Sep 292011

The first part of our interview with Dr Andy Thomson, author of “Why we believe in god(s): A concise guide to the science of faith“.

Cape Reason: Episode 10

J. Anderson “Andy” Thomson, Jr., MD, is a staff psychiatrist at the University of Virginia’s Student Health Center and Institute of Law, Psychiatry and Public Policy, and maintains a private practice of adult and forensic psychiatry. He serves as a trustee of the  Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science.

Links mentioned in the interview:

“Becoming Attached” By Robert Karen

Apologist Josh McDowell: Internet the Greatest Threat to Christians

The Moral Life of Babies by Paul Bloom

Spontaneous Altruism by Chimpanzees and Young Children by Felix Warneken, Brian Hare, Alicia P. Melis, Daniel Hanus, Michael Tomasello

Jesse Bering – The Belief Instinct

The Milgram Obedience Experiment The Perils of Obedience By Kendra Cherry


Sep 292011

Executive Director of the Secular Student Alliance, August Brunsman joins us to talk about the work of the SSA and the powerful rise in secularism among the younger age groups.

Cape Reason: Episode 9

The Secular Student Alliance is a 501(c)3 educational nonprofit. They work to organize and empower nonreligious students around the country. Their primary goal is to foster successful grassroots campus groups which provide a welcoming community for secular students to discuss their views and promote their secular values. Though they are based in Columbus, Ohio and our affiliated campus groups are predominantly in the United States, they support affiliates around the globe.

August Brunsman is the executive director of the Secular Student Alliance.  He has served in that position since 2001, and started getting paid for it in 2004. He  also worked as a programmer for the Institute for Humanist Studies from 2001 to 2004. In 1997 he co-founded Students for Freethought at the Ohio State Universitywhere he graduated Phi Beta Kappa in 2001 majoring in psychology and minoring in mathematics and cognitive science.

Brunsman has served as the Secretary of the Board of the Secular Coalition for America since 2006 and is also the Secretary of the Board of the Humanist Community of Central Ohio. Additionally, he is the camp director of Camp Quest Ohio where he has volunteered since 1999.

For the UK and Ireland find out more from your region at: The National Federation of Atheist, Humanist and Secular Student Societies

Sep 292011

Back after a summer break we jump back in to interview Amanda Metskas, Executive Director of Camp Quest, for an update on how things are progressing nationally.

Cape Reason: Episode 8

Amanda K. Metskas is the executive director of Camp Quest, Inc. She has been involved with Camp Quest since 2003, and served on the board of directors from 2004-2007.  Amanda became executive director when Camp Quest, Inc. hired her as its first staff person in January 2008. As executive director, Amanda focuses on providing coordination and support services to all of the Camp Quest programs, and helps launch new Camp Quest camps across North America.

In addition to her work with Camp Quest, Amanda is the Vice President of the Humanist Community of Central Ohio.  She co-authored Raising Freethinkers: A Practical Guide for Parenting Beyond Belief with Dale McGowan, Molleen Matsumura and Jan Devor.  Amanda holds an M.A. in political science from The Ohio State University, and a B.A. in international relations and psychology from Brown University.  She lives in Columbus, Ohio with her husband August E. Brunsman IV and their two cats.