ain't necessarily so, (rpt)
Dey tell all you chillun
De debble's a villun,
But 'tain't necessarily so.

To get into Hebben don' snap for a sebben!
Live clean! Don' have no fault.
Oh, I takes dat gospel
Whenever it's poss'ble,
But wid a grain of salt.

Methus'lah lived nine hundred years,
But who calls dat livin'
When no gal'll give in
To no man what's nine hundred years?

I'm preachin' dis sermon to show,
It ain't nessa, ain't nessa,
ain't nessa, ain't nessa,
Ain't necessarily so.

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

Ani DiFranco

“I'm an atheist. . . . how unfortunate it is to assign responsibility to the higher up for justice amongst people.”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

Pierre Jean de Beranger

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Richard Rodgers

On “inspiration”:

“That's a bad word for what happens to me when I write. What I do is not as fancy as some people may think. . . This isn't a question of sitting on the top of a hill and waiting for inspiration to strike. It's work. People have said ‘You're a genius.’ I say, ‘No, it's my job.’ ”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Dan Barker

“I threw out the bath water, and there was no baby there.”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

Cole Porter

"Live and let live, be and let be,
Hear and let hear, see and let see,
Sing and let sing, dance and let dance.
.  .  . 
Live and let live and remember this line:
'Your bus'ness is your bus'ness and my bus'ness is mine.'"

Published in Freethought of the Day
%291 %America/Chicago, %1980

Stephen Sondheim

Nothing with gods, nothing with fate;
Weighty affairs will just have to wait!
Nothing that's formal,
Nothing that's normal,
No recitations to recite;
Open up the curtain:
Comedy Tonight!

Published in Freethought of the Day
%250 %America/Chicago, %1980

Irving Berlin

"Paradise doesn't compare.
All the nice people are there. [hell]
They come there from everywhere
Just to revel with Mister Devil."

Published in Freethought of the Day
%291 %America/Chicago, %1980

Tom Lehrer

“First you get down on your knees,
Fiddle with your rosaries,
Bow your head with great respect,
And genuflect, genuflect, genuflect!

Do whatever steps you want, if
You have cleared them with the Pontiff.
Everybody say his own
Kyrie eleison,
Doin' the Vatican Rag.

Get in line in that processional,
Step into that small confessional,
There, the guy who's got religion'll
Tell you if your sin's original.
If it is, try playin' it safer,
Drink the wine and chew the wafer,
Two, four, six, eight,
Time to transubstantiate!

So get down upon your knees,
Fiddle with your rosaries,
Bow your head with great respect,
And genuflect, genuflect, genuflect!

Make a cross on your abdomen,
When in Rome do like a Roman,
Ave Maria,
Gee it's good to see ya,
Gettin' ecstatic an'
Sorta dramatic an'
Doin' the Vatican Rag!”

Published in Freethought of the Day
%291 %America/Chicago, %1980

E.Y. (Yip) Harburg

Do Unto Others?

'Love thy neighbor as thyself?'
Hide that motto on the shelf!
Let it lie there, keep it idle
Especially if you're suicidal.

Realist

'For what we are about to receive,
Oh Lord, 'tis Thee we thank,'
Said the Cannibal as he cut a slice
Of the missionary's shank.

Published in Spotlight
%041 %America/Chicago, %1980

Jerome Kern

“Life is to be enjoyed.”

Published in Spotlight

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