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April Meeting - "Have We Turned a Corner?"

phil duranHave we turned a corner?
Progress on LGBT issues in Minnesota and beyond

The modern phase of the LGBT equality movement is generally about forty years old, but it seems as if in recent years, progress toward that goal has picked up steam. From advances regarding relationship recognition, to employment equality, the movement for LGBT rights has never been stronger. Our speaker, Phil Duran, will review and analyze recent developments, and offer thoughts about more to come.

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News and Notes

By George Kane

george head smallI have participated in two debates at the Argument of the Month Club. This is a Catholic men’s club that meets in the basement of St. Augustine Church in South St. Paul. Looking through their online recordings of their events I see that my first debate there was in January of 2009, and the second in April 2010.

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President's Column: Proclamation from the New President

By Eric Jayne

eric.aintAlthough I have been regularly contributing to the Minnesota Atheist newsletter, this is my very first “President’s Column” since being elected president of the Minnesota Atheists last month. In my upcoming columns, readers of this fine publication can expect to find exciting information about events, partnerships, and other efforts happening with the Minnesota Atheists. As with our previous president, I will also share my own goals and vision for our organization and our general secular cause. For this, my very first “President’s Column,” I am thrilled to make an announcement that is sure to dazzle your godless soul.

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MN Atheists Testitfies in Favor of Marriage Equality

House Civil Law Committee.augustBelow is the testimony by August Berkshire, representing Minnesota Atheists, at a Minnesota House Civil Law Committee hearing, in favor of the bill HF 1054, changing state law to allow for marriage equality. March 12, 2013, 6:00 p.m. The bill passed the committee on a 10-7 party line vote – Democrats for, Republicans against. The 9 p.m. “FOX at 9” local TV news on channel 9 reported that the bill’s “supporters ranged from Catholics to atheists.” Earlier that day a companion bill passed a Minnesota Senate committee. The bill now moves to the full legislature, which will vote on it after they have passed a budget.

Thank you, Mr. Chair; Committee Members. My name is August Berkshire and I represent Minnesota Atheists, our state’s oldest, largest, and most active atheist organization.

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Atheist Organizing and Activism in Small-Town Minnesota

KenOur guest speaker for March will be Ken Kressin. Ken organized the Cannon Falls Freethinkers group about three years ago – shortly after an episode at his daughter’s high school set him on an unexpected journey. Before that, Ken was an apathetic atheist and was unfamiliar with the basic tenets of skepticism, humanism, or atheism. Ken now considers himself an atheist acDvist and organizer in Cannon Falls. He has helped motivate dozens of residents to write over a hundred printed letters to the local newspaper on the subject of religion and non-­belief. Much of his summer and fall was spent protesting against the Minnesota marriage amendment--eventually becoming a conspicuous counter to the activities of the local Catholic Church.

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