Published by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc. FFRF.org

‘Freethought Radio’ listeners chime in

Vol. 36 No. 02 March 2019

Freethought Radio listeners were offered the opportunity to enter a random drawing for a free copy of co-host Dan Barker’s latest book, Mere Morality (a rejoinder to C.S. Lewis’ Mere Christianity).   

Here are some of the messages received in January by listeners of FFRF’s radio show/podcast, which has been on the air since the spring of 2006, currently broadcasts in six cities and drawing some 10,000 weekly podcast listeners. Freethought Radio features irreverent views, news music and interviews, and reports every week on FFRF’s most timely actions. To listen, visit ffrf.org/radio.

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I’ve been listening to Freethought Radio through the Overcast podcast app since shortly after I met Dan Barker at the Tucson Festival of Books a few years ago, and I’ve been an FFRF member since the day after the general election in 2016. Thanks for the work you’re doing at FFRF!

Rich Miller
Arizona

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I listen to the podcast every week.

I am agnostic, after identifying as a Christian most of my life. Like many people, it wasn’t something that sprang into existence from nowhere, it evolved over time. I remember telling my mom when I was not quite a teen that I believed in an absent god, that set the world spinning and then walked away for us to manage on our own. (I’m pretty sure that wasn’t the exact quote, but that was the idea.)

As an adult, I spent much of my career working as the news director for a Christian radio group. I was considered the token liberal because, among other things, I believed in First Amendment equality for all faiths, not just Christianity, even as I expressed a specifically Christian worldview on the air, which I did firmly believe at the time.

While serving as a Sunday school teacher and youth group leader, I regularly told my students to “study to show thyself approved,” as the bible says, and not take my word for it. Interestingly, many of those same students now are themselves unchurched, atheist, agnostic, or lean toward what is now considered liberal Christianity.

As the years pass, I took the advice I gave my own students. After much thought and study, I realized that the road didn’t lead to Calvary, but to a wider road with a greater sense of the awe, mystery and majesty of the universe, unfettered by the cloistered walls of Christianity. 

Even though I’ve been agnostic for several years, it’s not something I discuss often, telling only a few people and only when pressed on a specific religious issue. 

Robert Parson
Arkansas

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I listen to your program in my car on my way to home after work in College Station, Texas. I am Mexican of a privileged upbringing and fortunately I have never faced the hardships my unprivileged peers face every day. However, I do feel disconnected from my community due to my nonbelief. I feel as if I can’t say out loud what I really think because people are going to reject me. That’s why I feel so refreshed when I listen to your program. It’s very comforting to know there is a big community of people who will not judge you for what you (don’t) believe.

Ricardo Simental Magaña
Texas

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I first started listening to the podcast of Freethought Radio when I was watching atheist-themed videos on YouTube, and a recommendation popped up. It was the video of Dan and Annie Laurie on the “Oprah Winfrey Show.” That led to watching more videos and to the FFRF website, where I learned about the radio show. I eagerly await each episode. I’ve read all of Dan’s books. Keep up the good work.

David O’Reilly
Ireland

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I am so glad I accidentally heard about you on the “Devil’s Advocate” radio show, which is carried on one of our local talk show radio stations. This was a year or more ago, and I think the interview was about the Johnson Amendment.

Anyway, I’ve gone on to become a member, and enjoy FFRF’s videos on YouTube, your newspaper, the “Freethought Matters” TV show, and anything else I can find that you’re doing. It is so good to know your organization is working to keep religion out of the public arena. I’ll be really happy if/when you get rid of chaplains in the Unied States legislature. Thank you for everything you do.

Gladys Burritt
California

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I follow your show in podcast from @PodcastAddict. Thank you for defending the “the wall,” fence, whatever they’d like to call it. I’ll call it whatever they want. But it’s all the same thing “between church and state”!

Dean Davis
Ohio

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I’ve been a listener of your broadcast for quite a few years and just became a new member of FFRF in December. I’m glad my yearly donation is going toward such an important cause.

I listened to the show on my laptop from your website until I started using the Castbox app last year for all my podcasts. Now I have you everywhere I go with my smartphone.

Thanks for all the great work you do!

Carl Davidson
Illinois

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I’ve listened to Freethought Radio since I found out about the existence of podcasts. I really appreciate you making the frank and simple point that Christianity is not the default human condition and should not be part of the government. I’m interested in Dan’s book, Mere Morality, because of the false argument that a bronze-age and dark-age religion teaches humans morality.

LK Lowe
Oregon

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I listen to Freethought Radio via podcast every week. I am an FFRF member from Kentucky and it’s a great way to keep up-to-date on all the great work you do on our behalf. Living in Kentucky as an atheist is a challenge, especially with people like our governor always chipping away at the wall of separation between church and state. It’s great to have an organization that keeps the government in check and makes sure the wall stays in place to protect us all.

Manolo Matos
Kentucky

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Happy New Year from my flight to Bangkok! I usually listen on my monthly commute to Thailand. Month on, month off. Semi-retired for years and looking forward to full early retirement in Thailand next year.

Thanks for being the voice of reason and sanity in the crazy USA and for everything FFRF does.

Kevin Danchisen
Michigan

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I was born in a Christian home and my father is pastor in Mexico City. I preached and led worship, playing the guitar at church. I can identify with your story, Mr. Barker. Reading science with an open mind and all the questions that Christianity could not answer, and reading Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion, amounted to my realization this past November that God doesn’t exist.

I’ve read a couple of your books and I just started on losing faith in faith. I’m 43 now and married to a surprisingly supporting wife. I’m going through a scary/exiting time and your books and now your podcast are helping me through it.

Genaro Vega

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These were the messages received by the ultimate lucky winners of the free book drawing:

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We listen to the program via podcast on iTunes and very much look forward to every new episode each week.

As parents raising godless (and moral) young children in small-town Ohio, we appreciate the dose of sanity and rationalism in what can seem at times an increasing oppressive religious environment.

Please keep up the fantastic work.

Andy Ahern
Ohio

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I listen to Freethought Radio as a podcast through the app PocketCast. I listen to Freethought Radio and a slew of other atheist podcasts. For me, it’s a breath of fresh air to listen to others who share my views.

I moved to the rural southwest Wisconsin area a couple of years ago. I felt alone, and even the podcasts couldn’t quench my thirst for social interaction with freethinkers. So, I started The Driftless Atheists Meetup group.

I don’t think I would have had the courage to start such a group without the encouragement and support of people like you.

Joshua Masterson
Wisconsin

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I listen to the radio show on podcast because I am an atheist, because I want to be exposed to other folks of like mind.

William McCallister
Maryland

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I listen to Freethought Radio podcasts because I’m not always available at the time of the broadcast. I’ve been a member for many years and really enjoy every radio show. I have read several of the books mentioned on various shows and have others on my long list of “to read” books.Thanks for all you do for freethought.

Bob Stewart
Colorado