The official blog of University of Missouri Skeptics, Atheists, Secular Humanists, & Agnostics

Congratulations to our writers! And, a religion quiz from Christian Science Monitor

Welcome to the official MU SASHA daily blog!

First time here? Read this.

Click here to Like our Page on Facebook (or use the sidebar if you’re logged in).
Local to Columbia? Join the Facebook Group, too!


Two things today!

Firstly, we recently celebrated posting our 200th blog article with a post by our president, Tony Lakey. When our blog passed 100 articles last year, we had a party with cake. We will likely be doing that again once we reach 250 articles in the fall!

Our 100th Blog Article Celebration cake. We asked the decorator to put a baby on it, and he obliged.

Early this morning, we also passed another benchmark: 150,000 views on our blog! We’re currently sitting around 150,250 views, for a straight average of about 730 views per article, and a total of about 750 comments since we started the blog in April of 2011. Wow! Not bad for a student group 🙂

I think blogging is one of the best ways to 1) stay informed about current events, 2) get practice writing and 3) get your name out there, especially if you are interested in taking a leadership role in a student group, or doing your own talks. I highly recommend getting into blogging if you are passionate about secularism and have an interest in writing or speaking, whether you’re in-the-closet about your atheism or not. If you would like to submit a guest post to this blog, we are always willing to consider new writers, whether it’s a one-time thing or more than that! We have several recurring guest writers currently, some of them Christians, also.

I’m very proud of all of our writers, and I hope that all of our readers have enjoyed the ride! Let’s keep it up for another 200! We will probably celebrate our 250th article with a party in the fall semester as well.

I have something else for you today: The Christian Science Monitor has put up a 32-question quiz about religion from the Pew Forum. They say that atheists score an average of 20.9 correct answers, with Jews averaging 20.5, and Mormons 20.3. Protestants got 16 correct answers on average, while Catholics got 14.7 questions right.

I got 31 out of 32 (missed the one about the First Great Awakening) – how did you do? Let us know in the comments below, and share this/tweet this! We are curious about the engagement and knowledge of you guys!

Until next time!

– Dave

Dave Muscato is the 2012 Writing Intern for the Secular Student Alliance in Columbus, Ohio. He is also Vice President of MU SASHA. He is a vegetarian, LGBTQ ally, and human- & animal-welfare activist. A junior at Mizzou studying economics & anthropology and minoring in philosophy & Latin, Dave posts updates to the SASHA blog every Monday, Thursday, and Saturday and twice monthly for the Humanist Community at Harvard. His website is

Follow Dave on Google+
Follow Dave on Twitter

Helpful resources: – Iron Chariots Wiki – Skeptics’ Annotated Bible / Skeptics’ Annotated Qur’an – –

YouTubers: Evid3nc3Thunderf00tTheAmazingAtheistThe Atheist ExperienceEdward CurrentNonStampCollectorMr. DeityRichard DawkinsQualiaSoup

Blogs: Greta ChristinaPZ MyersThe Friendly AtheistWWJTD?Debunking ChristianitySkepChick

and don’t forget… other SASHA members! We are here for you, too!

About Danielle Muscato

Danielle Muscato is a civil rights activist, writer, and public speaker. She has appeared on or been quoted in Rolling Stone, People, Time, The New York Times, SPIN, Entertainment Weekly, Billboard Magazine, and on MTV News, VH1, NPR, MSNBC, ABC, "The Real Story" with Gretchen Carlson, The O'Reilly Factor, Huffington Post Live, Huffington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Raw Story, CNN, CBS, and Howard Stern Danielle is the former Director of Public Relations for American Atheists. She is also a board member of MU SASHA (University of Missouri Skeptics, Atheists, Secular Humanists & Agnostics). Her website is Follow her on Google+ Follow her on Twitter @daniellemuscato Subscribe to her on YouTube at

10 comments on “Congratulations to our writers! And, a religion quiz from Christian Science Monitor

  1. Jared Cowan
    June 20, 2012

    The indonesia question tripped me up, though I think I took this before, so I should’ve gotten 32 out of 32, but my cultural presuppositions blinded me again. Muslim in Indonesia…isn’t that the country where you can be arrested for chewing gum or spitting…something like that?

    • Dave Muscato
      June 20, 2012

      I think you’re thinking of Singapore. Indonesia is almost entirely Muslim; about 1/3 of the people in Singapore are Buddhists. They both have a TON of islands; Singapore like 60 and Indonesia like 17,000.

      • Jared Cowan
        June 20, 2012

        That’s my cultural ignorance for you. It’s what I deserve focusing entirely on Japan and China’s nuances, lol

  2. rocketkirchner
    June 20, 2012

    Elementry my dear Watson . For such an intellegent paper like the Christian Science Monitor they could have at least asked some tuff questions. Maybe something with some nuance like: why did Pascal in his Pensees refuse to forgive Decarte ? Or –what is the difference between Camus ‘s Athiesm of ”the universe showing a tender indifference ” and Bauldelere’s conception of Theodicy ? Or how about this one –what are the comparisons and contrasts between Jainism and Animism ?
    I know i know ..i am asking too much …..nevertheless….

    • Jared Cowan
      June 20, 2012

      Maybe because the questions you ask are things you’d ask a religion specialist or theologian, not the average person who is still expected to have some familiarity with the bare basics of religions across the world, such as holidays, etc.

  3. rocketkirchner
    June 22, 2012

    Jared , i agree with you . But isnt that emblematic of the dumming down of our society in the area of authentic relgiuos studies that both the relgiuos fundamentalists and the secularists have not only allowed but have promoted? i dont think that deep questions of any kind on any subject should be limited to the specialist . What i am lamenting is the lack of education that involves Antiquity and the critical thinking that comes with it . And the Christian Science Monitor , a paper that i have great respect for should raise the bar and keep it there.

    • Jared Cowan
      June 22, 2012

      Of course people are going to have these questions and inquire and even study, but not everyone does, which is more a problem of people dismissing philosophy as a beneficial practice in everyday life more than dumbing down the academic standards of religious studies or theology.

      I had religious studies classes my entire college career and I learned a variety of things, even things that I didn’t learn, I looked up on my own.

      As long as people are inspired to inquire and ask questions and look for answers, I don’t think religious studies is going to disappear. And theology has its own support in churches, so unless they disappear, theology is fine as well.

  4. rocketkirchner
    June 24, 2012

    Jared , points well made , however i think that there is scant theology in churches , or it is watered down . just my view. As a Catholic christian practioner i could complain all day long about the lack of critical thought in churches . Most Christians , very sincere have not even read the Church Fathers of the Patristic age , much less have even cracked Augustine’s masterpeice ”Civitas Deo”. However i will give credit to the french and german atheists of the 20th century for their interest in christian existentialist Soren Kiekegaard . and also …might i add the first rate christian intellectuals interests in having open dailogue with todays Atheists . I would like to see more of this trickle down to the layman . this is a healthy thing .

  5. Jared Cowan
    June 24, 2012

    There’s scant theology in churches because pastors aren’t expected to teach that, or if they are, it’s not their fault as much as the seminary, one could argue.

    People are too busy, or at least give that excuse. I read Kierkegaard and City of God myself in college, but I was a religion major and philosophy minor, so I had plenty of opportunity. The average person seems too engrossed in the damn Kindle or other e readers to look into it, or it’s considered outdated or some such nonsense.

    Their interest in Kierkegaard was probably due to his criticizing the cultural Christians of his own age, just using the name for social connections, not genuinely taking the convictions seriously

    It’d be nice to have more religious education in one form or another, public and private school wise, but budget cuts tend to strike those dreams down faster than a GLBT club in the South, most of the time.

  6. rocketkirchner
    June 25, 2012

    yeah ….. i had a chance to speak at Hickman high a few years back as a guest speaker on interfaith dialogue in george frissel’s class. he had all these people come in over the year …atheists , rabbis , imans , preists , jehovahs’ witness , mormons , native american , etc…..then i sort of summed it up on how one starts off interfaith dialogue nostra atatea style with first finding and exhausting points of agreements , then moving on to parts of disagreements. the students in each hour loved it . they were full of questions . and they all signed this big card for me . it was sooooooo cooool .

    anytime i hear people get into the evolution/creation debate ( a stupid one at that ) , i always say ”when are we gonna hear about pigmy cosmology ? dont they have a view too ?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: