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Meetings

Location
Buckman Bridge Unitarian Universalist Church
8447 Manresa Ave., Jacksonville, FL 32244

From the I-295 Roosevelt exit, go north to the first traffic light, Collins Rd.  Turn right on Collins.  Go 400 ft.  The church driveway will be on your right.

Schedule
Third Monday of each month EXCEPT December
6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
(Doors open at 6:00 p.m.)

Aug. 21, 2017 "Storms of My Grandchildren" Gary A. Stilwell, Ph.D., from Tallahassee, Florida

Dr. Stilwell will review James Hansen's "Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth About the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity" and then lead the discussion.

July 17, 2017 "How to Defeat Religion in 10 Easy Steps" Ryan T. Cragun, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Sociology and Director, Honors Program, The University of Tampa

 Drawing on the latest social-scientific research on religion, "How to Defeat Religion in 10 Easy Steps" illustrates specific, actionable steps that interested nonbelievers and progressive believers can take to facilitate fundamentalist religion’s decline.

June 19, 2017 "Spinoza: Religion without Theism" Scott Kimbrough, Professor of Philosophy and Chair, Division of Humanities, Jacksonville University

When asked whether he believed in God, Albert Einstein answered, “I believe in Spinoza’s God who reveals Himself in the orderly harmony of what exists, not in a God who...  Come to learn more!

May 15, 2017 "The Crisis of the American Dream" David R. Simon, Ph.D., Sociology Professor (Ret.)

 The American Dream is a vague, commonly used phrase which is both overly used and highly questionable.  It is not that a majority of Americans are no longer middle class.  It is more that the American Dream has always been based on mythical notions

April 17, 2017 "What Has the AHA Done for Me, Lately?" Jenny Kalmanson, Vice President, American Humanist Association and President, Institute for Humanist Studies

 Learn more a about humanism and about the American Humanist Association, especially pertinent in that the FCFS has just become a chapter of the AHA and espouses its principles.  (See

March 20, 2017 "To Be an American" Ken Hurley's documentary film, "To Be an American" will be shown in its entirety at our March monthly meeting, at no charge.

This award-winning film by Ken Hurley, edited by Bridget Green, as told by Americans, captures what ot MEANS to be an American in the opinions of hundreds of people from all 50 states.

Feb. 20, 2017 “The 2016 Election—Why Hillary Clinton Lost in Florida:  A Field Perspective” Tony Penna, Regional Organizer for the Hillary Clinton Campaign, Duval County; former North Florida Regional Director, Enroll America

The presenter will contrast perceptions of the candidates in 2012 and 2016 and will assess the 2016 Florida Clinton campaign Field Operations effort.

Jan. 16, 2017 "The Role of Empathy in End-of-Life Decision Making" Adrianne L. McEvoy, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Philosophy; Director, Great Conversations Honors Program, Mansfield University of Pennsylvania

 This talk will examine the nature of empathy and the vital role it plays, for providers as well as patients' loved-ones,  in making end-of-life medical decisions.

Dec. 19, 2016 "Thirteenth Annual Human Light Celebration: No lecture tonight.  We celebrate the season, install 2014 officers, recognize past accomplishments, envision future direction.

 Gather at 6:30 p.m. at a local Jacksonville restaurant.  Dine at 7:00.  Ceremonies to follow.  RSVP to Carrie by Friday, December 16, for location and directions, if you plan to attend.

Nov. 21, 2016 “American Public Education: The Sinister Linkage - ACE Events, the GINI Score, and a Rapidly Deepening Spiral” Joque H. Soskis, retired UNF faculty member, retired Florida Bar member, author, freethinker

That the U.S. educational system is in serious crisis is widely recognized.  We shall delve into why this is so.

Oct. 17, 2016 “How to Talk to a Person of Faith About Church-State Separation, if You Have To…” Bill Mefford, Faith Organizer, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, Washington DC

 Can people of faith and people who embrace a nonreligious worldview work together to ensure freedom of religion for all people? How? Let's find out together.

Sept. 19, 2016 "Beyond My Plate: Nutritional Advice for a Long and Healthy Life" Frances V. Siver, MS, RDN, LDN; Coordinator, ISPP Program, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Brooks College of Health, University of North Florida

Learn about practical, science-based dietary changes that you can make to decrease your risk of chronic disease while at the same time, potentially increasing your years of quality life. 

Aug. 15, 2016 "The Physiology of Gender" Elaine M. Hull, PhD, Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience, Florida State University

Genes and hormones are the major factors that produce sex differentiation, but stress and social factors can tweak the process, sometimes leading to gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people.

July 18, 2016 "Why Interfaith Must Include the Nonreligious" Tarah Trueblood, J.D., M.Div., M.A., Director, Interfaith Center, University of North Florida

America is currently the most religiously diverse country in the world. To heal our divided America, communities across the country must engage in meaningful interfaith dialogue and cooperation; and interfaith must include the religious, nonreligious, and spiritual but not religious.

June 20, 2016 “Can Moral Reasoning Rise above Emotion: Moral Psychology and the Role of Emotion in Reasoning” Scott Kimbrough, Ph.D.,  Professor of Philosophy and Chair, Division of Humanities, Jacksonville University

People do not typically reason to their moral convictions, but emotionally affiliate with “moral tribes.” Can reason rise above emotion-based tribalism?

May 16, 2016 “The Rise of the Authoritarians” David R. Simon, Ph.D., Sociology Professor (Ret.), Postdoctoral Fellow

Social critic David Simon will explore the rise of authoritarian voters in the 2016 political campaign. He will explain the classical sociological theory of authoritarians and touch upon the potential dangers of authoritarian candidates being elected.

April 18, 2016 “Playing on a Broken Chessboard: Policies and Realities in the Middle East” David Schwam-Baird, PhD, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, UNF

America's Middle East policy is in tatters, mainly because the Middle East is in tatters. Given the current disarray, is it even possible for America to craft a coherent and realistic policy for the Middle East, today?

March 21, 2016 "The American Healthcare System from A-Z, in 30 Minutes or Less" Tony Penna, North Florida Regional Director, Enroll America (a nonprofit whose mission is to spread health insurance coverage)

 Tony will compare healthcare models in America and in other countries and discuss the impact of the Affordable Care Act on our healthcare system.

Feb. 15, 2016 "The Religious Freedon Restoration Act and its Dangers to Secular Society and Government" Toni Van Pelt, President, Institute for Science and Humane Values 

Increasingly, we are seeing businesses refusing services to indivisuals based on religious objections. Imposing beliefs on others who do not share them goes against the very fiber and core of not just secular humanist values and principles, but American family values, as well.

Jan. 18, 2016 "The Role of Empathy in Medical Decision Making" Adrianne Leigh McEvoy, PhD, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Mansfield University of Pennsylvania What exactly is the role of empathy in medical decision making? More than most patients and providers realize.
Dec. 21, 2015 “Twelfth Annual Human Light Celebration” No lecture tonight.  We celebrate the season, install 2014 officers, recognize past accomplishments, envision future direction. Gather at 6:30 p.m. at a local Jacksonville restaurant.  Dine at 7:00.  Ceremonies to follow.  RSVP to Carrie.  RSVP to Carrie by December 18 for location and directions, if you plan to attend.
Nov. 16, 2015  "When the Government Should Shut Up: Religion, Abortion, and Confederate Flags" Christopher J. Roederer, Professor of Law and Director, International Programs, Florida Coastal School of Law  Roederer says of his talk, I plan to tie in cases that range from Town of Greece (establishment clause) through Casey and Rust v. Sullivan (abortion “counseling”) to Texas v. Walker (the recent case in Texas regarding the confederate flag on license plates).
Oct. 19, 2015 “Policing in America: It's Worse Than You Think. (FAR worse!)” Joque H. Soskis, former police officer and police administrator, retired UNF criminal justice professor, and retired attorney The present failures, misfeasance, and malfeasance of the American police have multiple interlocking and intractable sources, many of which are not directly related to the police, themselves.
Sept. 21, 2015 “Building God’s Kingdom: Inside the World of Christian Reconstruction” Julie Ingersoll, PhD, Associate Professor of Religious Studies, and Religious Studies Program Coordinator, University of North Florida Dr. Julie Ingersoll will be discussing her brand new book, Building God’s Kingdom: Inside the World of Christian Reconstruction (Oxford University Press 2015)
Aug. 17, 2015 “Colonization of the Inner Solar System” Jay S. Huebner, PhD, Professor Emeritus of Physics, University of North Florida How can we build manufactured habitats for better lives in space?
July 20, 2015 “The Politics of Neoliberalism” David Jaffee, PhD, Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work, University of North Florida Neoliberalism has been the dominant political economic paradigm in the United States since the 1980s. We shall consider how neoliberalism has shaped electoral politics, the two party system, and the prospects for democracy. 
June 15, 2015 “The Theocracy War: Dispatches from the Front” Rabbi Merrill Shapiro, President, National Board of Trustees, Americans United for Separation of Church and State There is a movement in our midst that rejects the values of inclusivity and diversity, a movement that seeks to undermine the foundations of our modern secular Democracy!  Patriots of every stripe are rising to wage war on Theocracy.
May 18, 2015 “A Road No Longer Winding” Douglas R. Doan, past Methodist minister, now freethinker Join us for another remarkable tale of de-conversion!
April 20, 2015 “ISIS Under Your Bed!  What Are the Threats of the Current Mid-East Mess?” David Schwam-Baird, PhD, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, University of North Florida Come and learn more about the latest terrorist phenomenon from a respected expert on Middle-East politics.
April 14, 2015

"FREEDOM OF SPEECH:  Linchpin of a Free Society"

SPECIAL EVENT - a panel discussion on Freedom of Speech co-sponsored by the FCFS, the UNF Department of Political Science and Public Administration, the UNF Pre-Law Program, and FOLIO Weekly.

Panelists: Parvez Ahmed, PhD, Associate Professor of Finance, UNF; Susan Cooper Eastman, Writer-at-Large, Folio Weekly: Frank Denton, PhD, Editor, Florida Times-Union: François Kloc, Honorary French Consul, Jacksonville; Christopher J. Roederer, Law Professor, Florida Coastal School of Law; Brian Thornton, PhD, Professor of Communications, UNF.  Moderator: Staci Spanos, WJXT-TV Channel 4

Join us on TUESDAY, April 14, at the UNF University Center, 12000 Alumni Drive, for this panel discussion on Freedom of Speech by two UNF professors, two outstanding journalists, and the French consul.  This panel discussion was inspired by the world-wide mixed reaction to the recent Charlie Hebdo terrorist attacks.  The panelists will address this and much more.  For tetails, visit: Link to Flyer.
March 16, 2015 "The United States of Insanity" David R. Simon, PhD, Sociologist, Research Fellow, Institute of Public and International Policy, University of North Florida (Ret.) e last few years, several respected authors have claimed that the United States has become a dysfunctional society.  Has it?  And how would one empirically prove this statement, anyway?
Feb. 16, 2015 “Dinosaurs, Locomotion, and Dinosaur-to-Avian Evolution” Jeremy Stalker, Ph.D., Marine Biologist, Jacksonville University Celebrate Darwin's birth month with us as we take a trip through time, which will include some dinosaur evolution and locomotion, geology, and dinosaur-to-avian evolution.
Jan. 19, 2015 “Common Core and Education Reform:  The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly” Scott Shine, Duval County School Board Member Scott Shine will take an objective look at Common Core and High Stakes Testing in a public education environment undergoing unprecedented reform.
Dec. 15, 2014 “Eleventh Annual Human Light Celebration” Celebrate the season, Install 2015 officers, recognize 2014 accomplishments, envision future direction. (No lecture.) Gather at 6:30 p.m. at the BELLA VITA Italian Restaurant, 3825 Baymeadows Rd., Jax,  32217.  Dine at 7:00 (order from the menu).  Ceremonies to follow.  RSVP to Carrie.
Nov. 17, 2014 "Waiting for a Donut" - a one-act play by Earl Coggins Cast in order of appearance:  Newt (Earl Coggins) and Zorba (David Schwam-Baird), "Waiting for a Donut" is a witty, introspective journey into the complexity of a simple life.
Oct. 20, 2014 "Rethinking the Search for Truth" Matthew Groe, PhD, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Jacksonville University Dr. Groe will throw suspicion on the idea that we could ever reach the absolute truth about how reality really is.
Sept. 15, 2014 "Dredging for Commerce: A Critical Perspective on the St. Johns River Deepening Project" David Jaffee, PhD, Sociology Professor, Dept. of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work, UNF Dr. Jaffee will critically analyze the pros and cons of the impending St. Johns River Deepening Project.
Aug. 18, 2014 "Huntington's Disease: Medical and Moral Dimensions" Richard T. Hull, PhD, Bioethicist; Professor Emeritus, Department of Philosophy, SUNY Buffalo; Author; Editor; Humanist Dr. Hull will discuss the horror and the facts of this dsease.  He will review current research and its promise for eventually conquering Huntington's, long misidentified as a divine retribution for the sins of past relatives.
July 21, 2014 "How Do We Know?" or “Why science and conservative theology can’t agree on anything of substance except that the other side is wrong.” David Campbell, award-winning high school science teacher This talk will be an exploration of different ways of learning and knowing in the domains of science and religion.  David will examine how both science and religion ask and answer questions, the types of questions they ask, and how they arrive at their conclusions.
June 16, 2014 "Operation Inclusion:  There's a Role for Each of Us" Rabbi Merrill Shapiro, President, National Board of Trustees, Americans United for Separation of Church and State In light of the U.S. Supreme Court's recent misguided ruling to allow prayer at government meetings (in Town of Greece v. Galloway), Americans United has launched a multi-pronged plan titled, "Operation Inclusion," designed to protect ALL Americans.
May 19, 2014 "Questioning Questioning Darwin" David R. Simon, PhD and Jocque Soskis, J.D., Co-presenters In-depth analysis of recent HBO documentary film, Questioning Darwin.
April 21, 2014 “Socrates on the Pious and the Just:  Was Socrates a closet freethinker?" Paul M. Carelli, PhD, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, UNF Was Socrates really a closet freethinker?  Come and foud out!
March 17, 2014 “Motivating Health Care Facilities to Meet the Needs of Secular Patients” Joe Beck, MSW (ret.), Humanist Chaplain; Founder and Chair, Humanists of the Treasure Coast Secular patients are not accorded the same level of support and recognition in health care facilities, especially hospices, as are religious patients.  You will learn the extent of this problem and find out what you can do to help.
Feb. 17, 2014 “Charles Darwin:  His Life and His Voyage on the HMS Beagle” Jim Strayer, retired biology educator, Darwin expert What made Charles Darwin tick?  How did he come to abandon his ministerial studies and embark on a path of discovery that would change science forever?
Jan. 20, 2014 “The Truth Virus:  It’s All Plato’s Fault (or, Why All Truths Are Lies)” Jack Maurice (“Orlando Jack”), founder of the Orlando Humanist Association and the Orlando Coalition of Reason What if you had a virus in your brain?  What if it were a cognitive virus, a kind of cognitive AIDS?  How would it affect your thinking?  How did you get infected with the virus? Is there a CURE?
Dec. 16, 2013 “Tenth Annual Human Light Celebration” Celebrate the season, Install 2014 officers, recognize 2013 accomplishments, envision future direction. (No lecture.) Gather at 6:30 p.m. at the BELLA VITA Italian Restaurant, 3825 Baymeadows Rd., Jax,  32217.  Dine at 7:00 (order from the menu).  Ceremonies to follow.  RSVP to Carrie.
Nov. 18, 2013 “In Preparation for Comet ISON 2012, November-December 2013” Jay S. Huebner, BSEE, MS & PhD, Physics, Visiting Research Professor, Sensors Group, Physics Department, UNF This comet is named for a telescope system (the International Scientific Optical Network) used to discover it and for the year it was discovered.  It could be the brightest comet anyone alive now has ever seen!
Oct. 21, 2013 "The Jobs Are Coming Back, But They're Just Visiting: The Welfare State, the Singularity, and the Automation of Production” Joque Soskis, retired UNF faculty member, retired Florida Bar member, teacher, author Joque will discuss the impact that the approaching singularity in artificial intelligence will have on production and hence, the economy.
Sept. 9, 2013 "Freedom from Religion:  Past, Present, and Future" Dan Barker, Co-Director, Freedom from Religion Foundation Dan will be speaking from his vast amount of experience in the freethought movement.  You will not want to miss this special meeting!
Aug. 19, 2013 "How Atheists, Freethinkers, and Humanists Deal with Death and Religious Consolations" Richard T. Hull, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Department of Philosophy, SUNY Buffalo, Author, Editor, Bioethicist, Humanist Richard will examine how nonreligious folks handle the loss of a loved one, as well as how they handle the consolations of believers.
July 15, 2013

"The Tin Man, Scarecrow, Lion, and Dorothy:  Finding Community on the Yellow Brick Road"
Video link

Teresa MacBain, former Methodist minister, recent recipient of the American Atheists' 2012 "Atheist of the Year" award What is community? Should we seek out community?  Is religion the only place where community is found?  Or necessary?  Join us as Teresa explores the answers.  You might be surprised!
June 17, 2013 "Framing the Question of Value: The Problem of Environmental Ethics" Erich Freiberger, PhD, Professor of Philosophy, Division of Humanities, Jacksonville University As we confront the reality of global climate change, can ethics help us assess the scope of the problem and help us identify solutions?
May 20, 2013 "Understanding the Economic Crisis: A Neo-Marxist Perspective"
Video link
David Jaffee, PhD, Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of North Florida Is the current U.S. economic crisis an anomaly, or is it an inherent and predictable feature of capitalism?  Under prevailing conditions, what are the prospects for a sustained recovery?
April 15, 2013

"From Nundom to Freedom"
Video link

Former Catholic nun, Liz Murad, now freethinker and humanist Liz shares the remarkable story of her long journey from faith in the unbelievable to life in reality, and all the stops in between.
March 18, 2013 "New Revelations in the JFK Assassination Case" David R. Simon, PhD, Research Fellow (Ret.), Institute of Public and International Policy, University of North Florida There are now over 1,000 books, 2,000 articles, and tens of documentaries about President Kennedy's murder.  New shocking information reveals facts about the number of the President's wounds, the single bullet, and many other aspects of the case.
Feb. 18, 2013 "That Complex Whole:  Darwinian Approaches to Cultural Evolution" Gordon F.M. Rakita, PhD, RPA, Associate Professor of Anthropology,
Dept. of Sociology & Anthropology, UNF
Culture changes... but does it evolve?  How has Darwin's theory of evolution been applied to human culture and what can we learn about how we live and the things around us by applying Darwin's universal acid?
Jan. 21, 2013 "Crimes Against Logic:  Identifying Errors in Reasoning" Earl Coggins, President and Founder, First Coast Freethought Society, Inc. Learn about non sequiturs, slippery slopes, false dichotomies, and other logical fallacies as we explore "Crimes Against Logic."
Dec. 17, 2012 Ninth Annual "Human Light Celebration" Installation of 2013 officers and 2012 recognitions. (No formal lecture tonight, just a party!) Covered Dish Dinner to be held downstairs in the Social Hall of the Unitarian Church where we regularly meet. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. dine at 7:00 p.m., ceremonies to follow.
Nov. 19, 2012 "The Best Speech Ever... Really."  (Or, why America is smart enough to have left plenty of room for improvement.)
Video link
Ken Hurley, Co-founder and Director, Civication, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting civics education and civil responsibility. A free speech by Ken Hurley.  Lively Q&A and discussions to follow.
Oct. 15, 2012 "Where's the 'freedom' in Ballot Amendment 8, The Florida Religious Freedom Amendment?" Rabbi Merrill Shapiro, President, National Board of Trustees of Americans United for Separation of Church and State "Ballot Amendment 8 is a wonderful vehicle to gaining important insights into the workings of the Florida State legislature."  Shapiro will teach us to truly appreciate how Amendment 8 keeps on giving!
Sept. 17, 2012 "What's Really at Stake in the 2012 Election? It's Not What You Think." David R. Simon, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow, Institute of Public and International Policy, University of North Florida Dr. Simon plans to talk about the hidden agendas of this election.  He says, "This will be a genuine exercise in freethought and not a partisan diatribe for or against either party."
Aug. 20, 2012 "The Devil Made Me Do It:  What Light Can Neuroscience Shed on the Problem of Free Will?" Elaine Hull, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience, Florida State University, Tallahassee Recently, neuroscientists have been seeing if there are ways of testing whether free will is genuine or an illusion.  Come and learn what research indicates!
July 16, 2012 "Corporations Are Persons, and So What?" Mitchell Haney, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Dept. of Philosophy; a Director of the Florida Blue Center for Ethics, at UNF Dr. Haney will argue first that there is nothing spooky about corporate personhood; and second, if corporations are persons, this need not have any sinister effects on our moral or political lives.
June 18, 2012 "What Would Socrates Ask?" Karla Pierce, M.A., Adjunct Philosophy Instructor, Florida State College at Jacksonville, and Jacksonville University Join us for an educational, interactive workshop designed to hone your critical thinking and critical questioning skills.  Critical thinking is an essential component of freethought.
May 21, 2012 "The Truth About True Crime:  It's Not What You Think!" David R. Simon, Ph.D., Research Fellow (Ret.), Institute of Public and International Policy, University of North Florida An estimated 95% of what the public knows about crime comes from the mass media (TV news, CSI shows, movies, and an occasional book).  Come and learn the TRUTH about true crime.
April, 16, 2012 "The Politics of Harry Potter" David Schwam-Baird, Ph.D., Department of Political Science and Public Administration, University of North Florida The Harry Potter series is a social and cultural phenomenon which raises some interesting and troubling moral and ethical questions.  It has also been attacked as anti-Christian.  Definitely worth exploring!
March 2012 "Taxpayer-Funded Religion in Florida" Mark Palmer, Esq., Executive Director, Humanists of Florida Association Mark will explain why this November's Amendment 8 (Removal of the No-Aid Clause) and Senate Bill 98 (Prayer at Public School Assemblies) threaten the freedoms of religion and belief of all Floridians.
Feb. 20, 2012 "What Does Evolution Mean for Ethics?" Scott Kimbrough, Ph.D., Chair, Division of Humanities, Jacksonville University Does evolutionary theory provide a new foundation for ethics?  Or does it show our ethical commitments to be groundless products of natural selection?
Jan. 16, 2012

"What Would Socrates Ask?"

MEETING CANCELLED DUE TO A PLUMBING PROBLEM.

Rescheduled for June 2012.

Karla Pierce, M.A., Adjunct Philosophy Instructor, Florida State College at Jacksonville, Jacksonville University Join us for an educational, interactive workshop designed to hone your critical thinking and critical questioning skills.  Critical thinking is an essential component to freethought.
Dec. 19, 2011 Eighth Annual "Human Light Celebration" Installation of 2012 officers, 2011 awards and recognitions. (No formal lecture tonight, just a party!) Covered Dish Dinner to be held downstairs in the Social Hall of the Unitarian Church where we regularly meet. Gather at 6:00 p.m. for social hour, dine at 7:00 p.m., ceremonies at 8:00 p.m.
Nov. 21, 2011 "King Louis XVI's Timing was Terrible. Will Ours be Better?"
Lecture notes:Click here for PDf of lecture notes.
Joque H. Soskis, retired UNF faculty member, past member and official of the faculty union of the State University System, retired member of the Florida Bar, author, freethinker. In other words, Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette waited too long to remedy the economic distress of their citizenry. Can we learn from their mistake?
Oct. 17 2011 "Refledtions on the Arab Spring: What Do We Need to be Asking? David Schwam-Baird, Ph.D., Department of Political Science and Public Administration, UNF When the rebellion in Tunisia spread to Egypt, then to Bahrain and on to Jordan, Yemen, Libia, and Syria, there was hope that the way was opening for democracy to fluorish. Is this the case?
Sept. 19, 2011 "Analytical Conflict Transformation: How to Transform a Dispute into Meaningful Dialogue" Casey Welch, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Sociology and Criminology, Dept. of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Flagler College, St. Augustine, FL In another of our series, "Building Bridges Beyond Belief," Casey and Earl will be discussing the use of Analytical Conflict Transformation (ACT) in everyday life and especially as it pertains to the freethought movement.
Aug. 15, 2011 "The Neurophysiology of Religious Experience" Elaine Hull, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience, Florida State University, Tallahassee A number of brain imaging studies have shown increases and decreases in activity in specific brain areas during
religious experiences. In addition, epilepsy and some serotonergic drugs can trigger religious experiences. What may (or may not!) be common to all of these experiences?
July 18, 2011 "Opinions, Dominions, and Great Virginians: The Hope for Civil Discourse"
Video
Ken Hurley, Co-Founder and Director of Civication, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting civics education and civil responsibility. What elements are necessary for an opinion? How do you form your opinions? Does it sometimes seem that everyone else is wrong? Come be part of the audience and share your opinions...
 
June 20, 2011 "Building Bridges Beyond Belief: Dialogue With a Bridge-Building Hospital Chaplain Presenters: Ed Wilder, M. Div., M. Ed., Senior Chaplain, Baptist Medical Center South; and Earl Coggins, President and Founder, FCFS

Ed and Earl will be discussing Ed's "Multi-faith Educational Program" designed to bring awareness to Baptist South employees of the many diverse worldviews (including nontheistic) held by hospital patients and how to accommodate them.

May 16, 2011 "New Biblical Problems: Pseudepigraphy, Pseudonymity, Contradictions, and Failed Prophecies" David R. Simon, Ph.D., Research Fellow, Institute of Public and International Policy, University of North Florida Recent biblical scholarship has uncovered a multitude of problems with both the old and new testaments including plagiarization, multiple authorship of the same books, failed prophecies, and more.
April 18, 2011 "Origin and Structure of the Universe" Jay S. Huebner, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus and Visiting Research Professor, Physics Department Dr. Huebner will explain how great telescopes and other scientific advances allow us to discern much of the large-scale history and origin of the universe.
March 21, 2011 "Ethics, Truth, and Politics: Three things rarely found in the same place" Scott Shine, former City of Jacksonville Ethics Commissioner and local Political Consultant Come and learn about the Jacksonville Ethics Commission, its mission, workings, accomplishments, projects.
Feb. 21, 2011 "Evolution vs. Creation: What does the evidence say?" Anthony M. Rossi, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Biology, University of North Florida Join us as we celebrate the birth month of evolutionary biologist Charles Darwin and examine the evidence for his great contributions to our understanding of life on this planet.
Jan. 24, 2011 "More Dialogue With a Muslim: Discussion Continues" Parvez Ahmed, Ph.D., Member, Jacksonville Human Rights Commission; Associate Professor of Finance, UNF; Fulbright Scholar; Muslim; and Folio Weekly Person of the Year The September 2010 FCFS meeting, "Building Bridges Beyond Belief: Dialogue with a Muslim" was so well received that many people wanted him to come back. Dr. Ahmed has graciously agreed to rreturn so the discussion may continue. Come and have your questions answered.
Dec. 20, 2010 Seventh Annual "Human Light Celebration" Installation of 2011 officers, 2010 awards and recognitions. (No formal lecture tonight, just a party!) Covered Dish Dinner to be held downstairs in the Social Hall of the Unitarian Church where we regularly meet. Gather at 6:00 p.m. for social hour, dine at 7:00 p.m., ceremonies at 8:00 p.m.
Nov. 15 2010 "What Can Possibly Explain All This? or, a Scientist Seeks a Unifying Theory for Everything About America"
Video
Joque H. Soskis, retired UNF faculty member, past member and official of the faculty union of the State University System, retired member of the Florida Bar, author, freethinker. Joque will explore why Americans seem not to be too concerned about the various ways in which things in the U. S. are deteriorating relative to other industrialized democracies. He will cite examples, suggest an explanation, and host a lively Q&A afterwards.
Oct. 18, 2010 "Cretaceous Park: Paleontology Adventures in Southern Utah" L. Barry Albright, Ph.D., vertebrate paleontologist, author, and a professor of Earth Science, Dept. of Physics, UNF Dr. Albright discovered a new species of dinosaur, a rare sickle-clawed dinosaur, the Nothronychus graffami. He has just returned from a dig in Southern Utah and Mongolia.
Sept. 20, 2010 "Building Bridges Beyond Belief: Dialogue with a Muslim"
Video
Parvez Ahmed, Ph.D., Member, Jacksonville Human Rights Commission; Associate Professor of Finance, UNF; Fulbright Scholar; Muslim talks with Earl Coggins, President, FCFS; Freethinker; Secular Humanist FCFS President Earl Coggins will be holding the second dialogue in his series, "Building Bridges Beyone Belief." The first was with a Baptist minister, this one is with a Muslim! They will be discussing differences in the Muslim and atheist worldviews. Dr. Ahmed is a frequent commentator on Islam and the Muslim American Experience.
Aug. 16, 2010 "Marriage = 1 Man + 1 Woman--or Does It? Richard T. Hull, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Philosophy, SUNY Buffalo; Author, Editor, Bioethicist, and Humanist In dialogue form with two characters previously introduced at FCFS meetings (Dr. Phil the Philosophy Professor and Rose the Catholic), Richard Hull reviews the reasons pro and con for seeking to limit marriage to one man plus one woman. This dialogue is updated for recent court decisions.
July 19, 2010 "Christian Roots of the U.S. Constitution--Real or Imagined?" Justin DePlato, Ph.D., Department of Political Science and Public Administration, UNF Dr. DePlato will be focusing on the intellectual merits and empirics to determine whether the Framers intended for America to be a "christian" nation, a secular nation, or even a pluralistic religious community.
June 21, 2010 "Where Was God: Evil, Theodicy, and Modern Science" We welcome back Author and Humanist Gary A. Stilwell, Ph.D., (who gave us a talk last year based on his book, Christianity: 5000 Years of History and Development"). Dr. Stilwell will be discussing his newest book, "Where Was God." He will have books available at the meeting. NOTE: The Humanist Book Discussion Group will be discussing this book on June 6, 2010. (See Book Discussion Group link for details.)
May 17, 2010 "Crime and Religion"
Video
David R. Simon, Ph.D., Research Fellow, Institute of Public and International Policy, University of North Florida Dr. Simon will examine the numerous relationships between crime and religion. Have you ever wondered if religiosity reduces delinquency and adult crime? Why are there sexual abuse and other scandals among the clergy? And more! The results may surprise you.
April 19, 2010 "What Should It Mean To Be an American?" followed immediately by lively discussion.
Video
Ken Hurley, Founder and Director of Civication, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting civics education and civil responsibility. Consider these: I Have a Dream. The American Dream. United We Stand. We The People. In God We Trust. Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death. Don't Tread On Me. My Country Right or Wrong. God Bless America....
March 15, 2010 "The Morals and Ethics of a 'Godless Person'" "Orlando Jack" (a.k.a. Jack Maurice), Founder and President, Orlando Area Atheists and Freethinkers Meetup Group Jack poses the following questions: Does religion paralyze morality? Are you, dear freethinker, an ethical person? a person of good morals? What makes you a good person? By whose standards are you leading a good, ethical life??
Feb. 15, 2010
Celebrate Darwin's birth monthwith us, as we listen to "Of Metaphysics and Missing Links: Ardipithecus ramidus and Modeling Human Evolution"
Gordon F. Rakita, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Anthropology with the Dept. of Sociology and Anthropology, University of North Florida Dr. Rakita's areas of expertise include evolutionary theory, bioarcheology, and human skeletal biology. He will discuss fossils and models of human evolution, why the "Ardi" finds are so important, and "missing links."
Jan. 18, 2010 "Theism and Atheism: A Dialogue About Building Bridges"
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Rev. Harry Parrott, Baptist Minister; and Earl Coggins, President, FCFS; hosted by Ken Hurley, Director, Civication, Inc. Come, listen, and participate as FCFS president and a local Baptist discuss pertinent issues in the theism vs. atheism battle going on for the last 2000 years. Covering historical and contemporary issues, this is sure to kick off 2010 with a bang.

Dec. 21, 2009

Sixth Annual "Human Light Celebration" Installation of 2010 officers, 2009 awards and recognitions. (No lecture or educational program tonight, just a party!) Covered Dish Dinner to be held downstairs in the Social Hall of the Unitarian Church, 7405 Arlington Expressway. Gather at 6:00 p.m. for social hour, dine at 7:00 p.m., ceremonies at 8:00.
Nov. 16, 2009 "An Overview of Church/State Separation Issues on Florida's First Coast" Jeff Brumley, Staff Writer with the Florida Times-Union Come and hear the man who has his finger on the pulse of the First Coast discuss this controversial subject. His talk will be followed by a lively Q&A.
Oct. 19, 2009 "What was Jesus' Good News?" Author Gary A. Stilwell, Ph.D., (who has most recently written, Where Was God: Evil, Theodicy, and Modern Science). This topic is based on Dr. Stillwell's book, Christianity: 5000 Years of History and Development. NOTE: The Humanist Book Discussion Group will be discussing this book on October 4, 2009. (See Book Group link.)
Sept. 21, 2009 "To Separate or Not to Separate: How Other Countries Deal With Questions of Church and State" David Schwam-Baird, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Dept. of Political Science and Public Administration, University of North Florida We will explore how various democratic foreign countries approach the sensitive issues surrounding the question of Church-State separation.
Aug. 17, 2009 "Tales of the Club-footed Boy: How has man answered life’s fundamental questions: How did we get here? What is our purpose? Where are we going?" Pam C. Dement-Liebenow, Professor of Biological Sciences, Florida Community College at Jacksonville Join us as we examine creation stories throughout man’s history and compare them to the facts that scientists have discovered.
July 20, 2009 "A Baptist Minister Reflects on the Freethought Tradition." Reverend Harry B. Parrott, Jr., President, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, Clay County Chapter, and ordained Baptist Minister Rev. Parrott will discuss his understanding of the freethought tradition, some views on religion, and our common ancestry regarding separation of church and state.
June 15, 2009 "The History of Social Control" Casey Welch, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Sociology and Criminology, Dept. of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Flagler College, Saint Augustine, FL Religion is just one of many sources of social control. Come and learn more!
May 18, 2009 "The History of Creationism in Florida" Joe Wolf, President, Florida Citizens for Science Florida has a long and glorious (ignoble) history of creationist activity lasting to today. Hear the ongoing saga of the continued struggle to teach real science (evolution), rather than creationism ("intelligent design") in Florida public schools.
April 20, 2009 "Idiots, Activist Judges, Civics, and the United States Supreme Court"
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Ken Hurley, Founder and Director, Civication, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting civics education and civil responsibility; and former Director of the Board, Florida ACLU, and President, Northeast Florida Chapter of the ACLU from 2001-2007. What's in a name? AND... How might new judicial nominations shape the philosophical direction of the Supreme Court? May we rest easy? How might the court view issues such as abortion rights, privacy rights, detention policies, executive power, gay marriage, voting rights, and our Pledge of Allegiance?
March 16, 2009 "Without God, Whence Cometh Morality?" Richard T. Hull, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at SUNY Buffalo; editor, author, educator, ethics scholar, and Humanist Come and explore with us the origins of morality, ethics, values, etc. Dr. Hull's presentation will be followed by a lively question and Answer session.
Feb. 16, 2009 "Happy Birthday, Charles Darwin: A Retrospective" Anthony M. Rossi, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Biology, University of North Florida Join us as we celebrate the birthday anniversary of evolutionary biologist Charles Darwin and the examine the great contributions he made to our understanding of life on this planet.
Jan. 19, 2009 "Positive Atheism: Presenting the Merits of Disbelief" Earl Coggins, Founder and President, First Coast Freethought Society, Inc. Non-believers have been described as unethical and immoral. They are unelectable to most public offices and have even been called Satan-worshipers. Earl Coggins looks at the virtues and benefits of having no religious beliefs. He will discuss the importance of framing disbelief in a positive light.
Dec. 15, 2008 Fifth Annual "Human Light Celebration" Party! Installation of 2009 officers, 2008 awards and recognitions. (No educational program tonight.) Covered Dish Dinner to be held downstairs in the Social Hall of the Unitarian Church, Arlington Expressway. Gather at 6:00 p.m. for social hour, dine at 7:00 p.m., ceremonies at 8:00.
Nov. 17, 2008 "Analysis of the 2008 Elections" Matthew Corrigan, Ph.D., Chair and Associate Professor, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, University of North Florida Join us as Dr. Matthew Corrigan analyzes the 2008 election results and explores their implications for our future.
Oct. 20, 2008 "It's a BA-by!" Richard T. Hull, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at SUNY Buffalo; Founder and President, Tallahassee Center for Inquiry; author, editor, bioethics scholar, and Humanist. With Dr. Hull we will explore early pre-embryo metaphysics and the ethics of early abortion and stem-cell harvesting. He will explain why these procedures don't harm any individual human beings. He will also try to answer the question, When do we become persons? His account is novel and was recently published in the Journal of Medicine and Philosophy.
Sept. 15, 2008

"Subverting our Constitutions: When Should a Constitution Be Changed?"
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David Schwam-Baird, Ph.D., Professor of Political Science and Public Policy, University of North Florida Dr. Schwam-Baird plans to discuss several amendment issues ("2, 7, 9") which will be coming up for a vote in November and about which the FCFS is very concerned. He will tie this in with state and federal constitutions.
Aug. 18, 2008

Exploring the different "Flavors of Freethought"
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Nationally-known speaker, Mel Lipman, President, American Humanist Association Humanism, agnosticism, atheism, freethought? What do these words mean? Is there a difference? What is the difference? Come to our meeting and find out!
July 21, 2008 "Conflict Transformation" Casey Welch, Ph.D.,
Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of North Florida
Conflict is omnipresent. Responses to conflict can be highly enlightening and valuable for all who are experiencing and managing them. Want to learn more?
June 16, 2008 "The Process is Due: Gitmo and America's Constitutional Values" followed by Lively Q & A. Ken Hurley, Interim Director, ACLU of Florida, Northeast Regional Office What happened to due process? Which process is due? How can people be detained for years without charges? How can the "War on Terror" end? Are there really constitutional values?
May 19, 2008 "Why Religion Won't Go Away" John Anderson, Ph.D., Department of Chemistry and Physics, University of North Florida The world's religions are not going to go away, but they could evolve.
April 21, 2008 "Psychoanalysis and Science" Erich Freiberger, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Philosophy, Jacksonville University Dr. Freiberger will explore some of the basic assumptions we make when we take up the quest to be scientific in relation to a field such as psychoanalysis.
March 17, 2008 "Positive Humanism: How Humanism Fits into a Participatory Democracy" Heather Wellman, former Executive Director, Humanists of Florida Association Heather is an experienced, entertaining and informative speaker. This is a good time to bring friends!
Feb. 18, 2008 "What Genetics Tells Us about Evolution" Matthew Gilg, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Biology, UNF Celebrate Darwin's birthday! Come to an overview of genetic data and learn what it actually teaches us.
Jan. 21, 2008 "Crime Perpetrated by Religious Groups Throughout History" David R. Simon, Ph.D., retired criminology professor, author. Can the "holy" perhaps not be so holy, after all? A real eye-opener!
Dec. 17, 2007 Fourth Annual "Human Light Celebration" Party! Installation of 2008 officers, 2007 awards. (No educational program tonight.) Covered Dish Dinner to be held downstairs in the Social Hall of the Unitarian Church, Arlington Expressway. Gather at 6:00 p.m., dine at 7:00 p.m., ceremonies at 8:00
Nov. 19, 2007 "Defining Atheism: Exposing the Myths, Revealing the Taboos" Earl Coggins, Founder and Spokesperson for the FCFS Earl will define, dissect, explore, and examine atheism from many angles.
Oct. 15, 2007 "What is the future of secularism in the Middle East?" David Schwam-Baird, Ph.D., Professor, Dept. of Political Science and Public Administration, University of North Florida Dr. Schwam-Baird, a recognized expert in the politics of the Middle East will examine the possibilities for secularism, there.
Sept. 17, 2007 "The Pursuit of Happiness: A Humanist Mandate" Jennifer Hancock, past Associate Director, Humanists of Florida Association; now writer and humanist activist To learn more, visit her website, http://www.sumogirl.com/ which contains the her thoughts, opinions, and creative pursuits. Included on the site is her Humanist counter to the advice given by televangelist Billy Graham!
Aug. 20, 2007 "Buy the Funeral You Want at a Reasonable Price: Funeral industry secrets revealed" Hugo Borresen, Founder of the Funeral Consumers Alliance of Greater Jacksonville Knowledge is the key to avoid being ripped off by the funeral industry in a time of personal tragedy, stress, and distress.
July 16, 2007 "How Religion is Approached/Treated in Academia." Satya Pachori, Ph.D., Ret., Professor of English, UNF; Editor Emeritus of the South Asian Review Dr. Pachori will examine how the subject of religion is handled (approached, discussed) in academia.
June 18, 2007 Top-down vs. Bottom-up Societal Structures: A Historical Perspective Frank P. Besag, Ph.D., Sociology Professor Dr. Besag's own words, he will discuss the history, geography, economics, and religion of slavery and "top-down" versus "bottom up" societal structures.
May 21, 2007 "The Culture Wars: How Humanism Fits In" Heather Wellman, Executive Director, Humanists of Florida Association This new humanist leader will be discussing her view of the future of humanism and the direction of the HFA.
April 16, 2007 "Divine Command Theory" Is all morality dependent upon the will of God? Come and find out! Ellen Wagner, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Dept. of Philosophy, University of North Florida This term can be used to refer to any one of a family of related ethical theories which all take "God’s will" to be the foundation of ethics.
March 19, 2007 "Pasteur and Koch, Two Giants of the Scientific Method" Jim Strayer, retired biology teacher from Ormond Beach, Florida Get the real scoop on Science vs. Superstition!
Feb. 19, 2007 Florida Citizens for Science: "Science's New Pep Squad in Florida" Joe Wolf, President, Florida Citizens for Science Florida Citizens for Science: Their goals, achievements, and aspirations.
Jan. 15, 2007 "Why Bogus Therapies Often Seem to Work" Barry L. Beyerstein, Ph.D., professor of neuropsychology at Simon Fraser University in Canada, and a leading skeptic Video of presentation given at a recent conference of the Center for Inquiry, Florida.
Dec. 18, 2006 Third Annual "Human Light Celebration" Installation of 2007 officers, 2006 awards. (No formal program tonight.) Covered Dish Dinner to be held downstairs in the Social Hall of the Unitarian Church, Arlington Expressway.
Nov. 20, 2006 "Is Freethought Really Free? It may be imprisoned by its need to be free from all religion and spirituality.” Rev. John L. Young is the minister of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Jacksonville where we meet. Dr. Young will be discussing trends within Unitarian Universalism, the relationships of Unitarian Universalism with secular humanism and freethought, and our shared interests on many issues.
Nov. 13, 2006 "SCIENCE UNDER SIEGE: The Attack on Evolution" Special event, co-sponsored by FCFS and UNF.
Tony Rossi, Ph.D., Matthew Gilg, Ph.D., Jay Huebner, Ph.D. Gordon Rakita, Ph.D Moderator: Ken Hurley. A panel discussion (also Q&A) stressing the importance of teaching
evolutionary theory in the classroom. To be held in the University Center of University of North Florida. Free parking. Free admission.
Oct. 16, 2006 "Ra, Blue Blankies, Ghosts, Holy Ghosts, and Flying Spaghetti Monsters: Should we tolerate the intolerable?" Ken Hurley, President, Greater Jacksonville Chapter of the ACLU Ken is a dynamic, entertaining speaker, always with a thought-provoking, worthwhile message.
Sept. 18, 2006 "Philosophical Speculation: What it is, what it has achieved and why we still need it." Erich Freiberger, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Philosophy, Jacksonville University Dr. Freiberger maintains "it is the way of inquiry that leads to science." He proposes that science needs such speculation if it is to progress into new domains.
Aug. 21, 2006 "Examining Crime from a Scientific Perspective" Christine Rasche, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Criminal Justice, UNF Dr. Rasche is a leader in her field. She has developed numerous programs, among them, the criminal justice program at UNF.
July 17, 2006 "Polishing our Crystal Ball: Planning the future of the FCFS" Curtis Wolf, Chair, Long-Range Planning Committee; and Vice President, FCFS A brainstorming, workshop-type session. Come and share your thoughts.
June 19, 2006 "Alternative Ethical Systems for Freethinkers" Ellen Wagner, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Dept. of Philosophy, University of North Florida If we do not base ethics on the Bible or any other "sacred" text, on what do we base them? What alternative ethical systems are available to freethinkers?
May 15, 2006 "SOS, Sobriety without a Higher Power, The Humanist Path to Sober Living" Bob Stevenson, from the CFI Daytona SOS (Secular Organizations for Sobriety) provide an alternative recovery method for alcoholics and drug addicts who are not comfortable with the spiritual content of the12-Step programs.
April 17, 2006 "What the Founding Fathers Really Meant by Separation of Church and State" David Schwam-Baird, Ph.D., Professor of Political Science and Public Policy, University of North Florida An examination of the secular origins of the U.S. Constitution. Is the U.S. a Christian nation, as many people claim?
March 20, 2006 "Crossed-Up in Starke" Lon Bevill A discussion about efforts to remove a publicly funded cross from the water tower in Starke, Florida.
Feb. 20, 2006 "The Study Circles Initiative and the Faith-Based Community" Charlene Taylor Hill, Executive Director, Jacksonville Human Rights Commission; and Bill David, Program Manager Charlene and Bill will discuss the goals and plans of the Jacksonville Human Rights Commission.
Jan. 16, 2006 "Examining Fundamentalism" Julie Ingersoll, Ph.D., Professor of Religious Studies, UNF Dr. Ingersoll will examine fundamentalism from all angles.
Dec. 19, 2005 Second Annual "Human Light Celebration" A party - no formal program tonight. Covered Dish Dinner to be held in the Social Hall of the UUCJ.
Nov. 21, 2005 "Benefits and Hazards of Atheism" Earl Coggins, Moderator Come and participate in a round table discussion on rejecting the supernatural.
Oct. 17, 2005 "Understanding the Fundamentalist Mind" Greg Warner Mr. Warner is executive editor of the Associated Baptist Press news service.
Sept. 19, 2005 "Losing God Saved My Life" Jay Mooney How an ex-Congressional aide overcame addiction through freehought.
Aug. 15, 2005 "A Double-Super-Secret No-Take-Backs Discussion" Ken Hurley, President, Greater Jacksonville Chapter of the ACLU Ken is a dynamic, entertaining speaker, always with a worthwhile message.
July 11, 2005 "Mom's Funeral" Earl Coggins, Founder, First Coast Freethought Society Come and hear the first-person account of one atheist versus his Christian family.
June 13, 2005 "Social Security Reform Examined" Bob Childers, retired, having worked almost 40 years for the Social Security Administration. Mr. Childers is still active with the National Committee to Preserve SS & Medicare. Come and learn the facts about Social Security Reform.
May 9, 2005 "Banned Books" Rona Brinlee Ms. Brinlee, owner of the Bookmark Book Store at Atlantic Beach will be discussing banned books. Some facts might surprise you!
April 11, 2005 “Let's Make Humanism Matter” Jerry Lieberman, President, Humanists of Florida Association Exploring pathways for humanists to gain greater acceptance and influence in our society.
March 14, 2005 "Global Warming: Potential Shifts in Biological Processes" Anthony M. Rossi, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Biology at UNF Dr. Rossi will examine whether global warming is actually occurring, whether the temperature increase is part of the natural weather cycle, etc.
Feb. 14, 2005 "The State of Education in Duval County Public Schools" Laura Lane Laura Lane, with the JCCI, will discuss studies and findings of the JCCI concerning education in the public schools and mention some of the other JCCI projects as well.
Jan. 10, 2005 "The Cost of Free Speech, Pulpit Politics, Moral Values, Fishing, and the Big Lies" Ken Hurley, ACLU Ken is President, ACLU of Greater Jacksonville (including the counties of Baker, Clay, Duval, Nassau, and St. John’s).
Dec. 13, 2004 "Human Light Celebration" Members and friends will discuss the past, present, and future of the FCFS. (No formal program.) Covered Dish Dinner to be held in the Social Hall of the Unitarian Church.
Nov. 8, 2004 "What I've Discovered About the Roots of Our Country's Continual Involvement in Wars" David Henderson, with the organization Wage Peace, Inc. Mr. Henderson thinks that our getting out of Iraq is not enough; that stopping our involvement in unnecessary wars should be our goal.
Oct. 11, 2004 "A Brief History of Just War Theory" Erich Freiberger, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Philosophy, JU Dr. Freiberger will introduce Just War theory and discuss and explain Just War Theory and show how it applies to Iraq, today.
Sept. 13, 2004 "Buddhism: A Nontheistic Mystical Discipline" William A. Mendoza, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Jacksonville University Dr. William Mendoza currently teaches physics and engineering at JU but has degrees in psychology and in rehabilitation services as well. He an avid student of Eastern religions.
Aug. 9, 2004 "The Status of Reproductive Health" Lauren Jones, Coordinator of Public Policy, Health Educator, Planned Parenthood of Northeast Florida Ms. Jones will discuss the history and current status of reproductive health and birth control under the Bush administration.
July 12, 2004 "There an Estuary Next Door" Maia McGuire, Ph.D., University of Florida Sea Grant Extension Agent for Nassau, Duval, St. Johns, and Flagler counties. Dr. McGuire will discuss the biology and ecology of estuaries as well as human threats to estuaries and ways to minimize negative impact on coastal environments.
June 14, 2004 "What Is the Good Life?" Ellen Wagner, Ph.D., Asst. Professor of Philosophy, UNF Dr. Wagner will discuss the ancient Greeks' concept (Aristotle's in particular) of what it took to lead a good life. Different from today's concept!
May 10, 2004 “The debate between evolution and creation ‘science’.” Anthony M. Rossi, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Biology, UNF Dr. Rossi will explain evolution and explore the controversial debate between evolution and creation "science."
April 12, 2004 “The Schiavo Case: Moral Quandaries and Legal Pitfalls in Surrogate Decision Making” Assya Pascalev, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Philosophy, UNF Dr. Pascalev's specialties include bioethics, ethics, social philosophy, and aesthetics. She will be discussing the bioethics involving Terry Schiavo
March 8, 2004 "Myths About Crime and Criminal Justice" David Simon, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor of Criminology and Social Justice, UNF Dr. Simon will examine how images of crime, criminals, and criminal justice agencies are represented unrealistically by the media.
Feb. 9, 2004 "Endowed by their Creator. . . Considering the Origins of Civil Rights" Ken Hurley, President, ACLU, Greater Jacksonville Chapter Ken will explore the nature of “rights.” Are rights God given? Are rights discovered? From whence do our rights come?
Jan. 12, 2004 "The Middle East -- Right Now!?" David Schwam-Baird, Ph.D., Political Science Professor, UNF Dr. Schwam-Baird will discuss developments in Iraq and in Israel-Palestine which seem to be changing by the minute--changing on the surface, at least.
Dec. 8, 2003 "The Humanist Foundations of Progress" Jennifer Hancock, Executive Director, Humanists of Florida Association Jennifer will discuss the relationship between humanism and social progress and discuss how American society is culturally humanist even if it does not embrace modern humanism.
Nov. 10, 2003 "Agnosticism" Erich Freiberger, Ph.D., Department of Philosophy, Jacksonville University Some reflections on the nature of human knowledge and our ability to know God in Plato, Epicurus, Kant, and Kierkegaard.
Oct. 13, 2003 “That’s What YOU Say!” Ellen Wagner, Ph.D., Professor of Philosophy, University of North Florida A workshop. Learn more about how to critically analyze claims and arguments someone makes.
Sept. 13, 2003 "Candidate Without a Prayer" Herb Sliverman, President and Founder, Secular Humanists of the Low Country in South Carolina Herb will recount his campaign for Governor of South Carolina, during which he challenged a South Carolina law requiring a religious belief in order to hold public office in that state.
Sept. 8, 2003 "The Baloney Detection Kit" Earl Coggins, Founder, First Coast Freethought Society A critical thinking skills guide to accurately distinguishing exposing pseudoscience from real science.
Aug. 11, 2003 "How Safe is Safe Enough?" Fred Altieri, Ph.D. Will touch upon the efficacy of the Homeland Security Office, examine the passing of laws restricting civil rights of individual citizens supposedly to make investigation and surveillance of suspicious people easier.
July 14, 2003 "The Fate of the Universe" Jay Huebner, Ph.D. Recent observations with some of the world's best telescopes indicate the expansion of the Universe has been accelerating...
June 10, 2003 "The History of State and Church Separation, Part II" Earl Coggins, Founder, First Coast Freethought Society America drifts from Jeffersonian and Madisonian principles in the 19th Century and the de facto Protestant Establishment.
May 12, 2003 "Congress Shall Make No Law Respecting an Establishment of Religion: A Brief History of the Separation of State and Church Part I" Earl Coggins, Founder, First Coast Freethought Society Why did our Founding Fathers place the religion clauses of our Bill of Rights at the very beginning, in the First Amendment? Did they intend to create a secular government, and if so, what lead them to believe it was the right thing to do?
April 14, 2003 "Whoosh! Was that our Constitution? The USA PATRIOT Act: Safety AND Freedom." Ken Hurley, President, ACLU, Greater Jacksonville Chapter Ken will examine the more troubling aspects and explain how the USA PATRIOT Act purports to alter the meaning of our Bill of Rights.
March 10, 2003 Logical Fallacies, and How to Make them Work for You Ellen Wagner, Ph.D., Department of Philosophy, UNF Logical Fallacies, an interactive workshop.
Feb. 10, 2003 "Biological Evolution" Hector Harima, Ph.D., Department of Biology, UNF Dr. Harima, Professor of Biology at FCCJ, will be discussing genetics and biological evolution.
Jan. 12, 2003 "War with Iraq?" David Schwam-Baird, Ph.D., Department of Political Science, UNF The clash of irrational policies.
March 16, 2015 David R. Simon, Ph.D., Sociologist