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The Friendly Atheist Podcast

Bart Campolo, Co-Author of Why I Left, Why I Stayed

Bart Campolo is the Humanist Chaplain at the Univ. of Southern California, the host of a fantastic podcast called “Humanize Me,” and the author of a new book written with his evangelical father Tony Campolo called Why I Left, Why I Stayed.

Bart, if you haven’t figured it out already, is the one who left Christianity. The book is all about that conflict, and their love for each other, and how they can both advocate for beliefs that are in direct competition with each other without losing their own bond.

I spoke with him about how his parents were devastated by his apparent apostasy, what atheists don’t get about Christians, and why hot dogs aren’t the key to a happier life.

Louis Theroux, Star of My Scientology Movie

In Louis Theroux‘s new film, My Scientology Movie, the Church of Scientology doesn’t give him access to the key leaders or buildings themselves… That sounds like quite the obstacle for a documentarian, so Theroux does the next best thing: He hires actors to recreate well-documented scenes in Scientology’s history. All the while, the actual Church seems to be keeping tabs on him.

Theroux has worked with Michael Moore, and his projects have often focused on interesting subcultures — everything from the KKK to Westboro Baptist Church.

I spoke with him about Scientology’s version of “turn the other cheek,” the harassment that one key defector of the Church still has to put up with, and what one thing could hurt the Church the most.

Richard Hatch, Survivor Winner and Reality TV Star

Richard Hatch is the winner of the first season of Survivor, where he basically created the whole concept of an alliance. He also competed on the 8th season of the show (Survivor: All-Stars) in 2004. In 2011, he was on Celebrity Apprentice, and last year, he appeared on The Biggest Loser: Temptation Nation. Along the way, he spent time in jail over unpaid taxes, though he maintains his innocence in the matter.

With the new season of Survivor set to premiere this week, we spoke about whether he’ll be returning to the show he helped popularize, his journey out of religion, and whether there’s anything redeeming about Donald Trump.

The Week in Politics and Atheism

Jessica and I sat down to talk about some of the biggest stories from the week involving religious and politics.

They included:

– A Danish man charged with blasphemy.

Death threats to a mother who fought to take down a Ten Commandments monument outside her daughter’s public school.

– The Broken Windows Theory of Church/State Separation

– How Christians still feel persecuted despite having all the power.

– The Pope’s backhanded compliment to atheists

– What happens when a fake psychic pretends to be a real psychic (who’s not really psychic).

– Communion: Is it really haunted bread?

Notes:

Here’s the clip of a former congressman not recalling the Ten Commandments during a Colbert Report segment.

Buy some of Jessica’s cross stitches!

(Image via Shutterstock)