Thank you very much for letting me become a full member of the community, it is rather humbling to be in such company and I hope that I can live up to it.
First a little about myself. I live in Wisconsin and am a recovering Catholic. I was always pretty uneasy in my religious faith. I thought the people, overall, were pretty nice but in terms of prayer and such, nothing was happening inside of me. As I continued my Catholic education it all made less and less sense and one day when my church put up two displays next to each other, one “supporting the troops” in the latest war next to the crosses decrying all the “babies” killed in abortions, I could no longer take the hypocrisy and left. Since then I have felt it necessary to be an anti-theist even more than an atheist.
I teach psychology at a local technical college and am part of the Professors in Poverty movement. A few years ago Critical Thinking was added to my teaching portfolio, which I have enjoyed tremendously. Demographically, I am completely out of step. I am a very late Baby Boomer, but I waited a long time to have kids, so have a kid in high school and one in college as I approach retirement. I was a stay at home dad for almost 10 years, so have experienced life on the “minority” side.
As for what you can expect here, the title of the blog might give you some clues with its blending of Thomas Paine and Nick Lowe. I was toying with the title: “Atheist of Cool,” mostly because “Jesus of Atheism” was a bridge too far.
Other than that, I am sure I will be writing about politics, religion (especially from an ex-Catholic point of view), social justice and probably lots and lots of references to music and song lyrics. As to point of view, cognitive psychology, especially cognitive biases, informs my thinking about both politics and religion, so expect a lot of that. Also expect gaps in writing productivity as the beginning and ends of semesters ap
proach. Thinking ahead has never been my strong suit.
I hope you will take time to introduce yourself in the comments and that we can have an interesting conversation as time goes on.