President's Column: Know your Local Nonprophet Nonprofits

eric jayne glove aintsBy Eric Jayne

Our recent, first-ever, “Dinner with the Board” event was delightfully fun. The board members had a chance to talk with several supporters while enjoying delicious drinks and food. A couple of the guests I spoke with wanted to learn more about the philanthropic endeavors of Minnesota Atheists. We talked about our ongoing work with the Family Place shelter, Emergency Foodshelf Network, and Children’s Hospital of Minnesota. We also talked about other local, secular nonprofits that provide helpful services to the community without the proselytizing that often comes with faith-based agencies. We concluded that it might be helpful to have a list of some of these secular nonprofits to refer to when considering places to volunteer and donate money - after, of course, you've made your donation to Minnesota Atheists.

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Sexual Harassment Policies Should be Gender Neutral

man womanBy Bernadette Chlebeck and Phil Cunliffe

When you hear the words “Sexual Harassment Policy,” what image comes to your mind? Most likely you envision a female victim and a male perpetrator. If you do, you are not alone. Statistics from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission show that 82.2% of reported sexual harassment charges were filed by females. The atheist community has had its share of sexual harassment violations, and sexual harassment policies are now being created to help protect women.

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MN Atheists Seeks to Change Law to Allow Atheists to Perform Marriages

By August Berkshire

august headMinnesota Atheists has restarted our process to change Minnesota state law to allow atheist leaders to conduct civil marriages. We began this project a few years ago but then the marriage amendment and the marriage equality legislation intervened. We knew that the Minnesota state legislature was not going to tackle both gay and atheist marriage issues in the same year.

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Board Report - October 2013

By Jill Carlson

jill carlsonAt the September board meeting, the Board voted to sign a lease on rental space at the Wesley Center in Downtown Minneapolis for $200 per month for one year. This arrangement failed when it was later determined that the space was already rented by another tenant. The Board agreed to continue to search for affordable spaces to display our extensive collection of atheist books that is currently in storage.

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Commentary - Action, Not Semantics, Defines Atheism

By Steve Petersen

steve in actionAt the September Minnesota Atheists meeting with PZ Myers, a classic issue came up in the question-and-answer session: Atheism only defines what we do not believe rather that what we do believe.  I argued that many people are proud to be independent, not dependent, even though this also defines only what they are not. Similarly, the Declaration of Independence is primarily a negation of dependence on Britain, but it is not viewed as a pejorative document, at least not because of its title.

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